Look at contemporary artists who revisit ‘landscape’ genre to offer insights into modern society.

JOHN VIRTUE

Works only in black and white (shellac, black ink, white acrylic paint) finds colour an unnecessary distraction.

Omits London Eye from skyline, Sharma (the guardian.com) posits that Virtue dislikes this landmark as it represents detachment from the city and his pictures aim to depict a ‘warts and all’ feel of it; “instead of a tourist fantasy, there is a place”.

The monochromatic palette strongly evokes the visceral, grimy feel of London that aligns with my own view of the capital (exciting to visit, but great to come home again). I like the way he has simplified the subject but that there is a feeling that the detail is there but obscured. This is similar to the silhouetted foregrounds in some of my cloud sketches that I find really striking.

Landscape No.664, 2003 (gac.culture.gov.uk)

Landscape No.662, 2003 (gac.culture.gov.uk)

PAUL NOBLE

Long term project, expanding imaginary allegorical town ‘Nobson Newtown’, an ‘ironic reference to the suburban “new towns” dreamed up by early 20th century British city planners and built throughout England until 30 years ago’ (Hoptman, 2002:69). Extremely detailed, pencil drawings, buildings are 3D representations of letters and literally spell out the function of the buildings.

I find these works bleak and cynical (I assume that is the desired effect though). I’ve watched several films of Noble in his studio- itself a bleak setting to spend time in. I think this is deliberate since the soundtracks are highly discordant and uncomfortable. I can appreciate the incredible amount of time that has been expended here, and the detail is intricate, but I find the work contrived and slightly juvenile, especially the so-called turd-men who inhabit this world.

Public Toilet, 1999 (Tate.org)

Mall, 2001-02 (MoMA.org)

Nobspital, 1997-98 (Hoptman 2002:75)

Bibliography

http://www.gac.culture.gov.uk/work.aspx?obj=32190, accessed 25/11/17

Hoptman, L (2002) Drawing Now: Eight Propositions, New York: The Museum of Modern Art.

http://www.tate.org.uk/sites/default/files/styles/grid-normal-12-cols/public/images/noble_public_toilet_0.jpg?itok=40-zGU8h, accessed 25/11/17

https://www.moma.org/collection/works/87812, accessed 25/11/17

https://www.theguardian.com/artanddesign/2005/feb/28/art, accessed 25/11/17

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