MAD DOGS AND ENGLISHMEN – PART II

jasper_johns

As I continued my art journey with my recent trip to London, other galleries I visited were Gazelli, Dover St, where I met the very charming George Barker who took me through the exhibition of photographer Alinka Echeverria. Philip Guston at Timothy Taylor, Carlos Place; John Byrne at The Fine Art Society, Bond Street; and more of Henry Moore at Osborne Samuel, Bruton St. This was a delightful exhibition of smaller works: sculpture, drawings, watercolours, etchings and lithographs. Mossgreen’s Paul Sumner was showing highlights of the Peter Elliott Collection featuring Australian and Asian Art and Tribal Artefacts at Messums, Cork St, to be auctioned in Sydney late August.

I spent a weekend in cold and wet Berlin that simply wasn’t long enough to get a feel for the burgeoning contemporary art scene that Berlin is so famous for.

However I did get to the Hamburger Bahnhof, Museum of Contemporary Art, where my very knowledgeable guide kept me interested with his anecdotal and academic knowledge of the artists we viewed.

Some fascinating early advertising illustrations by Andy Warhol were on show where you could clearly see the genesis of Pop Art. Also, an exhibition by American artist, Elaine Sturtevant, who appropriated images and objects from Andy Warhol, Jasper Johns and Marcel Duchamp – who all appropriated images! There’s a nice irony in her work and while Sturtevant now ranks among the most influential artists of the second half of the twentieth century, recognition has been a long time coming. Lastly I saw outstanding selections of works by Joseph Beuys and Cy Twombly.

The School of Fontainebleau, Cy Twombly
The School of Fontainebleau, Cy Twombly

At the Berlinische Gallery was Radically Modern – Urban Planning and Architecture in 1960s Berlin, a fascinating and comprehensive overview of architectural heritage in both East and West Berlin. This is a wonderful contemporary space, with the upper level reached by two white stairways in the center of the building that cross the area diagonally creating a striking sculptural statement.

Finally, I visited many of the commercial galleries on the Auguststrasse, and among the most memorable exhibitions I saw were Fire and Forget. On Violence at KW Institute for Contemporary Art and River, Michael Lange’s photographic exploration of atmospheric light and water at Alfred Ehrhardt Stiftung.

After an incredible three weeks I left feeling as if I could do it all again very soon!

Jenny Garber
Co-Director inART
www.inart.com.au

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