29 Jun, 2009

Scribbles in space at Tate Britain

Posted by: admin In: Guardian

Cold Corners is series of giant triangles visitors walk through

Tate Britain’s rather grand, neoclassical central sculpture galleries have over recent years seen sprinting runners, political protest and a giant French rotary vegetable shredder. Today an arguably more conventional work for the huge space is revealed: a thin, zig-zagging metal sculpture made up of 26 enormous triangles which visitors are invited to walk through.

The Duveens Commission is an annual event. An artist is invited to fill the echoing space in much the same way as artists are commissioned by Tate Modern to fill the Turbine Hall space.

This year the Tate went for a less established artist in the shape of Dublin-born Eva Rothschild, not known for monumental work at all, and Tate Britain’s director, Stephen Deuchar, declared himself delighted with the results. “The Duveens is an incredibly challenging space for an artist to work in, it can be overwhelming,” he said. “What is so great about what Eva has done is that she has kept all the lightness and delicacy of her small-scale work but it’s transformed into something that takes over this rather pompous, neoclassical architectural space.

“I just think the end result is breathtaking, it’s beautiful.”

Rothschild, who lives and works in Hackney, east London, has created a sculpture she calls Cold Corners in which 1.8 tonnes of aluminium box tubing snakes through the length and height of the galleries, shaped in triangles. Curator Katharine Stout said the work, which loops up and over the galleries’ stone architraves, was “like a scribble in space”.

The artist initially spent time sketching in the gallery to see how visitors walked through a space about 80 metres long. She was more thrilled than scared or intimidated, she said, when first approached to take on the commission and wanted to create something that combined clarity and confusion. She also wanted to fill the space: “I really did feel that I wanted something that took on the whole stretch of the galleries and something that was sequential.”

The artist said there was no meaning as such to the work. “I wouldn’t say the work is representational. It’s experiential, although if people bring things to it I don’t mind that. But I don’t have a narrative.”

Getting the work in to the Duveens was an engineering as well as an artistic feat with some of the bits of metal appearing to only just touch the floor and walls. “To achieve that lightness you have some very serious physics and engineering going on,” said Deuchar.

He said Rothschild had been emerging as an artist to watch over the past two or three years and “we just thought it would be fun to see whether her small-scale work would translate on to a larger stage”.

The Duveen galleries opened in 1937 and were the first galleries in England designed specifically for the display of sculpture. The first Duveens Commission was in 2000 when Mona Hatoum created Mouli-Julienne, a giant version of a Moulinex kitchen device. Since then Anya Gallaccio has filled the space with tree trunks and sugar; Michael Landy has replicated his parents’ house in a work called Semi-detached; Mark Wallinger recreated Brian Haw’s Parliament Square protest; and last year Martin Creed created Work No 850 in which a constant – during opening hours at least – stream of people ran as fast as they could through the gallery.

It became an annual commission last year after Sotheby’s came up with sponsorship. Today the auction house said it had signed up for three years but beyond that was undecided.

Cold Corners opened to the public yesterday and will remain in place until 29 November.

guardian.co.uk © Guardian News & Media Limited 2009 | Use of this content is subject to our Terms & Conditions | More Feeds

Read the original post on Guardian Arts & Architecture

No Responses to "Scribbles in space at Tate Britain"

Comment Form


Flickr PhotoStream

    Fairy of the middle of Winter/ Яварь Середина-Зимыnozzle head trioLars MikkelsenCountry house and waterfalls - The majolica cloister of Santa Chiara in Naples (years 1739-1742) - Architect Domenico Antonio Vaccaro - Painters Giuseppe and Donato MassaCyborg Dude with Autodesk Sketchbook Pro & iPadKnock Out Game175. The Carlyle Hotel, South BeachPájaro N°3Quasi PrimaveraFfunny FfriendsCatch!American DreamA Blessing


HaggBridge.com brings you a daily update of news from art world, focused on UK based artists, exhibitions, and galleries.