Tag Archives: review

Russian unorthodox: Malevich

Malevich is almost rediscovered! His book,”Non-objective World” paints a surprising contemporary vision of art.  I like the idea of prescribing a dose of Cubism to died in the wool Cezannista.  I discovered a book by Noah Charney, “The Art Thief” which features Malevich in counterfeit form.  Having worked on the problem of counterfeit drugs, the parallels with art are thought-provoking.  But perhaps Frey might say there are no fakes, only poor copies.

Malevich reflects a mode of thinking popular at the time (like Picasso’s Cubism emering out of relativity theory), with a new way of looking at the world.  Bertrand Russel’s Principles of Mathematics led with a logical underpinning of mathematics, picked up by others such as Frege and we find ourselves here today.

Malevich to me seems to be anticipating modern physics of superstrings, branes and Neil Turok’s Endless Universe.  There is much to learn about the unreality of the world and the importance of artists in helping us visualise this.

Rothko @ Tate Modern

The Rothko exhibit is a bit of a disappointment.  Perhaps too many pieces, so people trying to figure out which painting will give them the spiritual experience they’re supposed to have.

I found the forensic part of the exhibit unpleasant, and to some extent unhelpful.  My reaction is almost, “so what”.  One painting was hung so you could walk around it and see the back.  Maybe some people found that useful, I thought Rothko would have probably puked.

The works on paper, though, were wonderful and displayed with sympathy.  They provoke, as did the small sketches Rothko did for other paintings.

Overall, as someone who keeps asking, “what was Rothko thinking”, when I look at his work, I left thinking, “what was the Tate thinking?…”