YARD

Somewhere between The Wasteland and The Hollow Men this journey through the degradation of an urban warzone, an auto graveyard — the no mans land is perhaps the artist’s darkest hour. An unrelenting musing on consumerism, tarnished modernism and post-capitalist excess mesmerises like the unrelenting Wake of Joyce. Daydream-mares transported in idyllic decadence to museum on the ‘desert island’.

The title — Yard — is an old English measurement; a yardstick to measure the state of being or a place to hangout for disaffected youth. A dry, wry humour is still evident in the backwards evolution of the monkey-like/child-like mobiles, the playful palindromes and the art-historical eloquence of the language and visual puns.

But the warning of the twilight world, the theatrical lighting making the world more alluring than the cold light of day. Through the looking glass lies the future — or are we there already? Lit by a dozen mini-suns the outside inside caught in our between world.

Full of messages of perimeters and demarcation, reading meaning in the abstract the artist is inhabiting the Temporary Autonomous Zone of his sub-conscious, imagining art from waste. Patiently waiting for nature to embrace the abandoned landscape — to navigate the immortal plastic and metal with its inexorable tendrils. The modernist logic ends not with a bang but a tarnished mirror.)

 

Gavin Turk

Gavin Turk

 



YARD

Somewhere between The Wasteland and The Hollow Men this journey through the degradation of an urban warzone, an auto graveyard — the no mans land is perhaps the artist’s darkest hour. An unrelenting musing on consumerism, tarnished modernism and post-capitalist excess mesmerises like the unrelenting Wake of Joyce. Daydream-mares transported in idyllic decadence to museum on the ‘desert island’.

The title — Yard — is an old English measurement; a yardstick to measure the state of being or a place to hangout for disaffected youth. A dry, wry humour is still evident in the backwards evolution of the monkey-like/child-like mobiles, the playful palindromes and the art-historical eloquence of the language and visual puns.

But the warning of the twilight world, the theatrical lighting making the world more alluring than the cold light of day. Through the looking glass lies the future — or are we there already? Lit by a dozen mini-suns the outside inside caught in our between world.

Full of messages of perimeters and demarcation, reading meaning in the abstract the artist is inhabiting the Temporary Autonomous Zone of his sub-conscious, imagining art from waste. Patiently waiting for nature to embrace the abandoned landscape — to navigate the immortal plastic and metal with its inexorable tendrils. The modernist logic ends not with a bang but a tarnished mirror.)

The Yard Glass

The broken mirror maze degraded and shattered so it exists as a series of small corners or small barriers. Once proudly installed as a clinical, controlled and controlling architecture, the panels are now coated with distressed paper and the ingress of moisture behind the film. The milky failure of perfect material corrupted with the organic deposits of mildew and spores.

The title as a thinly veiled spoken word play on Duchamp’s Large Glass refers to the eponymous Yard. That place of abandoned things contains the accumulation of human aspiration and cultural failure. Smashed but preserved in a broken form, capitalising on the natural process of nature reclaiming even the most impenetrable of materials. The constituent parts create a mathematical labyrinth drifting apart like icebergs in the space. An ancient symbol now a dotted-line imbroglio. Reflecting back our shattered selves.

 
The Yard Glass
aluminium frame, laminated glass,
mirror film and paper residue
dimensions variable
2015
 
The Yard Glass
aluminium frame, laminated glass,
mirror film and paper residue
dimensions variable
2015

The Yard Glass

The broken mirror maze degraded and shattered so it exists as a series of small corners or small barriers. Once proudly installed as a clinical, controlled and controlling architecture, the panels are now coated with distressed paper and the ingress of moisture behind the film. The milky failure of perfect material corrupted with the organic deposits of mildew and spores.

The title as a thinly veiled spoken word play on Duchamp’s Large Glass refers to the eponymous Yard. That place of abandoned things contains the accumulation of human aspiration and cultural failure. Smashed but preserved in a broken form, capitalising on the natural process of nature reclaiming even the most impenetrable of materials. The constituent parts create a mathematical labyrinth drifting apart like icebergs in the space. An ancient symbol now a dotted-line imbroglio. Reflecting back our shattered selves.

Looking Glass

This semi-transparent, dichroic colour shifting cube is covered in a petrochemical film like a fine oil slick. Oil is simultaneously opaque with its dense luminous black as well as translucent and iridescent when molecular thin. This alluring attractiveness beguiles the eye away from the contents — an accumulation of materials gathered from The Yard. The wasteland through rainbow-coloured spectacles.

Through the Looking Glass lies the hypnotic surreal and strangely compelling world of our own paradox.

 
Looking Glass
glass and mixed media
200 × 170 × 170 cm
2015
 
Looking Glass
glass and mixed media
200 × 170 × 170 cm
2015

Looking Glass

This semi-transparent, dichroic colour shifting cube is covered in a petrochemical film like a fine oil slick. Oil is simultaneously opaque with its dense luminous black as well as translucent and iridescent when molecular thin. This alluring attractiveness beguiles the eye away from the contents — an accumulation of materials gathered from The Yard. The wasteland through rainbow-coloured spectacles.

Through the Looking Glass lies the hypnotic surreal and strangely compelling world of our own paradox.

Tyre Mobile

Swinging slowly in the centre of the gallery this giant recycling plaything feels like a toy from the monkey enclosure at the zoo or from a children’s playground. Alternatively if you look from the corner of your eye you will see more geometric circles and moving abstract forms moving harmoniously through space. Then again perhaps you will be eerily reminded of the strange fruit of Alabama or even more pertinently the rubber necklaces of the African Cape.

 
Tyre Mobile
tyres, scaffold poles and wire
310 × 310 × 250 cm
2015
 
Tyre Mobile
tyres, scaffold poles and wire
310 × 310 × 250 cm
2015

Tyre Mobile

Swinging slowly in the centre of the gallery this giant recycling plaything feels like a toy from the monkey enclosure at the zoo or from a children’s playground. Alternatively if you look from the corner of your eye you will see more geometric circles and moving abstract forms moving harmoniously through space. Then again perhaps you will be eerily reminded of the strange fruit of Alabama or even more pertinently the rubber necklaces of the African Cape.

Pavement

This bronze cast of a pavement painted to look real with all its imperfections. The child poetry found in the cracks and the human marks of chewing gum captured in perpetuity. This work, that makes reference to the modernist logic of displaying ‘work units’ like bricks or panels on the floor (Carl Andre), forms a shrine to the image, to the notion of the artist as a Baudelairean Flâneur, strolling along the pavement, playing a key role in, participating and portraying the city. The cracks in the pavement symbolise the creative process a glimpse through to the sand below. Another island reference symbolizing the students riots of 1968 where the newly empowered youth ripped up the pavements to throw as missiles exposing the sand below ‘Sous les pavés, la plage!’.

 
Pavement
painted bronze
5 × 135 × 360 cm
2008
 
Pavement
painted bronze
5 × 135 × 360 cm
2008

Pavement

This bronze cast of a pavement painted to look real with all its imperfections. The child poetry found in the cracks and the human marks of chewing gum captured in perpetuity. This work, that makes reference to the modernist logic of displaying ‘work units’ like bricks or panels on the floor (Carl Andre), forms a shrine to the image, to the notion of the artist as a Baudelairean Flâneur, strolling along the pavement, playing a key role in, participating and portraying the city. The cracks in the pavement symbolise the creative process a glimpse through to the sand below. Another island reference symbolizing the students riots of 1968 where the newly empowered youth ripped up the pavements to throw as missiles exposing the sand below ‘Sous les pavés, la plage!’.

We Are One

This monumental neon sign broadcasts the number 7,201,964,238; the specific median human population at the time the work itself opened on the 24th January 2014 at 6pm.

Turk’s sign is a symbolic threshold: inviting visitors to transcend through a fixed point in time, a broken clock referring to a historical moment in our exponential growth as a species. Like On Kawara’s date works, here is a recording of the now (passed), a pause for thought captured in the gas of the neon. Electricity passes through the gas in the tube exciting the electrons which convert into photons that light up. The neon light itself is a symbol of consumer culture: alluding to the objects of desire beyond it.

It’s a handwritten sign as if by Mario Merz as part of his Fibonacci series; the geometry and geography of nature repeated in patterned sequences — in plants, seeds, crustaceans and leaf growth. Here encapsulating the human condition. We are one — the individual as part of the masses. The large number equals one.

 
We Are One
blue neon
126 × 850 cm
2014
 
We Are One
blue neon
126 × 850 cm
2014

We Are One

This monumental neon sign broadcasts the number 7,201,964,238; the specific median human population at the time the work itself opened on the 24th January 2014 at 6pm.

Turk’s sign is a symbolic threshold: inviting visitors to transcend through a fixed point in time, a broken clock referring to a historical moment in our exponential growth as a species. Like On Kawara’s date works, here is a recording of the now (passed), a pause for thought captured in the gas of the neon. Electricity passes through the gas in the tube exciting the electrons which convert into photons that light up. The neon light itself is a symbol of consumer culture: alluding to the objects of desire beyond it.

It’s a handwritten sign as if by Mario Merz as part of his Fibonacci series; the geometry and geography of nature repeated in patterned sequences — in plants, seeds, crustaceans and leaf growth. Here encapsulating the human condition. We are one — the individual as part of the masses. The large number equals one.

Piss Paintings

A blue-green splash on a bronze coloured background, caused by oxidised urine on copper-prepared canvas. These elegiac works steal much from previous paintings by Otto Mühl, Hermann Nitsch and other 70s actionists, as well as the great recycler and appropriator of imagery Warhol, who in the early 1980s made a series of Oxidation paintings.

In these works natural processes are combined with the appropriated transgression of using bodily waste, the ultimate form of disposable human rubbish (urine), to make the marks on the canvas.

 
from left
Untitled Anthropomorphic Piss Painting
urine and metallic paint on canvas
163 × 102 cm
2008
Soft Cosmic Piss Painting
urine and metallic paint on canvas
250 × 180 cm
2008
 
from left
Untitled Anthropomorphic Piss Painting
urine and metallic paint on canvas
163 × 102 cm
2008
Soft Cosmic Piss Painting
urine and metallic paint on canvas
250 × 180 cm
2008

Piss Paintings

A blue-green splash on a bronze coloured background, caused by oxidised urine on copper-prepared canvas. These elegiac works steal much from previous paintings by Otto Mühl, Hermann Nitsch and other 70s actionists, as well as the great recycler and appropriator of imagery Warhol, who in the early 1980s made a series of Oxidation paintings.

In these works natural processes are combined with the appropriated transgression of using bodily waste, the ultimate form of disposable human rubbish (urine), to make the marks on the canvas.

Repap Paper Repap Paper

This palindromatic and reflexive artwork consists of four bales of used paper laid out like Robert Morris’s mirror cubes. Four pillars or monuments laid in an architectural absence. Four rooms or four corridors filled with the magical stuff of art. A Poetic cut up of our potential literary brilliance collaged into a sculptural three dimensional Robert Ryman. Modernism’s great project processed into bales. If Dada is the opposite of Modernism, where there is sense there is also nonsense.

 
Repap Paper Repap Paper
paper
140 × 350 × 350 cm
2015
 
Repap Paper Repap Paper
paper
140 × 350 × 350 cm
2015

Repap Paper Repap Paper

This palindromatic and reflexive artwork consists of four bales of used paper laid out like Robert Morris’s mirror cubes. Four pillars or monuments laid in an architectural absence. Four rooms or four corridors filled with the magical stuff of art. A Poetic cut up of our potential literary brilliance collaged into a sculptural three dimensional Robert Ryman. Modernism’s great project processed into bales. If Dada is the opposite of Modernism, where there is sense there is also nonsense.

Lunch on the Grass

This deadpan and droll statement refers of course to the confrontational frisson of Manet’s Le Dejeuner sur l’herbe. This painting, like its similarly-scaled namesake, confronts transgression as well as the boundaries of taste and acceptable behaviour. The negative statement is reminiscent of ‘no smoking’ ‘this is not a pipe’. To understand the painting is to disobey it by going to that which you shouldn’t look at. The painting itself creates a barrier across the paintings surface, telling you not to go beyond the painting but exciting you to go beyond it. Tempting Little Red Riding Hood to not stray beyond the path, it is a landscape painting that tells you that you are not allowed to go into the landscape.

 
Lunch on the Grass
paint on canvas
180 × 250 cm
2015
 
Lunch on the Grass
paint on canvas
180 × 250 cm
2015

Lunch on the Grass

This deadpan and droll statement refers of course to the confrontational frisson of Manet’s Le Dejeuner sur l’herbe. This painting, like its similarly-scaled namesake, confronts transgression as well as the boundaries of taste and acceptable behaviour. The negative statement is reminiscent of ‘no smoking’ ‘this is not a pipe’. To understand the painting is to disobey it by going to that which you shouldn’t look at. The painting itself creates a barrier across the paintings surface, telling you not to go beyond the painting but exciting you to go beyond it. Tempting Little Red Riding Hood to not stray beyond the path, it is a landscape painting that tells you that you are not allowed to go into the landscape.

Smoke Photographs

These epic, human-scale smoke photographs are couched in psychoanalytic terms as if they are Rorschach experiments inviting you to examine your subconscious in your interpretation of the carbon dust floating in plumes through the air.

The pictures reveal the otherwise invisible movements of air with its innate mix of solid, gas and fluid these images create a magicians illusion, freezing movement in a still.

 
from top, left to right
Ego
C-type print
172 × 120 cm
2013
Id
C-type print
172 × 120 cm
2013
Oedipus
C-type print
172 × 120 cm
2013
Parapraxis
C-type print
172 × 120 cm
2013
Superego
C-type print
172 × 120 cm
2013
Totem
C-type print
172 × 120 cm
2013
 
from top, left to right
Ego
C-type print
172 × 120 cm
2013
Id
C-type print
172 × 120 cm
2013
Oedipus
C-type print
172 × 120 cm
2013
Parapraxis
C-type print
172 × 120 cm
2013
Superego
C-type print
172 × 120 cm
2013
Totem
C-type print
172 × 120 cm
2013

Smoke Photographs

These epic, human-scale smoke photographs are couched in psychoanalytic terms as if they are Rorschach experiments inviting you to examine your subconscious in your interpretation of the carbon dust floating in plumes through the air.

The pictures reveal the otherwise invisible movements of air with its innate mix of solid, gas and fluid these images create a magicians illusion, freezing movement in a still.

White Transit Van Compression

The lone cube sits under a light — the surface covered in an anemone of organic folds and wrinkles. A powerful and iconic motorised machine has been crushed like paper into a perfect Modernist cube.

This cuboid was once a cultural icon — a symbol of race and class. White-Van-Man’s steed has been reduced to a single abstract expressionist form. The powerful logistics tool of consumerism now forlornly and whimsically, resting under its spotlight.

 
White Transit Van Compressions
crushed transit van
117 × 65 × 65 cm
2015
 
White Transit Van Compressions
crushed transit van
117 × 65 × 65 cm
2015

White Transit Van Compression

The lone cube sits under a light — the surface covered in an anemone of organic folds and wrinkles. A powerful and iconic motorised machine has been crushed like paper into a perfect Modernist cube.

This cuboid was once a cultural icon — a symbol of race and class. White-Van-Man’s steed has been reduced to a single abstract expressionist form. The powerful logistics tool of consumerism now forlornly and whimsically, resting under its spotlight.

Yard

With the portentous sensibility of a claustrophobic computer game the player/audience is lead around the rubble and detritus of the yard; a mapped-out zone.

The first person perspective of the short film lumbers, slightly laboring through the landscape, drawing the viewer further into the world of post consumer waste in an urban landscape. Man made waste and consumer junk extruded into piles, creating a landscape of plastic, dead cars and metal work. Exploring the wasteland, seeking out the clues in the degraded artifacts, the artist’s oeuvre exists trapped in a world of our own hubris.

 
Yard
video
11 minutes 30 seconds
2015
 
Yard
video
11 minutes 30 seconds
2015

Yard

With the portentous sensibility of a claustrophobic computer game the player/audience is lead around the rubble and detritus of the yard; a mapped-out zone.

The first person perspective of the short film lumbers, slightly laboring through the landscape, drawing the viewer further into the world of post consumer waste in an urban landscape. Man made waste and consumer junk extruded into piles, creating a landscape of plastic, dead cars and metal work. Exploring the wasteland, seeking out the clues in the degraded artifacts, the artist’s oeuvre exists trapped in a world of our own hubris.

Oil Paintings

The congealed, blackened sump oil from the well-worn engine of a transit van is dripped laconically onto the canvas. Something difficult to aquire is sometimes likened to ‘getting blood out of a stone’.

 
from left
Blood Out of a Stone
sump oil on canvas
129 × 93 cm
2015
Oil Spill
sump oil on canvas
120 × 120 cm
2015
 
from left
Blood Out of a Stone
sump oil on canvas
129 × 93 cm
2015
Oil Spill
sump oil on canvas
120 × 120 cm
2015

Oil Paintings

The congealed, blackened sump oil from the well-worn engine of a transit van is dripped laconically onto the canvas. Something difficult to aquire is sometimes likened to ‘getting blood out of a stone’.

Oil Painting

Malevich, in 1915, paints Black Square, which has been referred to as ‘the zero point of painting’; a kind of ultimate. The work, which hangs in the Tretyakov Gallery, Moscow, now one hundred years later is super cracked and attacked by natural erosional processes.

For Oil Painting Turk paints the canvas rectangle with black engine sump oil. This artwork forever destined to remain sticky and treacherous, slowly moving and changing. A fly-paper for bespoiling the dress of whoever steps too close. This painting tempts the viewer to come closer and look onto its surface like a dripping black mirror.

 
Oil Painting
sump oil on canvas
183 × 153 × 65 cm
2015
 
Oil Painting
sump oil on canvas
183 × 153 × 65 cm
2015

Oil Painting

Malevich, in 1915, paints Black Square, which has been referred to as ‘the zero point of painting’; a kind of ultimate. The work, which hangs in the Tretyakov Gallery, Moscow, now one hundred years later is super cracked and attacked by natural erosional processes.

For Oil Painting Turk paints the canvas rectangle with black engine sump oil. This artwork forever destined to remain sticky and treacherous, slowly moving and changing. A fly-paper for bespoiling the dress of whoever steps too close. This painting tempts the viewer to come closer and look onto its surface like a dripping black mirror.

Exhaust Mobile

The mobile as a kinetic sculpture personifying movement and transport is now pendulous and slowly swaying and turning.

The exhaust pipes from vehicles filled with the pure air of the gallery where once they transported the choking fumes from the combustion engine. The internal organ made external — discarded, denatured and rusted.

 
Exhaust Mobile
exhaust pipes and wire
400 × 400 × 240 cm
2015
 
Exhaust Mobile
exhaust pipes and wire
400 × 400 × 240 cm
2015

Exhaust Mobile

The mobile as a kinetic sculpture personifying movement and transport is now pendulous and slowly swaying and turning.

The exhaust pipes from vehicles filled with the pure air of the gallery where once they transported the choking fumes from the combustion engine. The internal organ made external — discarded, denatured and rusted.

Gavin Turk

YARD

 

CCA Andratx, Mallorca

24th July - 15th December

with the generous support of Schott Glass

 

gavinturk.com

 
 

Gavin Turk

YARD

 

CCA Andratx, Mallorca

24th July - 15th December

with the generous support of Schott Glass

 

gavinturk.com