Tuesday, 8 November 2011

Transparent Process-Untitled Gallery

There is another exhibition at the Untitled Gallery at the back of the Quaker's Meeting House in Manchester. It is lodged somewhere up a back alley in the middle of Albert Square and the Midland Hotel. It is hard to find but worth a visit to experience what a 'non-scene' gallery looks like. The Metallicaesque branding is a little crap to say the least and it belies the quaint and titchiness aspect of the gallery. The gallery is what I assume what used to be a storage room that is about 20 feet in length and 5 foot in width. The room is stark and is painted in the usual and obligatory whitewash. There is no natural daylight with having no windows and is light adequately enough with strip lights.

I have been in here before sometime at the the beginning of summer to see a non-descript illustration exhibition that I have almost forgotten but was taken in by the ambience of the room. That was what made me go to the place on a very autumnal night with the wind and rain drenching the street. I peeked into the gallery and went straight to the bar for the complimentry white wine, smiled and nodded to the extras and went back to the show.

The artist that was showing is Namhee Kwon, a Seoul installation artist who works with light and site specific ideas. She previously had a show in London with the same work in 2010 and now ahd the chance to travel up here and have a go in Manchester. She is pleasant enough and I had quite a good chat with her and I asked about the process and costings of the pieces that she had made.

As you can see, the light installations are very minimal and in the vein of Naumann and of course, Tracey Emin. I think Kwon's work is very subtle, and not in a patronising way and very ethereal. They have an almost dreamlike-papery aspect to them and are very effective. This gallery would look abysmal if it was presented with salon style paintings and with being so small, these lights looked perfect. with the work being minimal, it opened the gallery up and made the viewer focus on whatever perceptions entered the subconscious. It made the room a piece of art instead of having art on a wall and the room being an avatar for the work.

I am interested in neon work and would love to make just one piece to show that I have been able to fulfil the process. As stated by the artist, the process in much cheaper in South Korea than it is over here with quotes starting at £200- for one word.. I will do some neon work though but in just time.

There was three more pieces of work which included photocopies of tickets from some shows but they seemed to be fillers for the room. They did gel I suppose but the only drawback is that she should've kept with her instinct and just show the light-work. Too much fluff in a show can be distracting and with the light-work being refined and minimal, that should have been enough. In all though it was a fine way to distract me from the pouring run on a wet Friday night.

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