DETACHED, GAGOSIAN GALLERY
During my flying visit back to London I managed to get a chance to visit the Gagosian at Kings Cross before hopping back on the Eurostar.
The gallery space is magnificent, (as is to be expected from a gallery whose flyers are printed on mount-board) and the presentation of Henry Moore’s work last year brought home to me the pure vastness of the space where it encapsulated his usually outdoor sculptures with a splendiferous grandeur. However for me, Whiteread’s work and the Gagosian’s Britannia Street space were not a match made in heaven. The largest room contains her 3 shed castings, whose concrete colour was somewhat lost in the grey expanse of flooring. The catalogue photos (and interestingly the photos the Gagosian chooses to put on its website) are of the sheds situated in outdoor green spaces where I felt the pieces stood with much more poise. The overwhelming grey-ness in the gallery seemed to mask the details in the concrete and rather washed-out the works taking away from their ghost like form which does indeed beautifully suggest a disquieted trace of human existence.
The other works included castings of doors and windows in coloured pale resins. Watery greens and submersive rose hues bring a beautiful quietness to an object whose function has been removed. It is interesting to inspect the surface of each piece whilst constructing their age, material and time period through just the textures captured by the resin cast.
A tranquil exhibition which is well worth a visit, but perhaps could have worked well in a stately home type environment adding some contrast to the minimalistic nature of Whiteread’s work. Sometimes simple beauty works wonderfully on its own, other times the viewer needs to be reminded how beautiful the simplicity is.
GAGOSIAN GALLERY, BRITANNIA STREET, LONDON
APRIL 11 – MAY 25, 2013