I have been very inspired preparing classes for and speaking about art with my GCSE level student - female surrealist artists (truly intriguing and under appreciated) such as Meret Oppenheim and Remedios Varo; collage artists including Peter Blake and Lynda Barry; poet and illustrator William Blake and more...
8 November 2013
I was pleased to happen upon an exhibition of work by Francis Alys at the Art Exchange gallery whilst on the campus of University of Essex earlier this week. Having seen two exhibition of Alÿs' work in London, I was keen to view more recent projects.
Seven Walks is a fascinating insight into seven individual projects which Alÿs embarked upon during visits to London over a five year period. Typically, Alÿs has created 'rules' to follow which have resulted in diverse outcomes represented in a variety of ways.
Of the seven walks, two stand out as of most interest to me: walks around London on the 'sunny/shady' side of the street, which have been represented by a line drawn on two large street maps; and a man walking, whilst banging a stick on traditional iron railings, thus creating a beautiful sound and breaking down the 'barrier' created by the railings, rendering them a musical instrument.
I am reminded, through the content of this exhibition, of the work by the innovative French artist Sophie Calle and of conversations with and ideas explored by Royal College of Art alumna and friend and ceramics artist Joanne Ayre.
Sadly, I am missing the exhibition linked symposium Walking the Metropolis at Colchester's First Site today, but I high recommend a visit to the gallery exhibition if you are in the local area.