Antoni Tàpies: Revulsion and Desire, Timothy Taylor Gallery, 15 Carlos Place, London W1, until 18th March 2017
One can see why the Catalan artist Antoni Tàpies (1923–2012) exerted such an influence on Spanish art for more than sixty years. These works created since 2000 show that even in his later years he had lost none of his impact and reflect his 1955 observation: “If forms are not capable of wounding, irritating or inducing society to meditate, to make it realise how backward it is, if they are not a revulsive, then they are not authentic works of art.”
He used a mixture of materials in creating these abstract pieces, including sand, marble dust, chalk, dirt and human hair. The works on show very much suggest the body, especially Cames i AT, 2011 which hints at sexual congress while others have a hint of violence and confrontation His use of a cross-like motif evokes the idea of the ‘signature’ or mark of someone who cannot write and he also used numbers as well. They are works that leave a lasting impression on the viewer.