Thursday, 6 April 2017

coloured glass in a white cube

It's strange how the inner experience of the individual has an intense effect on the things that the view, the experiences that they have. We were visiting a friend who's having a bad time, and took her out briefly to the White Cube in Bermondsey. Earlier that day I'd checked what was showing and spotted Josiah McElheny's The Crystal Land, which looked rather lovely, in a glassy perfected future kind of way.

But we went into the gallery and found huge hessian and recovered wood conglomerations, tattered old photos, depressing school desks and vast miserable hangings made of pungent leather. It was intense, artistically, but also depressing, and we had to cut and run before we made it out of the North galleries and into the glittering, glassy south.

I returned, later that day, to see if the crystal and delight was there, and it was, in the next galllery along, glitter, glamour, glass, delight all tantalisingly just out of reach like all proper utopian gardens, which you may dream of or visit, but only sometimes.

The experiemental film at the heart of the exhibition imaginess an exlusive spa concealed beneath a grassy mound in a wonderful garden, where initiates can bathe in light intensely coloured by vivid glass windows. The film was showing in a dark room lit only by gallery light passing in through square glass contruction bricks.

The film is called The Light Club of Vizcaya, and the garden it is set in exists, in Miami. The gardens of Vizcaya are already spectactular, dripping with orchids and statues. But this piece hints at a different way to develop your home and garden, through creating in its looser elements fictional spaces that act as extensions for the mind, underlaying and overtopping our ambitions with things that are impossible, impractical, absurd and intriguing.

It might help, to populate your space in this way, accessibly, where it can be stumbled upon daily, without quest or effort you can find these stories you can follow and spaces you can explore, and at their heart health, light, brihtness, brilliance and beauty.

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