British artist John Stezaker is fascinated by the lure of images. Taking classic movie stills, vintage postcards and book illustrations, Stezaker makes collages to give old images a new meaning. Bethan Huws' sculptures and text works have the potential to project us into another time and space, and the ability to alter our perception. Titling the exhibition 'Capelgwyn', literally Whitechapel in Welsh, is a way of bringing her individual history into the show. The exhibition features Giorgio Andreotta Calo', Jalal Toufic, Huang Xiaopeng is part of the international touring programme Art in the Auditorium, which showcases some of the most exciting artists working with film, video and animation.
British artist John Stezaker is fascinated by the lure of images. Taking classic movie stills, vintage postcards and book illustrations, Stezaker makes collages to give old images a new meaning. By adjusting, inverting and slicing separate pictures together to create unique new works of art, Stezaker explores the subversive force of found images. Stezaker’s famous Mask series fuses the profiles of glamorous sitters with caves, hamlets, or waterfalls, making for images of eerie beauty.
His ‘Dark Star’ series turns publicity portraits into cut-out silhouettes, creating an ambiguous presence in the place of the absent celebrity. Stezaker’s way of giving old images a new context reaches its height in the found images of his Third Person Archive: the artist has removed delicate, haunting figures from the margins of obsolete travel illustrations. Presented as images on their own, they now take the centre stage of our attention
This first major exhibition of John Stezaker offers a chance to see work by an artist whose subject is the power in the act of looking itself. With over 90 works from the 1970s to today, the artist reveals the subversive force of images, reflecting on how visual language can create new meaning.
John Stezaker is organised by the Whitechapel Gallery, London, and Mudam, Luxembourg.
A display of John Stezaker’s work is on show at the Louis Vuitton Maison, 17-18 New Bond Street, London, from mid-January-19 March 2011.
This exhibition is accompanied by a fully illustrated book. £28, click here to buy.
Bethan Huws: Capelgwyn
From a tiny sailing boat made from a single reed to raising half the Gallery’s floor by 17.5cm, Welsh artist Bethan Huws is interested in subtly altering our experience of spaces to create sites for contemplation. She works with watercolour, drawings, wall texts, installation, sculpture and film to make unexpected links to our experiences of daily life. Her own personal memories and cultural identity are at the heart of her poetic works of art. Titling the exhibition Capelgwyn, literally Whitechapel in Welsh, is a way of bringing her individual history into the show.
Huws’ sculptures and text works have the potential to project us into another time and space, and the ability to alter our perception. One of her signature works, a hand crafted reed boat could take us somewhere far beyond the physical confines of the gallery, while the raised Gallery floor’s horizontal surface reflects the boat’s keel, and changes the dimensions and acoustics of the space itself. A series of wall texts show Huws’ research into the French idiomatic expressions she has found in the work of Marcel Duchamp, offering both a possible interpretation of his work, and an indirect way of understanding hers.
Giorgio Andreotta Calo, Jalal Toufic, Huang Xiaopeng
Artists from around the world show moving image work at the Gallery. Italian artist Giorgio Andreotta Calò, uses documentation to explore urban history and change. The performance of the Shiite ritual Ashura is captured by Lebanese writer and artist Jalal Toufic, while Chinese artist Huang Xiaopeng analyses the politics in the relationship between language and technology.
The exhibition is part of the international touring programme Art in the Auditorium, which showcases some of the most exciting artists working with film, video and animation. Giorgio Andreotta Calò is selected by GAMeC, Bergamo; Jalal Toufic by Beirut Art Center, Beirut; and Huang Xiaopeng by Para/Site Art Space, Hong Kong.
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Image: John Stezaker
77-82 Whitechapel High Street, London
Opening times: Tuesday – Sunday, 11am – 6pm, Thursdays, 11am – 9pm.