Reviews of Next Wave exhibition

10 October 2016

Read what a visitor and a Curator have to say about our 'Next Wave' show:

Alberto Condotta

Review 1 by Radhika Anand, Volunteer Archive Assistant

I recently visited the 'Next Wave' exhibition (on display until 5.00pm Saturday 15 October), which collates a selection of fresh, exciting artworks by emerging and early-career artists. The artists demonstrate great skill in the diversity of work, which ranges from paintings and sketches to mixed media and digital art.

I was very intrigued by the series of works by Caroline Ali RBSA, called ‘Sims Study with Magnifying Lens’. I liked her innovative method of using a small magnifying lens over an original pen and ink sketch by the Edwardian artist Charles Sims, which she developed to create a different viewpoint. Figures are formed from roughly sketched lines, often broken, creating an almost hasty feel. The contrast between the harsh lines that creates form can be compared to the soft, smudges of graphite that portray shading. The large amount of white negative space around the sketch summons the viewer to peer closely to interact with the detail of the small-scale graphite pieces.

The piece ‘Between’ by Alberto Condotta is a digitally modified photograph with two tears over the trees in its forefront, which interestingly exposes the walls on which the work is displayed. The perspective is unusual as it looks down on the scene in the park in which the darkness of the trees contrasts with the illuminated orange and blue objects. Using such bright colours in the photograph evokes a positive feeling, but the juxtaposed darkness and emptiness of the scene could suggest that this is to lure the viewer into a false sense of security. The pixelated effect also adds to the eeriness of the mood, as the details of the image appear quite hazy and unclear.

The mixed media piece, ‘reflections on ______ ’ by Anna Lorenz NWA, interested me because of its composition. The artist presents a glass box on a plinth, which is half-full of small, square pieces of paper cut out from a series of lists that are used within the artist’s working process. The remaining paper is mounted on a mirror on the wall and is fascinating to observe, as it displays the shell from which these small pieces of paper have appeared to break free. I liked the way that the separation of the pieces of paper transforms the meaning of the lists, but the remaining excess paper reminds you of its original context.

I was so inspired by the variety of techniques and materials used in the artists’ work, drawing on both traditional and contemporary methods. Each piece in the exhibition was so different and it was exciting to explore the ideas and meanings behind the work of emerging artists. I would encourage others not to miss out by going to see the wide range of thought-provoking artworks that are on display at the Next Wave exhibition.


Review 2 by Jennifer Pardoe NWA and Next Wave Curator

Jennifer wrote a review for her employer's blog. Read it here.