Another Minimalism: Art After California Light and Space
Exhibition 14 November 2015 – 21 February 2016
Uta Barth (Germany), Larry Bell (US), Carol Bove (Switzerland), Sarah Braman (US), Tacita Dean (UK), Olafur Eliasson (Denmark), Sam Falls (US), Jeppe Hein (Denmark), Robert Irwin (US), Ann Veronica Janssens (UK), Spencer Finch (US), James Welling (US)
Curated by Melissa E. Feldman
Bringing the work of a select group of current-generation artists together with that of two pioneers of West Coast American minimalism, this exhibition examines the impact of California Light and Space art on artists working today.
Robert Irwin and Larry Bell are two of California’s best-known artists. In this exhibition, two of their signature objects – one of Irwin’s iconic discs and a Larry Bell cube – signal the radical and ground-breaking art made in California in the 1960s and 70s.
Taking inspiration from this art, works by the more contemporary artists in the exhibition explore the perceptual and psychological aspects of seeing in optically inventive forms, structures, spaces, images and narratives. Some works cause profound shifts in our perception by the simplest and most transparent of means – coloured light gels, mist, the deployment of after images. Others use tinted glass, mirror, resins and highly-coloured metals.
Two films engage the viewer in a subtle exploration of perception and the slowing down of time, while photographs use light as both subject matter and material. Together the artists in this exhibition, like those associated with California Light and Space, embrace the temporal and unstable nature of subjective experience. These are the very ways in which California’s minimalism differed from the literalness, pure objecthood, and materiality of New York’s.
Supported by The Idlewild Trust
There is a free informal tour of the exhibition every Saturday afternoon at 2pm. Just drop in.
Curator’s Talk Melissa E. Feldman
Guest curator Melissa Feldman talks through the thinking behind Another Minimalism with Fiona Bradley, Director of The Fruitmarket Gallery.
Panel Discussion ‘Seeing is Forgetting the Name of the Thing One Sees’: Light and Space Then and Now
Artist Neil Clements (Glasgow) and art historians James Boaden (University of York) and Lucy Bradnock (University of Nottingham) discuss the critical reception and legacy of Light and Space art, considering cultural and geographical contexts, issues of authorship and labour, material practices and phenomenological experience. Chaired by Fiona Anderson (University of Newcastle
Talks and Events
We offer a range of resources suggesting creative activities inspired by the exhibition. The Exhibition Guide is a leaflet introducing the exhibition and is available in the Gallery and downloadable below. Learning Resources help teachers and community group leaders explore the exhibition in the Gallery and back home. A free Activity Sheet is also available for families and primary school groups to enjoy the exhibition.
We are delighted to publish this new book in which Melissa E. Feldman investigates and celebrates the legacy of California Light and Space, using it as a new lens through which to view the work of some of the most exciting artists currently working. Available from The Fruitmarket Gallery bookshop or Reaktion Books.