Adam Rompel

From this Author

Michael Craig-Martin: Objects of our Time at Alan Cristea Gallery

(from left to right) Michael Craig-Martin. Objects of our Time: Takeaway coffee, 2014; Objects of our Time: Memory stick, 2014; both works, series of 12 screenprints, edition of 50; 50.0 x 50.0 cm. Courtesy the Artist and Alan Cristea Gallery. NPC.

Is a glass of water just a glass of water? Consider it for a fraction of a second and suddenly the glass of water carries a lot of Kosuthian baggage—the mind attaches a label to it, compares it to an ideal, then judges its function, and its value changes. Deconstruct the contextual outcome of that mental layering, and the glass of water not only offers[.....]

BP Walk through British Art at Tate Britain

Installation view; Robert Peake, Lady Anne Pope, 1615; Oil on wood & Paul Van Somer, lady Elizabeth Grey, Countess of Kent, c.1619; Oil on wood. Courtesy of Tate Britain. Photo: A. E. Driggs.

Can you remember the last time you were really excited about seeing your local museum’s pre-modern permanent collection? Familiarity is the antagonist for the seasoned art viewer, and growing weary of a permanent collection becomes inescapable. Perhaps this is excusable in the case of a small collection in a provincial museum—but quite a different thing when the collection bills itself as the nation’s definitive authority[.....]

Martin Creed: What’s the Point of It? at the Hayward Gallery

In a world full of arbitrary choices, Martin Creed is an artist who uses systems to make decisions and create order. Unlike most of the YBAs, who are mainly traditionalists using unconventional materials, Creed is a true conceptualist, and his work embodies the 2.0 of contemporary British art. In the lineage of Sol LeWitt—but also radically departing from his precedent—Creed examines ideas and material, identifying[.....]

Sarah Lucas: SITUATION Absolute Beach Man Rubble at Whitechapel Gallery

Sarah Lucas. Installation view, 2013 Courtesy Whitechapel Gallery, London, Photo: Stephen White

Think 1990s YBA and what artworks come to mind? A pickled shark, a bawdy story tent, a head made of frozen blood… and a photo of Sarah Lucas looking defiant with a limp cigarette in her mouth. Or better yet, her bent, worn mattress with anthropomorphically inserted fruit and veg with metal bucket. Mostly, her pieces distill the human body down to a sexualised and/or[.....]

Li Songsong: We Have Betrayed the Revolution at Pace London

Li Songsong. Guests Are All Welcome, 2013; Oil on canvas, 120cm x 120cm. Li Songsong: We Have Betrayed the Revolution, 2013; Courtesy Pace Gallery.

It would be easy to come to Li Songsong’s show at Pace London with certain assumptions, projections, and ideas about the last ten years of contemporary painting from China. Assumptions informed by how galleries have vulgarly packaged Chinese contemporary art as a struggle for freer (market) expression. Projections on what it means for an artist to make a painting in post-Deng Xiaoping‘s China. Ideas built[.....]

Sturtevant: Leaps Jumps and Bumps at Serpentine Gallery

Sturtevant. Sex Dolls, 2011; installation view, Sturtevant: Leaps Jumps and Bumps, 2013; Courtesy Serpentine Gallery, London. Photo: Jerry Hardman-Jones

It’s nearly impossible to talk about a show of Sturtevant’s work and have it understood. Like a book, you have to start at the beginning. The key to Sturtevant is context. In 1964’s New York City, Elaine Sturtevant sent shock waves through the art world when she started making replicas of the work of her contemporaries. For this, she received a tremendous amount of crap. The[.....]