First things first, in case you read no further: go and see Alice Anderson’s exhibition, Memory Movement Memory Objects, at Wellcome Collection. I found parts of it extraordinary, that I have returned to repeatedly. The curation, integrating strong design and careful lighting with the artist’s works, has produced effects that are aesthetically powerful and thought-provoking.
But I’ve struggled to write this piece, to express what it meant for me in the context of what it appeared to mean for the artist, and why it was in this venue.
As a biologist, I’m used to the idea that elements combine to form simple and complex molecules in an orderly way, and with a ‘purpose’. How different it must appear to the geologist, who studies the rocks that make up our planet. While the basic tools that form these objects – matter and energy – are the same, the scale is massive, the forces and timescale barely imaginable, and here there is no guiding template, no enzymes to channel the way molecules combine, just a relentless chain of events.
An affecting performance about identity, mortality and love connecting on different levels.
I can count the numbers of video installations that have really engaged me on the fingers of Mickey Mouse’s right hand. So it was with little enthusiasm that I learned that two of this year’s four Turner Prize artists work mainly with film.
For people squeamish at the idea of giving or receiving the kiss of life, falling into the water in 18th century London was distinctly more concerning for both parties, as the remedy of choice was a smoke enema, and devices were installed at strategic points along the Thames.
A Martin Creed show full of rhythms and geometries fills and complements an old industrial space.