Thursday, 6 June 2013

Gary Hume - Tate Britain

Gary Hume is at Tate Britain until 1 September 2013.
Gary Hume, Magnolia Door Eleven, 1989
Around 1987/8 Gary Hume made (as I thought then, and do so now) some perfect paintings: the 'Doors'. The large monochrome paintings were modelled on a pair of swing doors with porthole windows in St Bartholomew's Hospital. As recounted by Thomas Lawson in Gary Hume: Door Paintings (2008) Modern Art Oxford: The canvas was divided in half vertically, with a circle and a rectangle floating in each half... The graphic elements are drawn, then filled with colour, layer upon layer of high gloss house paint in those neutral off-whites designed to bring a sense of elegance to domestic interiors... As Hume says: "I found that gloss paint suited me entirely, and its qualities still intrigue me. It's viscous and fluid and feels like a pool. It's highly reflective, which means there are layers of looking." (p6)
Rather brilliantly visitors enter the Tate's exhibition through a pair of giant, pink, Hume doors.
Gary Hume, How To Paint A Door, 2013 (?) - Tate Britain
Hume was, perhaps, trapped for a while by the success of the doors: however, he has since forged a highly distinctive style of glossy paintings which hover between representation and abstraction. The Tate exhibition shows a selection of his work  from the last twenty years.
Read reviews by Waldemar Januszczak, Laura Cumming and Richard Dorment.
Gary Hume, Tony Blackburn, 1994
Gary Hume, Blackbird, 1988
Gary Hume, The Moon, 2009
Gary Hume, The Cradle, 2011
Gary Hume, Anxiety and the Horse. Angela Merkel, 2011
Gary Hume, Red Barn Door, 2009

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