Arts Radar: 18th January

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In such a turbulent world it can be calming to focus on the constants and the certainties - the first initial of the next hurricane name, or the fact that Lily Allen’s career will never truly end, for instance. This week, we’re taking solace in the constant comfort of art and its ability to numb the unending horrors of reality. Come sedate yourself with a bitta help from otherworldly sculptures, spooky paintings, and some very large feet, naturally.
Usually when images of footprints in the sand are replicated and turned into massive rugs it’s to do with some sort of annoying wedding proposal. But, luckily, romance is dead and these huge feet are actually just part of Polly Apfelbaum’s latest exhibition of textiles and ceramics. Expect much funtimes, of the colour and scale variety.
If you’ve ever wondered what The Borrowers would look like if they had access to broadband and bongs then you’re in luck, because Paola Ciarska has made some colourful gouache works that appear to be just that. Through painting the homes of her mates and relatives from Newcastle and Gateshead, the Polish artist makes (non-YouTube) comments on popular culture and online identity.
Chalk and cheese would be a match made in heaven for the six international artists participating in this group exhibition. The focus of the show is about exploring materials by putting them together in strange and unexpected ways, to highlight their physical properties. Many of the combinations shouldn’t work, but do. Like pasta and ketchup, right?
This one's for the David Lynch fans who love a bit of 'creepy meets dreamy'. Things to expect include a buff Baywatch-worthy lifeguard ignoring a man literally getting strangled to death by an anaconda and youts using camcorders to document what looks like a calm moonlit scene, but is actually a symbolic depiction of a local murder. All from the comfort of a plush Mayfair townhouse. Ain’t art great?
If sculpture is a dish best served bloody massive, and is supposed to leave you feeling unsure whether to be intrigued or sick, then Julia Crabtree and William Evans deserve a Michelin star. Actually, two. The duo’s installation touches upon biological and evolutionary themes, featuring upholstery, glasswork and strange little creations that look suspiciously contagious.
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