26.03.17 - 18.06.17
ACTION, CAMERA! presents two distinct and separately curated solo shows, thematically linked by a fascination with the camera - or rather, the lack thereof. ION BÂRLĀDEANU and ALAN CONSTABLE have never been previously exhibited in Britain, where they are now represented exclusively by The Gallery of Everything.
The makeshift open-air studio of ION BÂRLĀDEANU was first discovered in a back-alley in Bucharest, Romania. Yet its proprietor, a modest and clandestine collagist, was unprepared for the visibility and success which swiftly descended upon his secret art-making practice.
As social commentary, BÂRLĀDEANU’s satirical anti-communist and anti-capitalist assemblages reveal a wry sense of humour and sharp political savvy. Their brilliance, however, is down to their maker’s visual flair, where impossible eye-lines and one point perspective coincide effortlessly with the high-gloss, the pornographic and the surreal.
BÂRLĀDEANU describes himself as a maverick film director. In these, his movie-stills, he rules roost, setting world-famous actors and political big-wigs against each other, and primarily for his own amusement. At the tender age of 71, it is clear ION BÂRLĀDEANU has only just begun. [ READ MORE ]
For the curious hands of ALAN CONSTABLE, there is little difference. The silent childhood hobby, the sustained studio career, both reflect his one abiding focus: the possibility of the camera.
As a teenager, CONSTABLE would salvage cereal boxes to craft reconstructions of his favourite optical gadgets. Today these tools are transformed. The ceramic sculptures for which he is renowned sit, majestic and collapsed, eyeing the world around them with their primary, pastel and silvery glazes.
It is the metaphor which compels us to touch them. For as CONSTABLE’s sight diminishes, so his fascination with the way we see intensifies. His objects are talismans. They challenge us and the meaning of our sight, at a time when perception is defined by a digital lens. [ READ MORE ]