Girl in Stitches

Being the occasional and rambling account of one young lady's adventures with fabric and a soldering iron

Art?

I visited the Hepworth gallery in Wakefield with my mother and grandmother today, and I’m not really sure what art is right now.

There were exhibitions on three artists: Barbara Hepworth, Anthony Caro and Magali Reus, and we all agreed the only one we liked was Hepworth. I could have looked at her stuff all day.

But the Reus exhibition. What was that about? I just didn’t understand it. There were fibreglass platforms on the floor which held toothpaste boxes intersected with lemons, and pieces of bread with holes in them, and a deconstructed insulated plastic flower pot. The bloke in the gallery said they were things she’d found at the side of the road. That did not help me understand.

The Hepworth sculptures were beautiful and tactile and every young child was being hissed at by a relative not to touch them because they have that kind of draw for you. You want to touch and walk around and look through, and even if they’re too abstract to understand they still make you feel. The Caro was sort of similar, though I hated them I could usually see what he was trying out when he made them and they were made to be looked at.

So it’s obvious the Caro and Hepworth were for anyone to look at. Who’s supposed to look at the Reus? They were inaccessible, random collections of objects mostly on the floor rather than eye level, with no aesthetic appeal and no explanation of the artistic process behind them. They hadn’t been labelled so you had to interpret the map of the gallery to know which was which. It seemed very self-absorbed and not for spectators. Maybe it’s art, but it’s not worth giving an exhibition to.

Grandma thought they were ‘rubbish’.

 

Anyway, recent work.

I started a piece based on the Galilean moons of Jupiter, but I was running short on inspiration and then started making some jeans, so I sort of ran out of steam with that one. I’ve got a few vague ideas, but now I’ve been to The Hepworth all I currently want to do is sculpt stuff…

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