Tuesday 29 September 2015

Review by Dips Patel of Agnes Martin’s exhibition at Tate Modern

Tate Modern: 3 June – 11 October 2015

A recent exhibition I toddled off to gawp at of a morning that left me dazed and overwhelmed was of Agnes Martin. I will readily admit I’d never heard of her until I read a review of the exhibition in The Guardian and thought, “oh aye, I likes the look of that I do,” so I went!

Abstract work with a very very limited visual language (predominantly straight lines with very subtle, at times barely visible, washes of extremely pale colours: just blue, red and yellow with subtle variations on white in some pieces) and scale ranges from the very small-scale, almost intimate studies and drawings to the 6 feet square canvas' that just envelope your vision when you give them the chance, she really was an incredible artist and lived a proper independent life.
In her later life, she developed schizophrenia and produced a series of paintings which she produced as a means of helping her deal with what was happening to her. In the exhibition they were put in their own room, collectively called The Islands and I spent the best part of an hour just in that room alone. If you ever get the chance and you're somewhere close that's got her work on show, go see it cos it's just magnificent. (I even bought the exhibition catalogue after, which I rarely do as they are usually prohibitively expensive!)

I give it all this praise, but then you might look at it and think 'Dip, you are full of it!' C'est la vie, qui est de l'art! I thought it was awe-inspiring anyway…

About the reviewer
Dips Patel is a graduate in Graphic Design which means he can colour in without going over the lines and when he does he makes it look deliberate, cool and edgy. He much prefers fine art where the art of talking nonsense is finer still allowing him extremely moderate success in introducing his work to a wider audience. Hobbies include reading stuff, watching stuff, commendably misguided attempts at painting stuff and consuming copious amounts of coco pops, clementines, curries, cakes and cocktails, not all at the same time which is frowned upon in polite society.

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