Stroll through the streets of Turin or look out from the city’s rattling trams and you’re confronted with wall after wall of windows framed by whatever architectural embellishments were fashionable at the time of construction, from the standard shutters of residential apartment blocks to ornate neo-classical gods and gargoyles on civic buildings.
On Thursday 16th November a group of local government dignitaries, representatives of the Canary Wharf Group PLC and arts professionals from the Henry Moore Foundation assembled in in a well-known cigar and jazz venue in Canary Wharf to celebrate the return of Old Flo.
These dark winter months, when accounts of inappropriate advances are rocking Westminster and Hollywood, are the perfect time for seeking light and sanity in the clean-cut, calm glamour of fashion photographer Louise Dahl-Wolfe.
Auguste Rodin (1840-1917) was the consummate commercial artist. He devised a formula for making lots of money out of his work long before Andy Warhol proclaimed “Being good in business is the most fascinating kind of art”.
For an artist whose career is based on confronting the spaces we either ignore or deliberately avoid, the now-demolished BBC office that reputedly inspired Room 101 in George Orwell’s 1984 is perfect subject-matter.
Art is Comic, billed as a light-hearted response to terror, is the latest exhibition to embrace rough, industrial brickwork as the perfect backdrop for popular artists with hundreds of thousands of followers and an outwardly casual attitude towards failing politics and social injustice.
“Matisse in the Studio” does not deliver the sensational overdoses of colour and the full-on confrontation with genius of the Tate blockbusters, but there is a place for this more digestible insight into the transformative way Matisse saw based on examining his use of “objets d’art” as inspiration.
On the whole, the curators have given the works the space they need and brought a coherent approach to displaying them in relation to each other, which provides the viewer with a largely satisfying experience.
Following in Fitzgerald’s Footsteps: Brian Docherty reviews Ruth Valentine’s small but politically significant and beautifully illustrated new collection from Hercules Editions