All exhibitions are completely free to view.
“Alternative Gravities” refers to a method Jonathan Ridge sometimes uses, of tilting, tipping and turning the surface of a painting to determine the direction of the paint, effectively using gravity as a tool. In these paintings that tease with glimpses of the tangible, an assumed worldly orientation of up and down is sometimes in question and because of the abstract territory, often arbitrary.
Cherry picking elements of eclectic visual influence, everything from Abstract Expressionism, Pop Art, Romanticism, even snatches from Urban Art and digital media, Ridge’s layered paintings owe as much to the advent of the layer function in Photoshop as a rich historical tradition in painting. These Postmodernist arrangements of visual ‘noise’ describe busy environments, with the different references and paint effects competing for our attention. Elements fire off one another from edge to edge and front to back, as many layers of paint are employed in the spirit of experimentation, central to Ridge’s work. The resultant rich palette of incidents and effects gives the viewer of these turbulent, but highly controlled compositions a great deal with which to actively engage.
‘Mimesis' – from the Greek 'mimos' imitator or actor. This exhibition operates within a palpable impasse between an absorbing narrative of books and generations of stored knowledge and the ordered, timeless quality of a public library.
The exhibition is accompanied by a publication ‘Mimesis’, co-written by Critchlow and Jokhova, with a commissioned text by Becky Huff Hunter
Westminster Reference Library presents a solo exhibition of original artwork by Zoom Rockman. The 15-year old Londoner, described by the Daily Telegraph as a “young comic genius”, has been writing, drawing and publishing his own award-winning comic The Zoom!, feted by The Independent as “detailed, witty, exuberant and packed with larger-than-life characters”, since he was 8. Zoom started working for The Beano! when he was 12 with a regular monthly strip since, featuring his character, ‘Skanky Pigeon’.
Michele Del Campo: In my project, I introduce a series of random people from different walks of life who after a fall of no major consequences find themselves briefly suspended in time. Their fall may be caused by a slight distraction, by rushing around or other mundane circumstance, but the sudden shock to their system this causes, and consequent interruption of routine activity, prompt these individuals to reassess matters and might even reveal deeper truths about their own lives.
The sculptures, starkly iconographic constructions assembled from a wide range of contrasting materials unified through the figures’ cast-like metallic finish, draw upon the High Modernist aesthetics of Picasso, Miró, Ernst and others, realigning aspects of early Modernism with several present-day concerns. Not least amongst these is the artist’s critical recognition of the now ubiquitous language of advertising and management-speak, a powerfully influential force within our increasingly dehumanising, money-driven culture.
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In her new solo show at Westminster Reference Library, Clementine McGaw questions and explores the potentiality of our own existence through paint. The paintings are treated as sacred human and non-human objects through which the artist relates to flesh and its nothingness. The series of works is inspired by the writings of Julia Kristeva, Darian Leader and by Giorgio Agamben’s theory of potentiality.
‘... the painful realisation that the object already contains the possibility of its non-existence. A nothingness is created’
- Darian Leader
A Portrait of our Population' is a representation of human society in the twenty first century. In this exhibition the artist explores contemporary society and its values and depicts scenes of modern life through use of abstract and representative imagery.
Photographs by Hark Yeung and artworks by Fong So.
The umbrella, a symbol of protecting civil liberties in the Umbrella Movement in Hong Kong in 2014, links art exhibitions in three world cities: New York, London and Hong Kong. We use umbrellas to keep rain off our heads. During the Hong Kong Occupy Movement in 2014, protestors used umbrellas to protect themselves from harmful pepper spray and tear-gas fumes. The two-month occupation of central Hong Kong to protest the government’s political “reform” plan has since been dubbed the Umbrella Movement. Civil liberties were discussed in the Umbrella Movement, and prompted these exhibitions by the two journalist-turned artists. Umbrella is the theme of the first two exhibitions.
The two Hong Kong artists’ exhibits focus on what has happened in Hong Kong after the city’s handover by the United Kingdom to the People’s Republic of China in 1997. Most of Fong So’s artworks in this exhibition can be viewed as an imagery summary of some of the biggest protests in Hong Kong from 1997 to 2014. His work, to a certain extent, reflects Hong Kong’s complicated history, its Chinese connections, its international environment, and also the sentiments and aspirations of its people – Hongkongers.