Luc Tuymans - 'The Shore' @ David Zwirner London

Contemporary and Old Art Reviews

Luc Tuymans - 'The Shore' @ David Zwirner London

Postby CAP » Fri Feb 13, 2015 11:17 am

January 30 - April 2, 2015

I mention this show as much for the way I learned of it – via the Phaidon site, of all places – as its refreshingly modest scale. After trawling through some big public gallery blockbusters lately, it’s a relief to find some modest, human scale paintings. And there are just 8-10 of them – I forget exactly – dotted around the walls of Fortress Zwirner.

Old Kool Hand Luc has been in the news for all the wrong reasons lately – the ridiculous plagiarism suit brought against him in Antwerp (his home) and I think like most sane people, I found this outrageously unjust. At most I think his work cites or refers to the photograph in question, at no time does it presume to be the self-same photograph. It is most emphatically and distinctively a painting!

But anyway, brushing all that to one side, the artist is at pains to mention in the Phaidon interview that all works for the new show derive from his own photographs (of painted portraits of Scottish Enlightenment figures, I think, or signatories to The American Constitution) I think taken on his mobile phone and then reprocessed via photocopier or maybe Photoshop. Luc is pretty old school about this stuff. The results are cropped like a passport photo, or maybe a stamp, and the facture is somewhat more relaxed, heavier, as has been the tendency in recent years. Yet they don’t come across as old-masterly or pastiches – they still retain a strangely contemporary brusqueness. If you like Tuymans stuff you will love the show, if you don’t, you will still be wondering what all the fuss is about. I’m not his biggest fan by any means, but in the circumstances I’m recommending this one.

I forget exactly what the title, The Shore, signifies but I think it’s something to do with the recent Scottish referendum – and the fact that Luc was a guest there lately – and Scottish roots in democracy (signatories to the American Constitution, etc). What was I doing on the Phaidon site? I forget now – no wait, I think I was looking to see if there were any plans for a new edition of the Vitamin series on contemporary painting. Never did find out, come to think of it... :roll:
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Re: Luc Tuymans - 'The Shore' @ David Zwirner NYC

Postby jasperjoffe » Sat Feb 14, 2015 10:39 pm

Isn't this in London?
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Re: Luc Tuymans - 'The Shore' @ David Zwirner London

Postby CAP » Sat Feb 14, 2015 11:13 pm

Oops! Thanks for that Jasper!

(I’ve changed the post title to 'Zwirner London' rather than 'Zwirner NYC' for new readers) :oops:

A bit obsessed with NYC at the moment, tracking all sorts of online critical manoeuvres there... :roll:
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