Grayson Perry, Julian Opie, Chris Levine, Tracey Emin, Antony Gormley, Gavin Turk… And the list goes on!
A new exhibition at the Lawrence Alkin Gallery in the West End is hot to trot with show pieces from the most influential – and at times controversial – names from the British art world. Not-to-be-missed works such as Grayson Perry’s ‘Reclining Artist’, Chris Levine’s ‘Lightness of Being, Blue’ and Tracey Emin’s portrait of Kate Moss adorn the inviting space.
Indeed, the gallery states that the show, ‘celebrates the many different techniques within art and how these artists came to be the renowned names they are now…’.
‘The Perfect [sic] exhibition for the serious art collector.’.
Art Today’s favourite pieces (‘Kuma Mela’ and ‘Lavinia Plantia’) were created by British contemporary visual artist Marc Quinn, whose specialisms are sculpture, installation and painting. According to his web bio, Quinn ‘makes art about what it is to be a person living in the world’ – whether that is analysing Man’s relationship with nature, or exploring what identity and beauty mean.
The vibrancy and tropical elements of Quinn’s pieces flow seamlessly into comparable offerings by Gary Hume. ‘Magda’ and ‘Vicious’ display beautiful, almost Oceanic, palettes, with an edgier and more urbane feel.
The Natural-World theme is then extrapolated by butterflies, first depicted in Damien Hirst’s etching ‘To Belie’, and then proliferated in Peter Blake’s double homage to Hirst: ‘The Butterfly Man Tunis’ and ‘The Butterfly Man Hollywoodland’.
Providing a stark contrast to such organic works, the sharp, linear subjects featured by Julian Opie, Michael Craig-Martin and Gavin Turk give a post-modern edge to an exhibition focussed on the 21st Century. Epitomised by Hirst’s ‘Black
Utopia 2012′, one feels comfortably and firmly positioned within the parameters of the cutting-edge Contemporary Art scene. Tracey Emin’s delicate screenprints expand the show’s linear range, challenging the precision and exact finishing of some of the other works.
With such a plethora of artistic flavours on offer by key avant-garde players, this exhibition begs the question: What defines 21st Century art? If this particular show is anything to go by (and it is), the answer should be: The ever-growing range of media available to convey an ever-expanding notion of what constitutes modern art.
The Lawrence Alkin Gallery can be found at 42, New Compton St, London. Brit Art runs until 3rd March 2018 with Free entry.
Credits: Lawrence Alkin Gallery Press Office; marcquinn.com]