It must seem to the readers of Iconophilia that I have an obsession with the floor plane. But here’s a thing. There’s no way you can look at the installation of Quentin Sprague’s current exhibition at tcb (until 2nd April) without giving some time to an interpretation of the linoleum floor. That is, before you attempt to engage with the works of art. And then you’ll have to mentally Photoshop it away (and all the connotations it evokes, of institutional dining rooms, of Hay Plains service stations, of, you tell me…) before you can attend to the works themselves. But first you have to look very closely, to make sure the artist hasn’t sneakily integrated the design…
But no, there’s no alignment to the past history of the room. There is, however, all kinds of suggestive alignments to the recent past of art history. Thus the limitations of such art experienced as mere reproduction. So what have we missed?
What were they like? Is crossing open ground a form of homage to Lucio Fontana’s Spatial Concept paintings, or was there something else happening, when experienced face-to-face? So who would like to write about this show, to talk us through it?
(crossing open ground, 2010-11, enamel on Aluminium, gunshots, wood. photo: Christian Capurro)
PS. QS is a contributor to Iconophilia.