Picasso Baby

The Dot Project, Picasso Baby
Feb 01 – Mar 18 

Last Saturday I made my way from the Philip Pearlstein exhibition at the Saatchi Gallery, to The Dot Project in Fulham Road- a walk that should take an easy 20 minutes, but was marred by the miserable London rain that found its way inside my boots and socks! By the time I showed up at this beautiful little Chelsea gallery I was soaked.

I was soon cheered up by the bright artworks in Picasso Baby, an exhibition of four emerging contemporary London artists. Otto Ford, Morgan Ward, Gordon Berger, Florence Sweeney,  curated by Natasha Arselan, the AucArt pioneer that brings emerging artists to auction and thus to market.

The artworks draw a parallel with Picasso’s most famous period – the Blue Period (1901-1904) which followed the suicide of his close friend Carlos Casagemas and saw him relocate from Paris to Spain. Despite the somber nature of the artistic context, what we see here isn’t a Picasso-esque display of despair, but a celebration of the uncertain period of the beginning of an artist’s career through the lens of art in the digital age. This is the age of a constant stream of images, accessible to anyone and everyone 24/7.

Each artist involved captures the spirit of the exhibition in their own special way. Otto Ford had me up close and personal with the canvas trying to decipher if it was expertly laid paint or digital (answer: it was digital, but still expert) and Gordon Berger had me staring at his painterly television screens for an age. Morgan Ward negotiates the space in and out of the canvas with her abstract forms, and Florence Sweeny takes the colour blue and scrunches it on the wall- refusing to conform to the traditional four corners of the canvas. Each one explores the notion of the picture plane, taking it deeper and subverting the very essence of traditional art and questioning whether the images on our screens can ever really take over.

And hey, if you can’t make it to the exhibition how about you just check out the artists online 😉

 

 

 

Morgan Ward, Untitled, Oil and Acrylic Wash on Canvas and Board

 

 

Otto Ford, Pablo in Pieces, Digital Painting, Archival Ink, Photo Rag, 200 x 150 cm, 2018

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And now to finish, here is Jay Z with Picasso Baby, a song he performed at Pace Gallery in July 2013 starring Marina Abramovic (performance is on youtube) AKA “the day that performance art died” (according to the critics)

 

 

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