ART UNDER ATTACK – HISTORIES OF BRITISH ICONOCLASM
EXHIBITION AT TATE BRITAIN RUNS UNTIL 5 JANUARY 2013
Got lucky, I was successful in winning admission for two, to the private view of ART UNDER ATTACK at the Tate Britain, London. It was organised by the Guardian Events Team, of the Guardian newspaper.
We were asked not to arrive before 6.45 so that gave us the chance for a quick one at The Morpeth Arms nearby. It was heaving, being near Christmas.
Nice though, and we met a couple of other artists who told us they had just spent the whole day at the Tate Britain, saying it was now absolutely marvellous, and they had not even had time to see all the work on display.
I must definitely go there before Christmas, as at that time it is usually less crowded at galleries – I find Christmas Eve is best!.
Our new friends were very interesting to talk to, as we had a lot in common. Gil has a website, here is a link
The Tate Britain staff and the Guardian staff made us very welcome, with wine and beer and soft drinks available. and we had an excellent comprehensive introduction to the exhibition given by the curator Ruth Kenny.
I had not known much about Art Under Attack and now I have visited, I can recommend it to all artists, and those of us who are interested in history and politics. In particular I found the section on Religion – Dissolution, and Religion – Reformation, very relevant to my reading of Wolf Hall and Bring up the Bodies, novels by Hilary Mantel about the reign of Henry VIII.
The section in Art Under Attack dealing with Politics – Suffragettes, was fascinating too. There is an image of the Rokeby Venus, after it had been slashed by Mary ‘Slasher’ Richardson, the militant suffragette, showing the cut marks. Amazing to look at it now in the National Gallery, there is no sign of restoration.
The room Aesthetics – Attacks on Art included a sculpture by Allen Jones, a fascinating work, ‘CHAIR’ ALLEN JONES
Apparently acid was thrown by a woman on the face of the female figure – one of those which is bent over on all fours with a table on its back. Interesting also because I had admired the work of Allen Jones in the Pop Goes London exhibition at Christies Gallery, Bond Street, London. See my earlier post about this exhibition the Pop Goes London exhibition.
THE GUARDIAN – A REVIEW OF ART UNDER ATTACK – lots more to read on their web site
THE INDEPENDENT – ARTICLE BY WRITER JACK ORLIK
I found a well-argued criticism of the exhibition and the policy of the Tate in an article from The Independent newspaper by Jack Orlik, a writer who I have not come across before.