artists & participants
What is the space that lies between ideas and their eventual articulation as language, actions or objects in the world? How can we define those interim moments of formlessness and effervescence that hover unpredictable and light before tipping into the realm of the real? This exhibition moves between the freefall lightness of thought and the contradictory weight of words as they form on the page. The works included gesture toward or take the form of blank sheets of paper: creased and folded, falling through space, or traversed by the body.
Anna Molska’s 2006 film Perspective sets the abstraction of utopian ideals against the realities of lived experience. In this work, the artist ties ropes to her back and walks through snow. As she moves forward the ropes pull tight, converging into a one-point perspective that breaks and unravels moments later as she falls. The snowy landscape in Molska’s work can be read as the empty expanses of a blank page, while the ropes form a delicate drawing in space.
Ryan Gander’s large print from the series Felix provides a stage… (2008) documents the making of his work A sheet of paper on which I was about to draw, as it slipped from my table and fell to the floor (a fleet of crystal spheres, each laser-etched with images of falling sheets of paper). Here, the artist stalls the processes of production, dwelling in the moments before the realisation of a work that itself “alludes to the ‘what if’ of the creative process, and the fugitive nature of thought and inspiration.”
Both Vlatka Horvat and Ignacio Uriarte re-work blank sheets of paper, cutting, ripping and reassembling their fragile forms to create new geometrical patterns. Likewise working with minimal means, Martin Creed’s 1995 Work No. 88: A Sheet of A4 Paper Crumpled into a Ball is tight with the possibility of creating something from nothing, from the most futile of gestures. Gareth Long’s Work in Progress (2010) was made as part of a suite of works foregrounding the mechanisms of artistic production. A looped depiction of the cartoon character Daffy Duck, seemingly locked in the throes of ‘writer’s block’, it points with humour to the sincerity and anguish of the creative process.
At the heart of the exhibition lies a concern with the elusiveness of meaning, the inadequacy of language and the struggle for creative expression.
Invocations of the Blank Page
Kurator: Frances Loeffler
Künstler: Martin Creed, Ryan Gander, Vlatka Horvat, Gareth Long, Anna Molska, Ignacio Uriarte