THE EY EXHIBITION: THE WORLD GOES POP EXHIBITION AT TATE MODERN BANKSIDE LONDON 17TH SEPTEMBER 2015- 24TH JANUARY 2016: REVIEWER LAURENCE HUMPHRIES

This is a major Exhibition at  Tate Modern  of Pop artists rarely unknown in the art world. My initial impression is that this is a serious portrayal of major Pop artists all over the World in including a consideration of artists working and living in Latin  America and countries which were formerly in the Comecon area of influence under Stalinist Hegemony. In many ways I found these pop artists better , and more influential than artists like Andy Warhol and Roy Lichenstein who always avoided serious political matters and mostly concentrated on Trivia particularly with reference to Warhol.

untitledant

fig12(1)

biographysoares

de340431c4f5b5c80181550321a9ea22

Quoting the Tate Booklet ” Mass produced imagery borrowed from popular culture”. [1]. this included artists like Ushido Shinohara , anna maria Maldino and the Brazilian Antina Dias.

” Visceral red, black and white imagery symbolic of the blood and dirt of the urban underbelly”. [2].

Evelyn Axell  (1938-1972) In Valentine ” space represented emancipatory site for women depicts the liberation of the Female body”. [3]. Tadia Yoko in Kisses Kisses with other depictions like Snow white and the Black dwarf and images of Orpheus and Muhammed speaks. Eviliana Gray and Joe Tilson use pictures of the Rich and famous and Tilson uses Richard Nixon in his portrayal of 1972.

page-6-snow-white-black-dwarf-by-joe-tilson-1969-1378155745_b

Eulàlia%20Grau%20-%2004

JoeTilsonSnowhite

70468f372f0d45dc3308593c202358f0

These then are images of models and even Che Guerava  interspersed with printed images of the day . Both Tilson and Gray are able to depict these images with great effect.

” These three dimensional wooden grids echoing the layout of radical magazines of the period. Grau’s 1972 Ethnographies  show how it denounces Spanish society under Franco,s repressive dictatorships in which capitalist consumption was marketed as fulfilling and liberating”. [4].

” By using photomontage these artists are able to address issues including Female sexuality celebrities and political violence and economic equality”. [5] . This  is more potent,  important and effective than anything Warhol would be involved in , proving that this is proper pop art.

The Exhibition is spread over 11-12 rooms and we have only reached Room 3 which highlights Pop politics. Jerry Zielinski (1943-1980) produced a series of pop images directly connected to politics joining him were artists like Marcello Nitsche , in his Kill Fly 1967 , joined By Joan Caredlis ,Jorge Ballestro (1941-2014) with his divine proportion and Raino Reinkamen  in his sketch for US Flag who depicted it in a very political manner unlike the Neo impressionist Jasper Johns who just painted a series of motifs connected to the American Flag. There could be some comparison between the two artists.

biographynitsche

1444089124567

images024YE9TY

equiporealidadthedivineproportion

The last image is a reference to Leonardo Da Vinci and his similar portrayal of man . This time Realdid has done this image to criticise war and Imperialism. A very striking image in my opinion.

As the information at the Gallery confirms ” Reinkamen works representing the condemnation of the Vietnam war are merely intended as a condemnation of the USA and their role in the conflict”. [6]. The artist himself comments ” I was appalled at how one of the richest countries in the world was trying to ravage one of the poorest”. [7].

Teresa Lina Soares a Brazilian living during the Brazilian dictatorship  in Brazil during the 1970’s and 1980’s. ” Soares  juxtaposes war and love both filtered through the mass Media alienating effects showing sexualised human silhouettes and interspersed through fragmented images of warfare”. [8].

the-power-to-learn-what-an-year-old-boy-learned-early-in-life-by-one-carlos-eleazar-1504925742

untitledjz

AD04438_0

america_america_ivam_3

Marcello Nitsche whose images I have already displayed also showed very important political images of Kennedy’s assassination  . ” The idea that the same bullet passed through the US President’s body also injured the Texas Governor John Connolly  was central to the debates around whether gunman Lee Harvey Oswald acted alone”. [9].

Ulrike Ottinger was  another pop artist who lived in Paris from 1962-1968. As the notes from the Tate indicate ” Created paintings influenced by pop art. The works imply that the candidates have become modern objects of worship -war as a game”. [10].

in Room 4 of the exhibition we now see the work Of Cornel Brudascu  from Romania. ” The 1970’s saw Romania open up to international exchange .Counter  culture music and art influences could be experienced through western magazines.  Having become familiar with contemporary American art Brudascu experimented with portraiture , combing representations of family and friends with compositions borrowed from Western sources” [11].

256788404de28a7b2558fd57fc4cff86

140

bernard-rancillac-composition-aux-épées

20120731-RESSOURCES-RANCILLAC-Bernard-dernider-whisky-L300

Much of these  works by  Eastern European artists  can be compared to the Socialist realism work of the Stalin era. ” At the same time works such as youth on a building yard engaged with the official prolecult art of this period”. [12].

Room 5 of the Exhibition shows some of the work of Erro sub titled Pop art at Home .” subverting and remaking of the American dream. Erro stages the invasion of a peaceful American  bourgeois dream by the Viet cong and Maoist troops. These are juxtapositions of imagery from opposing sides of the cold war .A reversal of American Military invasion especially depicted in His American Interior 1 , American Interior 5 and American Interior No 9″. [13]. These are some of my favourite artworks portrayed in  this excellent Exhibition.

ef7899a33fefa61d592acfeede8a310d

20f8dqv

untitlederro

b02193bd378410d034470a4438373e8c

id016

Angela Garcia another artist with her ‘Breathing out’ portrays self destruction. As the notes amplify. ” Garcia’s paintings from the early 70’s struggle for authority in Francoist Spain”. [14]. ” As Spanish women we suffered from double repression .the politics imposed by the dictatorship and the inequality towards women”. [15].

Room 7 & 8 concentrate on Pop Crowds and Pop bodies as well as introducing us to Jana Zebiliski , Henri Cuesco Claudio Tozzi with their Large protest, Grande Manifestation and Multitude.

art03-figura02

Equipo-Crónica-El-realism-socialista-y-el-Pop-Art-en-el-campo-de-batalla-1969-Museo-Nacional-Centro-de-Arte-Reina-Sofia-Madrid-150x150

imagesEC3PAWPL

untitledjb

AD05942_0

2cb8e30bf82dd0e607843269b902a933

Brazilian artists suffered badly at the hands of the Brazilian Military thugs as artists recount. ” In 1968 military regime in Brazil became more and more  notorious  and more oppressive in Sao Paulo and Rio de  Janiero. political protests were a daily occurrence”. [16].

Equippa Cronica , a Spanish collective where mass gatherings represented the greatest threat to Spanish dictator Franco. As the notes recall ” The sequences of manipulated press photographs showing a developing crowd celebrates the possibility of individual action solidifying into collective resistance to the regime”. [17].

Justice-Faith-Hope-and-Peace-BMA-copy_2-600-x-333

14_the-basket-weavers-fixed-520x492

terrazzo-1-in

As the notes explain at the time of the conflict between the great superpowers many artist living under oppressive regimes in pain , Brazil and Eastern Europe reflected these developments in their art work. The notes add ” These works represent the leaders of the two superpowers during the cold war the USA and the Soviet Union. They were made at a time of great tension between the two nations when a 3rd World war seemed necessary “. [18].

Maria Schifano in 1968 produced Comrades Comrades .  ” Spray painted silhoueetes of political protestors holding the Communist symbol of the Hammer and Sickle accompanied by the same political slogan for a fair solution to societies social and political contradictions”. [19].

To conclude I will mention  Dinan Otasevic an artist from Yugoslavia. He was an Anti Stalinist and in 1967 composed a work’ Towards Communism on Lenin’s course’ . ” It was in wood representing the 50th Anniversary of the Bolshevik Revolution .Otasevic had said that his work was a result of opposition to the ruling (Stalinist) Socialist Ideology in Yugoslavia”. [20].

erro_interieur_americain_no_5_d5688183h

American_Interior_No7_Erro_1968

49934800_p_1270977543_thumbnail

AK93D60C28_2B4D_4BDF_B7A0_98C13715E188

This then concludes my review of ‘The world goes Pop’. How superior these pop artists are compared to Warhol and Co. They stand out with their overtly political message criticising Capitalist and Imperialist propaganda and unlike Jeff Koons and Andy Warhol are serious about Socialist Liberation having experienced Capitalist and popular culture providing some interesting messages. I particularly liked Erro with his pastiches on Maoism and the  Chinese variety of Stalinism. Very effective art work. I would strongly recommend that anyone who hasn’t seen this  Exhibition go and see it. The Exhibition is open until January 24th.

FOOTNOTES

1) TATE BOOKLET

2) DITTO

3) TATE MODERN

4) TATE MODERN BOOKLET

5) DITTO

6) DITTO

7) DITTO

8) DITTO

9) DITTO

10) DITTO

11) TATE MODERN

12) TATE MODERN BOOKLET

13)  DITTO

14)  DITTO

15)  DITTO

16)  DITTO

17)  DITTO

18)  DITTO

19)  DITTO

20)  DITTO

Advertisements

3 thoughts on “THE EY EXHIBITION: THE WORLD GOES POP EXHIBITION AT TATE MODERN BANKSIDE LONDON 17TH SEPTEMBER 2015- 24TH JANUARY 2016: REVIEWER LAURENCE HUMPHRIES”

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s