Thursday, 28 September 2017

Bankside Gallery - and the Blavatnik Wing of Tate Modern

Thursday 28 September 2017

Today Linda and I visited the Bankside Gallery, a few steps west of Tate Modern.  It is home to both the Royal Society of Painter-Printmakers and the Royal Society of Watercolourists.

At the moment, it is displaying the results of its national original print competition, in the cool white space which is its gallery.  It was a 'no photographs' visit, but you can see some examples of the amazing work here.  We saw pictures which were monochrome, and also many that ere brightly coloured.  We know about screen prints and woodcuts (both represented here) but there were also photo etchings, monoprints, linocuts, digital etchings.  The subject matter was equally varied.  There were landscapes, both realistic and abstract;  there were difficult pictures of suffering faces and contorted shapes; and there were some very funny items.  Jenny Wiener's 'Due Diligence', which you can see here, made us laugh, as it considers all the precautionary measures which should be triggered after a small girl enters a bears' house without consent. We enjoyed Martin Langford's Art Talk', too.
 Since admission is free, and they have very good cards and books in their shop, I think it makes sense to go in every time one is in the area;  but it did not detain us for more than an hour so we also visited the new  (well, newish) bit of tate Modern.

We found we could not get in via the Turbine Hall, because they were working to complete Superflex, which is due to open very soon, and should be colourful.  We are among the people who did walk around Ai WeiWei's shells before they were roped off as unsafe, so we look forward to walking on these coloured strips.

But mainly we went up to the top floor, having had great difficulty in persuading the lift to do more than zoom up to 5 and then come down to 0 without pause.  It was worth it, however, as the views are spectacular in almost every direction, the exception perhaps being the ugly block of luxury apartments which is being built.



We didn't feel we could cope with one of the several big exhibitions which are on at the moment, so we merely gazed at what was on the landings and stairwells. And we paused, but did not participate, at Tate Exchange, where we were invited to make slip pottery and follow the process through from weighing the clay to the finished product.

How lucky we are to live in a town with such interesting art galleries available to us at any time we choose to visit.

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