Arts Radar: 15th February
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To break up the time you spend monotonously scrolling through things to distract yourself from the monotony of real life - all aboard the irony train - let’s play a game (not of the Saw III variety). It’s called ‘Guess Which Artist Did What’, and you don’t even need to leave the app to play. Laziness ftw. One of the following artists was in the army for more than ten years, one had a piece voted ‘Ugliest Sculpture in Chicago’ and one is the son of the epic Phyllida Barlow. Go forth and figure.
American artist Nancy Rubins creates sculptures that suggest an alternate universe where Noah’s Ark actually ended up hitting a massive underwater landmine (that existed for purposes of this metaphor), promptly exploded and sent those perfectly-matched pairs of animals flying in all directions. The results are industrial-sized statements of pure audacity.
Mans is eighty-one years old, self-taught, and smashing the painting game, so you should be up for seeing this show even before we start waxing lyrical about the freeing quality of his paintings. And as ever, Camden Arts Centre has your back on elevating the entire experience: they’ve created a Spotify playlist to accompany the exhibition, so get your earbuds in and Art Hat on.
Eddie Peake’s paintings are so bloody psychedelic, it’s like someone shredded up a mantis shrimp and sprayed the remains using a can of Silly String. The British artist also treats us to his urban installation featuring hair gel and decks, as well as an online radio show broadcast right from the gallery by '90s pirate radio station Kool FM.
Amanda Moström is a playful devil and wants to take you down with her to Hell’s playground. By tearing up the gallery rulebook with its ultimate golden ‘you can’t touch dis’ rule, Moström presents a new exhibition of interactive works that explores the body’s presence and its urges to touch things, in a whimsical and energetic way. Don't be shy now, we know how much you're into the whole touching thing.
The use of the traditional ink-blending technique in Zhu Wei’s iconic paintings make his wry comments on the state of Chinese society even wryer. By refusing to jump on the contemporary ‘political pop art’ bandwagon, Wei is an anarchic trailblazer in that he manages to authentically return to his roots as well as earn the status of true rebel. You won’t achieve the same glory by going to see his show, but it’s a start.