Louise Bourgeois: Turning Inwards, Hauser & Wirth Somerset

5 Nov 2016- Louise Bourgeois: Turning Inwards, Hauser & Wirth Somerset.

Louise Bourgeois, The Smell of Eucalyptus (#2).
Louise Bourgeois, The Smell of Eucalyptus (#2).

Louise Bourgeois was a varied, prolific, and accomplished artist. Artist in every sense of the word, she owned it. She had around 75 years to hone her craft. I am not sure that this generation of artists will get that kind of mileage in their own art production.

I am probably more aware of her sculptural work, such as the large bronze Spider, 1996, that got her a lot of publicity, especially in 2007, when she showed Maman at Tate Modern, London.

Louise Bourgeois, Spider.
Louise Bourgeois, Spider.

What was very timely for me to see were her lovely minimal etchings, since I have recently had an intro to etching workshop. In her 90s, only a few years away from her death, and she was still producing such relevant work. What was helpful for me, was seeing her mark making, and that it was quite minimal and gestural. I had struggled with ridiculous ideas that I needed to be more representational in my etchings.  I have no idea why, perhaps it is just the examples we tend to see, which was why it was refreshing to see Bourgeois work.

Louise Bourgeois, Swaying.
Louise Bourgeois, Swaying.
Louise Bourgeois, The Fall.
Louise Bourgeois, The Fall.

I do wish that this show had some of her artists’ books. I have only seen these online, and am very curious about them as objects.

The gallery also has a ‘book lab’ that gives space to print and books and the importance they have on arts practice. I was somewhat underwhelmed, but I think I have missed something here, otherwise my bookshelves at home might prove to be more interesting.

 

Advertisements