Sunday, 12 October 2008

Gehry and Richter at the Serpentine Gallery

Yesterday I wandered over to see Frank Gehry's pavilion for the Serpentine Gallery exhibition.

It's quietly spectacular. There were lots of people simply sitting in its shade, reading the paper or chatting. Whilst there's plenty to wonder at it doesn't draw attention to itself aimlessly. Rather it turns out to be quite functional - and, with some plywood bits behind either side to house a kiosk and a lift - slightly village fete!

This is in gross contrast to the rubbish on display in the gallery proper. Gerhard Richter's 4900 Colours: Version II...
comprises 196 square panels of 25 coloured squares that can be reconfigured in a number of variations, from one large-scale piece to multiple, smaller paintings. Richter has developed a new version especially for the Serpentine Gallery exhibition... formed of 49 paintings of 100 squares.
This is a shame. I've always felt rather affected by Schwimmerinnen (1965). This exhibition is trite at best. A work of 4 panels, a sort of microcosm of 4900 Colours is on sale at the entrance to the exhibition at £12,000. delicious should feel plagiarised.

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