Cornelia Parker, 'Cold Dark Matter: An Exploded View', 1991, Tate. © Cornelia Parker. Image courtesy of Tate, London 2013. Art Everywhere
Nationwide, until 26 August
One of few things I actively hate is billboard advertising, because it impinges, without consent, on the public realm and our mental space. So a new initiative from this Monday – ‘Art Everywhere’ – has awakened my inner adbuster in the way it has commandeered over 20,000 billboards up and down the country for the display of artworks. Well, not artworks in themselves, but reproductions of 57 well-loved objects in national collections by British artists from Hogarth to Hodgkin, L.S. Lowry to Sarah Lucas.
Billed as the biggest art exhibition ever in the UK, this admirable project manifests itself on a street corner near you for the next two weeks. Keep an eye out for works by a number of Royal Academicians including Cornelia Parker (whose work Cold Dark Matter: An Exploded View reached the top ten in a public vote on the Art Everywhere website), Humphrey Ocean and Tracey Emin.
Marina Abramović Institute campaign
Performance artist Marina Abramović Hon RA has over the last decade become increasingly interested in how the canon of performance art – including her own ground-breaking works from the 1970s onwards – will have a legacy into the future. How can such an ephemeral type of art be preserved, documented, catalogued and perhaps re-presented? Abramović’s answer is to develop an institution in Hudson, NY, dedicated to the archiving, education and practice of performance art, in particular ‘long durational’ works that are rarely seen in museums. The artist has funded the first phase of development, which has been masterminded by Rem Koolhaus’s revered architectural practice OMA, but she is now asking for donations through Kickstarter. Click here to find out more about the project.
Installation view: Gilberto Zorio, Blain|Southern. Photo: Peter Mallet 2013 Gilberto Zorio
Blain Southern, until 28 September 2013
Blain Southern in London’s Hanover Square presents a new exhibition of sculptures and installations by Gilberto Zorio, one of the affiliates of Arte Povera in the late 1960s.
This post-war Italian art movement has often been characterised by the use of ‘poor’ materials, such as found and junk objects, but ‘Povera’ had a wider meaning for the group – it represented art that had ‘something sudden and unforeseen with respect to conventional expectations’, in the words of the movement’s theorist Germano Celant. An example of this attitude in the Blain Southern show is Microphones (1968), in which visitors are encouraged to stand on concrete blocks and speak into microphones, the results of which are then amplified repetitively in an unsettling way.
Tramway, until 22 September 2013
British artist Brian Griffiths, the subject of a show at Glasgow’s Tramway gallery, was born in the same year Microphones was made. His sculptures and site-specific projects work mix an Arte Povera interest in lo-fi materials with a witty, pop culture-influenced world view: substances such as cardboard and canvas have, in his Griffiths’ hands, constructed sculptures of computers and cartoon animal characters.
Brian Griffiths, 'Borrowed World, Borrowed Eyes'. Installation view, Tramway, August 2013 Courtesy the artist and Vilma Gold, London. Photo: Keith Hunter
In Tramway, he fills the warehouse-style space with head-height cuboid sculptures covered by tarpaulins, creating a strange minimalist cityscape in which the viewer can wander.
Installation view of the walled garden at Fulham Palace Fulham Palace Sculpture Trail
Until 26 August
And a much more conventional sculptural circuit is on view for the next fortnight in London’s Fulham Palace, by the bank of the Thames near Putney Bridge.
In the interiors and grounds of this Tudor residence, formerly a retreat for Bishops of London, Surrey Sculpture Society have installed a trail of both abstract and figurative works for visitors to follow.
Sam Phillips is a London-based arts journalist and Acting Editor of RA Magazine