Marlborough Contemporary

Werner Büttner – The Marking of the Abyss, Marlborough Contemporary, 6 Albemarle Street, London W1, until 18th April 2015

Werner Büttner Magersüchtige, Enten Fütternd..., 2014 (Anorexic Feeding Ducks) Oil on canvas 150 x 120 cm Courtesy of the artist and Marlborough Contemporary

Werner Büttner
Magersüchtige, Enten Fütternd…, 2014
(Anorexic Feeding Ducks)
Oil on canvas 150 x 120 cm
Courtesy of the artist and Marlborough Contemporary

This is Buttner’s first solo show at the gallery. It is now nearly three decades since his show at the ICA with Georg Herold and Albert Oehlen, and so this is a welcome return. A part of the ‘Junge Wilde’ with Martin Kippenberger and Oehlen he has continued to make his mark through his paintings on the continental art scene for many decades.

Werner Büttner Die Markierung des Abgrunds (The Marking of the Abyss) 2012 Oil on canvas, 150 x 120 cm Courtesy of the artist and Marlborough Contemporary

Werner Büttner
Die Markierung des Abgrunds
(The Marking of the Abyss)
2012
Oil on canvas, 150 x 120 cm
Courtesy of the artist and Marlborough Contemporary

As one sees here he questions our understanding and values through satire and irony to great effect. Alongside the nine larger works are C-prints and collages. The latter are of interest because they are a first step for his paintings.

http://www.marlboroughcontemporary.com

Flowers Cork Street

Claerwen James, Flowers, 21 Cork Street, London W1, until 18th April 2015

Girl without a Basket of Flowers, 2014 (c) Claerwen James,  courtesy of Flowers Gallery, London and New York

Girl without a Basket of Flowers, 2014
(c) Claerwen James,
courtesy of Flowers Gallery, London and New York

James’s striking images of young female subjects are painted from photographs whether family snapshots or discovered in junk shops, magazines or even car boot sales. In some you will see inspiration from Degas, Picasso (early) and Corot.

Green Girl, 2015  (c) Claerwen James,  courtesy of Flowers Gallery, London and New York

Green Girl, 2015
(c) Claerwen James,
courtesy of Flowers Gallery, London and New York

The result, however, is not a portrait but a study of a female figure staring outwards from the canvas with an enigmatic expression inviting us to decide what we may be seeing. The artist says ““Thresholds of one kind or another are approaching. Perhaps they are here. Perhaps they are already past. A photograph is fraught with the sense of time passing – the impassable gulf between that instant and this. Unfulfilled potential and paths not taken.”

Girl I saw in a magazine, 2014  (c) Claerwen James,  courtesy of Flowers Gallery, London and New York

Girl I saw in a magazine, 2014
(c) Claerwen James,
courtesy of Flowers Gallery, London and New York

 http://www.flowersgallery.com

Two at the Albemarle Gallery

Albemarle Gallery, 49 Albemarle Street, London W1, until 11th April 2015

Upstairs: Mario Dalpra

march2015_12

The talented Austrian artist Mario Dalpra takes you into a very different world of biomorphic figures that suggest the gallery has been taken over by another planet, but they draw you in as their appearance, in colourful high-gloss lacquered bronze, is not threatening but rather suggest a humorous element in the artist’s output. On the walls are his powerful “face” paintings and there are also examples of his “Statements” series as well.

march2015_10

 

Downstairs: Realism 2015

march2015_17This striking exhibition of contemporary realist paintings by Ralf Arzt, Luigi Benedicenti, Thom Boekhoven, Juan Cossio, Ria de Henau and Philip Munoz was curated by the well-known hyper-realist painter, Luigi Benedicenti who sadly died recently. I am sure he will be much missed by the many of you that rightly admire his work.

march2015_23

http://www.albemarlegallery.com

The Fleming Collection

Thomas Joshua Cooper: Scattered Waters – Sources Streams Rivers, Gallery 2, The Fleming Collection, 13 Berkeley Street, London W1, until 11 April 2015

 

Thomas Joshua Cooper Late afternoon - The Mouth of the River Clyde - The Firth of Clyde near Ardmore 1991-2014 Credit: Thomas Joshua Cooper

Thomas Joshua Cooper
Late afternoon – The Mouth of the River Clyde – The Firth of Clyde near Ardmore 1991-2014
Credit: Thomas Joshua Cooper

What makes Thomas Joshua Cooper such a justly memorable photographer is his decision many years ago to only photograph landscapes and only with black and white film using one camera and lens. Although born in the USA of mixed Jewish and Cherokee descent, he came to Scotland in 1982 to be the Head of Photography at the Glasgow School of Art and despite his many travels always return to his studio in Glasgow.

 Thomas Joshua Cooper -  High Noon - Early Autumn - Message to Timothy H. O'Sullivan - The River Findhorn - The Findhorn Gorge 1997-2014 Credit: Thomas Joshua Cooper

Thomas Joshua Cooper –
High Noon – Early Autumn – Message to Timothy H. O’Sullivan – The River Findhorn – The Findhorn Gorge 1997-2014
Credit: Thomas Joshua Cooper

His love for Scotland is revealed in these photographs which he has worked on over the last thirty-two years recording the rivers and streams of Scotland.  The resulting images are contemplative elegies that transcend the boundaries of the figurative and abstract

www.flemingcollection.com

 

Ben Brown Fine Arts

Heinz Mack – ZERO & MORE, Ben Brown Fine Arts, 12 Brook’s Mews, London W1, until 10th April 2015

Installation view - Heinz Mack: ZERO & More. Courtesy of Ben Brown Fine Arts

Installation view – Heinz Mack: ZERO & More.
Courtesy of Ben Brown Fine Arts

The German-born artist Heinz Mack, who was co-founder of the 1950s and 60s ZERO movement with Otto Piene, has this special show which combines works from the ZERO period with new paintings and sculpture that he has created in the last five years.

Installation view - Heinz Mack: ZERO & More. Courtesy of Ben Brown Fine Arts

Installation view – Heinz Mack: ZERO & More.
Courtesy of Ben Brown Fine Arts

The earlier works feature black and white as a minimalist force in ‘the adventure of seeking out and discovering the still-white spaces on the map of art.’ (Mack), while the later ones (he returned to painting in the first half of the 1990s) inspired the exploration of colour (Chromatic Constellations) and the effects of prismatic refraction which suggest the idea of movement on the canvas.  It is an impressive show.

www.benbrownfinearts.com

 

Breese Little

CLASSICICITY: Ancient art, contemporary objects, Breese Little, 30b Great Sutton Street, London, EC1, until 2nd April 2015

Installation View, March 2015 (Photo Tom Horak)

Installation View, March 2015 (Photo Tom Horak)

As the exhibition’s name suggests CLASSICICITY is a fascinating combination of ancient and modern works in differing media. It shows how Greek and Roman antiquities sit well with contemporary art works and underlines the essential meaning of the word “classical”.

Installation View, March 2015 (Photo Tom Horak)

Installation View, March 2015 (Photo Tom Horak)

Alongside the ancient artworks you will find works by both established and emerging artists such as Nell Allen, Maggi Hambling, Richard Hawkins, Rachel Kneebone, Sarah Lucas, Ged Quinn, Ryan M Pfeiffer + Rebecca Walz and Alexandre Singh.

Installation View, March 2015 (Photo Tom Horak)

Installation View, March 2015 (Photo Tom Horak)

This enjoyable show has been curated by Ruth Allen and James Cahill with the help of Rupert Wace Ancient Art.

Installation View, March 2015 (Photo Tom Horak)

Installation View, March 2015 (Photo Tom Horak)

 

Open: Wednesday – Friday 12 – 6 pm | Saturday 12 – 4 pm

 

http://www.breeselittle.com

Installation View, March 2015 (Photo Tom Horak)

Installation View, March 2015 (Photo Tom Horak)

 

Early Photography: Two exhibitions in London

The Age of Salt. Art, Science and Early Photography, James Hyman, 16 Savile Row, London W1, until 31st March 2015

Roger Fenton Woods at Bolton Abbey, 1856-1860

Roger Fenton
Woods at Bolton Abbey, 1856-1860

This exhibition traces the early days of photography through both technical and artistic development. Some of the earlier works, such as the Roger Fenton shown here, reflect paintings of the period.

Etienne-Jules Marey Analyse de la marche et de la course Station Physiologique

Etienne-Jules Marey
Analyse de la marche et de la course Station Physiologique

There are salt prints from Italy, France and the United Kingdom combined with examples of the emerging techniques such as collodion on glass, albumen printing and the differing forms of photomechanical engraving.

http://www.jameshymangallery.com

FOOTNOTE:
There is also the exhibition Salt and Silver: Early Photography 1840-1860 at Tate Britain (until 25th May) which includes some of the rarest and seldom publicly shown examples of these early photographs. They show both historic and daily scenes from the mid-19th century.

tate.org.uk