Some members of our group took a trip to London for the day to get some inspiration for our upcoming show, Perception.
As we all had our own personal views and experience from the day, we decided to collate our thoughts and put them all in one post. Myself (Nikki) thought the easiest way to do this would be to create a list of things for each of us to talk about and then I would put it all into one post from all of us as ARTlife.
We planned the route of where we wanted to go before arriving in London (planned route). This made it a lot easier on the day and gave us the chance to see everything we wanted to.
National Portrait Gallery
(click on above image to view National Portrait Gallery Website)
We started at this gallery and went to see the Taylor Wessing Photography exhibition.
We all had mixed feeling about this show in terms of the work and the presentation. Myself and Becky thought it was well presented, all the frames were the same thickness and were black with mounts around the work. We thought the space between the photographs were the same and had enough distance from one another.
Karina however felt that the presentation was poor and that there was too much work in a small space. Nadine agreed with this by saying; “it’s as though when putting up the display they didn’t plan it correctly, they ran out of room and just plonked it anywhere”.
Unfortunately, photography was not allowed in this exhibition, so we took notes on what we thought of the room:
white walls – high ceiling – marble floor – very neutral colours – modern plug sockets on show – lighting slightly dimmed pointed at the work – work displayed on eye level
Karina described the lighting for this exhibition perfectly; “Lighting was a bit dim, which worked really good as the photographs were glossy and covered with glass so there wasn’t much interruption by the reflections”.
We all agreed that the lighting was perfect, it was bright enough to see the work perfectly but it didn’t glare in your face and the work became the focal point as it should.
The rest of the gallery had more of a traditional salon style to it, with rich coloured walls, baroque wallpaper, guilt framed oil painting and dark wood benches. Each floor in the gallery is a contrast to one another, which split the groups views.
Myself and Rebecca really liked the more traditional side of the gallery. Nadine, Karina and Jackie preferred the more contemporary side.
I do think our show is going to be more white wall then traditional. We got more inspiration from the exhibition then the galleries permanent spaces.
Except for one part which myself and Becky saw. In one section there were frames coming off the wall in a triangle shape which I thought was interesting and for that particular room I think were acting as a space saver.
(click on above image to view Hayward Gallery Website)
We all had different expectations from this gallery and different reactions inside.
It’s a shame we couldn’t take photographs though because it was the most interesting in terms of our show.
The room itself was;
small – low ceiling – neutral – spotlights on work – large platform in the middle – well organised
(Nadine’s quick sketch of the exhibition at Hayward Gallery)
What we all agreed with though is that if you happened to be standing under the spotlight it was very bright, which hurt your eyes. This could be because the ceiling was so low but its something we will take into consideration for our show.
I think Nadine described the gallery well in my opinion “As a whole I thought this gallery was absolute shite, this being in terms of it being very small, not much on and not much to see. The Gallery wasn’t THAT easy to find but as a group we got there in the end with the help of mother goose (Nikki).”
The only person to disagree with this was Karina “I was really impressed by the Bauhaus look of this gallery. It’s huge and very nice looking.”
(click above image to view Saatchi Gallery website)
Everyone was looking forward to coming to this gallery and it defiantly did not disappoint.
For me I didn’t realise how big the gallery was it has so many floors and each floor has interesting work. In most places you go to they have amazing work in one gallery space but then poor work in others. This space was outstanding throughout and very well organised.
Becky described the galleries unique qualities in the best way; “there was a vary of types of work and also along with this came different ways to how they were presented. Some of the work were on plinth’s, free-standing, placed on the floor, hung to make it seem like an illusion and even one presented with D.I.Y equipment!”
All these things are what makes the Saatchi gallery stand out from any other gallery. It gives the viewer an experience, an interaction quality that keeps people intrigued to see more. This is a factor we need in our show!
There wasn’t necessarily spotlights on the work, rather the ceiling was a huge cube of light which I thought was very impressive and perfect for the space. There was one room that had dimmed lights that we thought made the room very beautiful and very atmospheric.
They had an exhibition guide that described what was in each gallery space and a map to hep you navigate! This leaflet was very useful and has given us inspiration for our show.
The best aspect of this gallery for me is that I could have spent a whole day there! Its one of the most welcoming galleries I’ve ever been to. Which is very important! And i think the others would agree.
As Becky said; “The Tate Britain was such a grand gallery and had a vary of exhibitions therefore a vary of styles/layouts”.
The group again was split in there views of this gallery. Myself and Becky liked this gallery, with the mix of contemporary and traditional. For me though it reminded me of the National Gallery, Birmingham Museum and Art Galley and Walker Gallery in Liverpool.
Karina however was a little disappointed as there wasnt much there that she was interested in, which Nadine also agreed with.
The layout was very similar to the National Portrait Gallery;
very high ceiling – work on plinths/hanging – low lighting – minimal.
From seeing all these different types of galleries in one day it make it easier to compare. Therefore, it helps more when thinking of things for our own show.
For our own show we have been inspired by different aspects from all the galleries;
white wall space – having the work spaced out – lighting dimmed slightly – having a variety of different works – hiding fixtures i.e plug sockets/wires – keep work at reasonable height – neutral colours – well organised – low ceiling – use of leaflets – little information on plaque – use of plinths – keep it professional
Overall, going to London was very successful for us and we enjoyed the day.
It gave us a great opportunity to be inspired into making our show the best it can be.
At the end of the day our feet were hurting, we were tired and very hungry!
So we went and relaxed in Camden Town before going home!
All Photography done by Nadine, Karina and Becky (Below)