Review: Fabienne Audeoud – No to Crucifixions

 

 

It has been quite a busy couple of weeks, and as not-so-promised I tried to write here more often, but I didn’t. Again, no real excuses to that, and actually I have been writing a review which I ended up not publishing for some reason (it will probably be published at some point anyway, as a late after-show review).
Anyway.

Today I am here to talk about the latest exhibition at KARST: Fabienne Audeoud’s ‘No to crucifixions’. It opened on the 10th of February, with an evening performance and will shut its doors on the 11th of March.
Unfortunately, I was not present for the opening, but I can tell you about the show.

screen-shot-2017-01-05-at-16-39-35-copy

Before I start, I have to say that I am constantly amazed by how KARST’s space can take any shape imaginable. It feels like this space has a magical ability to transform itself depending on the show it is hosting. It can be huge like it was for The Earth is Our Radio or appear smaller with an underground-like feeling like in F*** Newton…

This time the gallery appears large, open and crowded. Not in an anxiety-provoking manner, but in a way making the visitor feel greeted into the show by a bunch of well-dressed (inanimate) mannequins.

In the space where these statue-like figures welcome you, many things are happening. Mannequins, not only, but also colours, clothes, textures, styles, accessories, faces on see-through canvasses, paintings and bottles of perfume.

On the mannequins, different outfits and styles are pictured which, as various as they might be, refer to a certain socio-economic background, to a stereotype of conservative and – often- religious upper-class; but as you progress through the space and walk between these styled figures, some silhouettes show details which either exaggerate or directly contrast with the portrait drawn here. Overflown jewellery, paint stains, ripped clothes and statements such as “self realisation”, “recognition”, “intime de la honte” express detachment from this uniformity required by this stereotypical background.

One of the statements is found almost everywhere and is also used as the exhibition’s title: “No to crucifixions”. As well as writing it on canvasses or clothes, Audeoud hangs it on chains, as a pendant, in the same way crucifixes are often worn. Similarly to Andres Serrano’s Piss Christ, Audeoud reminds us with her necklaces that crucifixes represent, in fact, an act of torture. It is also a way to step away from this violence symbolised by the crucifix, without necessarily rejecting religious faith and beliefs.

References to Christianity and religion in general are important elements of the exhibition: they appear through symbols on paintings, through the soundtrack saying “amen” repetitively, through the religious vocabulary on the perfume bottles. The idea of the icon is also explored here, with the ‘fashion icon’ represented by the stylised mannequins, clothes, accessories and perfume. However, as strong as these references are, there is a clear intention to break from the rules and the violence sometimes related to religion.

Going back to this idea of the fashion icon, in ‘No to crucifixions’, femininity and fashion are also significant elements; fashion being more of a tool to transmit a message and draw a portrait, when the femininity reflected in the show feels like an affirmation of Audeoud as an emancipated person. No to crucifixions, but yes to Fabienne.

The work indeed feels very personal and attached to Audeoud’s own story, emancipation, background and struggles. It almost leaves a doubt about whether the teeth on the see-through canvasses are hers. Are they?

Celebration and fun are also present within a context which can appear so serious. Bright colours, first, but also a smiling face, a dancing figure and an encouraging “wonderful you” are  painted on the canvasses on the side walls.

On the wall at the end of the gallery, a shelf is covered with cheap bottles of perfume. Their arrangement tells a story about gender roles, males, females, sexuality or even puritanism. It is interesting how this piece, ‘Perfume for the poor’(2017) resonates with a particular background: these aligned items are very common in the small shops in corridors of the Parisian metro. The idea of the mimicked luxury, the pretended extravagance visible with the perfume bottles also resonates with the entire exhibition and the fact that being part of a very conservative group (whether religious or not) is often about pretending.

‘No to crucifixions’ is a big show, and there is a lot to look at, but the story told is consistent. Fabienne Audeoud in collaboration with KARST, managed to offer us an exhibition serious and light at the same time, with the right proportions of celebration and reflection. Games are played with perfume bottles and funny (as well as a bit creepy) looking faces, but the show also pushes us towards reflecting about religion, individuality and humanity; bringing us back into the reality and sometimes violence of the world we live in and showing us that emancipation and self-realisation are possible (although difficult) even in a “less than good society”.

20170222_154343

 


KARST is open every week from Wednesday to Saturday from 11am to 5pm
‘No to Crucifixion’ will be open until the 11th of March 2011.

 

Advertisements

Quick review: Claire Hooper at PCA

Long time no see, I know and unfortunately I have no real excuse for it.
However I’ll be back here more regularly now (well let’s cross fingers).
And I will start with a quick review of the latest show at PCA’s gallery. I am thinking about starting a regular ‘quick review’ post-series , with reviews of exhibitions that are more casual and less polished than the ones that I can spend 14hours working on.
So here we go.


Claire Hooper, at Plymouth College of Art’s gallery
9.11.2016 to 13.12.2016

20161112_125206.jpg

Last week Plymouth College of Art’s gallery opened a new show by the artist Claire Hooper, as the first show of their moving image season. Claire’s practice works with installation, moving image and print towards the creation of a narrative around ancient mythology.

Before entering the show for opening, I didn’t research what I was about to see, and I have to admit that my first impression was surprise. Unlike most of the previous shows in the Gallery this one has really transformed the space. The gallery wasn’t the “white cube” I knew anymore. There were installations before in this space, but to my memory this show is the first that changes the space into something drastically different. The use of low lightning, large sheets of patchwork-like fabric, round shapes and soft pastel carpet create a strong sense of intimacy and femininity in a space that use to feel cold, straight and wide-open.
Clearly defined areas have been set and the gallery is now an en-suite dressing room and thepresence of a wig, clothes and what seems to be jewellery (note:it’s apparently yoni eggs- used to muscle the pelvic floor after giving birth) reinforces that impression. Only the mirror is missing but the video projected on the wall seem to replace it.

I think that the covered window plays a very important role in building that feeling of intimacy. The gallery often feels like a very open space with a large window through which everyone can see what happens in or out. If you’re visiting a show everyone can see you and you can see everyone; but not this time. This is particularly effective during the day when the sun is out. As the room is quiet and the curtains seem closed, with the sun projecting the soft colors of the fabric covering the window, the room seems to invite you for a rest. From the outside, I believe that night time gives its full potential to the display as it feels like something might be happening inside but it’s hidden behind the closed “curtain”. For once, you can’t peek through the window. To fulfill his curiosity, the wanderer has to come in.

The idea  of a feminine space is also very strong and as well as the space’s configuration, the presence of artifacts (pottery bowls, bra,…) which refer to nurturing and motherhood play a strengthening role towards that sense; pottery bowls distributed in the room also echo ancient female’s crafts with a twist of mysticism.

And then there’s the video piece projected onto a whole wall of the room. The video is a combination of two recorded performance pieces involving both Claire Hooper herself and the performer Asifa Lahore. Both of the pieces are interesting, but as a whole it feels like something is missing; and this feeling then extends to the whole installation.

At first, I thought that sound might be missing element I was looking for, however when I visited the show out of the opening night settings, its absence wasn’t disturbing anymore; in such an intimate space, silence and discretion seem to be required in order to keep the ‘coziness’ of the room.

But then, if it’s not the sound, what is it? The frustration remains and as clear the different elements evoked by the piece (femininity, motherhood, vanity, narrated legend of Sumerian goddess of love Inanna, questioned gender) are, it’s difficult to link them all. A visual link can be easily made between the videos and the space but connecting the narrative and meanings of the videos and the installed dressing room is more complicated.
Vanity could be a common point between hair, Inanna and the dressing room, but it doesn’t fit with motherhood as presented here. Does becoming a mother means giving up on vanity? Does motherhood replace vanity? It’s unclear.

My intuition tells me that the missing piece will be found in the performance happening on Thursday, because even if strong senses of femininity and intimacy are created in the space, there’s an even stronger feeling of emptiness within that space. This space feels like an empty stage, a scenery set for a certain event, and that hasn’t happened yet. Even filled with wine-drinking art-enthusiasts, if no one is using this space in the way it was created for, it just feels wrong.

Overall, I can’t say that the show is ‘definitely’ missing something since at this stage it seems like a big part of it will be unveiled during the performance; but I believe that if the space remains in the same state as it is now after the event, it might be a miss. I think the piece has to be considered as a whole, and the ‘whole’ includes the performance, as this room seems to be the setting of an action.

But I guess I’ll never see the completed piece since I won’t be able to make it for the performance as I will be away on that day (to see more performance, the irony). Hopefully this will leave traces that I will be able to witness when I return. I hope the performance will unlock the puzzle and give to the piece what it’s missing.
Can anyone go and let me know?
I will probably update that review later, anyway.

Exhibition Review : The Earth is our radio (KARST)

The Earth is our radio is the new exhibition happening in KARST. It’s a group exhibition open from the 19th of February until the 19th of March 2016.

1456216821_1937227_1248239195190923_3095483344247131743_n

Official poster of the show.

The first time I’ve heard about this exhibition was through the words of my friend Vesislava who is currently on an internship at KARST, and she described it as a show with “only street artists”. So to be fair, I was expecting mostly graffiti as it is probably the first stereotype that comes one’s mind when thinking about “street art”. So what was my surprise when I discovered what the show was really about. Indeed, it’s about street art, but a whole different type of street art where the link to urban culture doesn’t only happen through graffiti and where a celebration of the cityscape occurs in a rather delicate way.

When you enter the gallery through that small door on the right, you’re directly thrown into an ambiance reminding of some dystopian movies in decayed cities. The piece you’re first exposed to is Rob Chavasse’s Recreation: a video piece combining vertiginous images, symphony and scream-like noise of the mechanism of an electronic car toy. The video is 2’20” and raises the rhythm of your heart. Or maybe it was just mine, helped by the violence evoked by the symphony and the rhythm of the video slowly accelerating until the final crash of the car left alone in what seems to be a very big and empty city.

Then after an emotionally dense moment in the lobby, you can pass the small opening to enter a big white space, taking yourself out of the dark to go in another type of darkness with signs of burned flags (Punch the Sky, Marcin Dudek) depicting the possible – but colorful- decay of a state; cages (Wild, Marcin Dudek) that visitors don’t even seem to notice as if that type of fences was common. The feeling of a decayed urban space is definitely something that screams out from this show.

IMG_0155

KARST, the Earth is our Radio (Marcin Dudek)

One piece that really stood up for me was Boarded 2 by Eb Itso. In a corner of the gallery, near the cage-like installation by Marcin Dudek are some wood panels on the wall. At first, you don’t really think about it, it has an organic feel reminding you some of Richard Long’s early works. Maybe it’s about wood? But then you get to see the photograph (or to the description on the leaflet – if you are impatient like me) and that’s enough for you to say “oh… okay” and reconsider the whole thing. How effective is that? I would say really effective. It changes the whole feeling you could have had for this piece, it changes its meaning and creates a story. You’re suddenly drawn to learn what happened and who those people who had to shut their house were; building an impression of sadness, of closure, of human displacement; bringing back memories like New Orleans after Katrina, like the images you get to see in National Geographic of big US cities which suffered from the economic crisis like Detroit.

I think it makes you re-consider the urban space; it makes you think about the occupation of these spaces and about being human in the city and or the world, basically.

Using color codes and rough shapes, the other pieces evoke the urban space, the asphalt, the cement, the feeling that everything can look grey in the city especially when it’s emptied from people. However streets, even if they are grey and left empty can become a playground for groups like skaters or street artists; and Mike Ballard reminds us of that quite efficiently through simple shapes and chipped paint on worn wood blocks evoking the ramps of a skate park. And what is more successful than skateboarding and street culture to celebrate the cityscape? Nothing is probably better to say that of course there’s fear and sadness in a decayed city but there’s also games, fun and joy.

IMG_0167

Close-up on one of Frédéric Plateus’s PVC sculptures

Talking about fun and joy, Fréderic Plateus gives his contribution to the celebration of the urban space by bringing in bright colors with his PVC wall-mounted sculptures. They succeed indeed in evoking graffiti: the big fat colorful round letters brightening a sad and grey wall. He hits a spot as well in reminding us of American Diners from another time in which you often see skaters; using the same material used for the shiny and bouncy plastic seats. It feels like you could almost hear the squeaky noise of sneakers against the PVC.

Overall this exhibition was probably the easiest for me to review so far as it really did shake me with an impressive ease. Some pieces will surely be stuck in my head or even in my heart forever (Boarded 2, by Eb Itso if I only have to mention one) but even if to me some pieces were stronger than other, the general feeling is that everything fits perfectly together. The pieces and artists have been selected with an obvious consistency and KARST definitely hit a spot with that one. The depiction of a decayed, abandoned but celebrated cityscape is screams to your eyes using all the codes possible; and it’s even more accurate when you know a bit about the history the gallery itself (which used to be a garage in a decayed area of Plymouth). This show feels like it belongs there, like it was meant to be shown there and in that way; it’s a beautiful baby that KARST is exhibiting to start 2016, and I can only conclude by promoting it. Really guys, it’s definitely a must-see.
Don’t miss it.

Work in Progress – Is she alright ?

So fair I haven’t talked much about who I am or what I am doing in life. I have been posting a bit of my review (really long/late/not interesting ones) but nothing about my own practice.

So for the ones who read me and who don’t know yet, I’m a student in Fine Art.
My practice is focused on issues regarding the body, females and the society and I work mostly with performance.

The project I am going to talk about is the project I am currently working on. It’s called “Is she alright?” and it focuses on the vulnerability of women (or people in general) in the public space, especially when they’re drunk.

This project started with an assignment given by my tutors : I had to “make something” somehow related to Plymouth. So I started thinking about the first things I noticed about this city, when I first arrived.

And when I first arrived, I noticed drunk students. In France, people get drunk as well but I had never seen such a club/bars culture and so much students dressed a bit the same way, women wearing really short dresses with really high heels, men fighting and everything… To me that was all new, when I arrived here. So I started discussing with my tutors and then and idea to somehow produce a work about that, and maybe focus on the high-heels things came up (I already made a project about high heels so that was the most instinctive thing I could think about).
So I started with documentation. I originally planned to go and take picture/records of drunk ladies walking in high heels, watching them being uncomfortable. And I ended up with a completely different outcome. I was just able to take pictures of drunk people, most of them who passed out, being on the floor in quite unusual position. But what I’ve noticed is that, while those people were very VERY vulnerable, and could possibly be in a potential danger, most of the people around didn’t care or didn’t even notice.
So that’s where everything started.
That’s when I decided to imitate those positions, without all the things that say ‘alcohol’ during day time, in the week. How would people react about that ? How would they react if they saw someone, on the floor, looking like they passed out on a sunny Monday ?
Would they try to check on this person ?
Would they think “ah, well, she’s drunk, she will be fine” ?
Would they just look at them in a funny way and then just go ?
Why the reaction is different when the person who is on the floor is dressed differently ? Why would the time in the day or the night matter ? Why people don’t react when the person appears drunk ? Do they just think “oh well, if they passed out that’s their fault and they’ll be alright” ? What if by not stopping by this person who lays on the floor on Saturday night something bad happens to them ?

That’s all the things I try to make people aware of. That’s the question I’m trying to ask and maybe answer.
I don’t really know if it would make any change, and where this will actually go/end, but I’m curious to see what will come out of it.

IMG_1691

Tim Etchells, For now… at the Plymouth Arts Center (review)

On last Wednesday I was with my friend Vesislava, and on a pike of motivation, we’ve decided to visit the exhibition For Now… at the Plymouth Arts Center, running from the 25th of September 2015 until the 2nd of January 2016.

abb03

Tim Etchells, Future will be confusing

The show is a solo show, actually the first in Plymouth by the London-based British artist Tim Etchells, whose practice evolves around performance and the exploration of language. This show is also the first show in Plymouth Arts Center which has been curated by its new artistic director Ben Brothwick, formerly artistic director at the Cardiff Artes Mundi (from 2010 to 2012) and assistant curator at the Tate Modern London (from 2003 to 2010).

Four pieces of work are displayed in this show, one of them being exhibited for the first time. This may seem to be just a few, but it’s actually enough for the uneasy and complicated space of the Arts Center (which, according to Brothwick in an interview by the Plymouth Herald is a restricting and restricted space).

Starting by the beginning, Revolution (2010) might be the first piece of art the visitor encounters, as it is on the building’s façade (however if you come from the Barbican area, you may not even see it). This artwork is composed of eight neon signs of four alternating colors suggesting different voice tones, with the message “Start a revolution”.

startarevolutionlighter

This sentence, which can be considered appealing for some people (including myself) has been described as ‘controversial’ (Kate Foster in Made in Plymouth), but in the context of Plymouth the controversy can be questioned. Indeed, in Britain, in Plymouth, a city full of students it is as controversial as it could be somewhere else in the World? Students (which are a big part of the Plymouth audience) are often encouraged to go and try new things and maybe change the World. Also, this sentence could be seen a tease as it makes the viewer question the reason behind it: What is it? Why is it there? Is it art or something else? An advert maybe? The fact that it was put outside tells a lot about curation choices as well and actually gives the audience an insight into Brothwick’s plans of “going off-site” (Brothwick, 2015).

The show then continues in the upstairs gallery with Mirror Pieces (2014) made of six pairs of neon-written sentences hung around the whole gallery. Originally, this piece was presented in a grid, but it has been “broken up” (Brothwick, 2015) in order to be displayed around the whole room. Actually, having the pairs disseminated through the whole gallery space works really well. It allows reflections on the Plexiglas guard in the middle of the space and makes the viewer question the space and whether or not the work is reflected or composed of different parts. After a few minutes though, when starting to read the phrases the viewer gets to understand the illusion and that not only it’s not the same piece reflected, nor it’s the same piece copied six time but it’s actually six different pairs with three different phrases: “optical illusions”, “political delusions” and “poetical confusions”. As said in the leaflet of the exhibition they “seem to anagram each other” perhaps due to the repetitive colors, or the fact that the three phrases start and end with the same pairs of letters, which easily helps the work to play with our lazy brains.

mirror-pieces-tim-etchells-neon-2014-image-courtesy-of-the-artist-72dpi-002

Presented in that configuration, this artwork is really successful and strong. Getting the context of it isn’t probably the easiest but it doesn’t change the impact, challenging the viewer’s notion of the gallery space, almost making the viewer dizzy.

Paired with Mirror Pieces in the upstairs gallery are twelve acrylic paintings on paper with the quote “They taught their children that the poor were ghosts and did not exist”. This piece called Ghosts (2015) is a more discreet piece and if the viewer is too captivated by the neon work they might not even notice the two first drawings on the left when they enter the space as they are composed of really small splashes of paint on white paper directly pinned on the wall. The other paintings include writing with varied calligraphies. The whole piece appears quiet and almost silent when confronted to the brightness and strong illusion game of Mirror Pieces, which can raise questions about the choice of displaying those two pieces in the same room. Are those pieces connected? How? Perhaps the idea is that by being “covered” by the neon work and almost getting unnoticed, Ghosts actually becomes a ghost. Also, the message sounds poetical while being quite political, so a link could be made through the writings: “poetical confusion” “political illusions”. Likewise, putting Ghosts in this space helps the viewer to realize the illusion created by Mirror Pieces.

Regarding the loudness of the other pieces exhibited, this piece might the weaker of the show. However, the choice of pairing it with Mirror Pieces gives strengthens it a little bit. Yet, in another context or maybe on its own the effect wouldn’t probably be the same.

The last (but not least) artwork presented at the Plymouth Art Center is a brand new piece displayed on its own in the Window Gallery: Stand Off (2015). This piece, a four channel audio installation is a bit different from the other pieces not only because it never has been shown before but also because unlike the 3 other pieces of work exhibited, it’s spoken text, not written text.

When the viewer enters the room, they face the installation, four speakers mounted at the height of an average man’s ear in a circle on the middle of the room. From the speakers, voices are heard telling the audience to “stand off”, “walk away” and “back off”. At that point, the viewed gets two choices : entering the circle and be part of the installation or staying out of it and keeping a position of spectator. Whether the viewer choses to enter or not, the piece stays effective and quite oppressive especially due to the loudness of the sound.

[Regarding my personal experience, when I visited the show, the sound wasn’t apparently as loud as it should have been, as my friend (who already visited it) told me, but still the effect of mimicking “crowd control techniques” could be felt. However, one can ask whose decision was it to take the volume down? Was it the artist, the curator’s or the gallery’s staff’s? Does it mean the piece is still working? How does it affect the work and who can take those decisions? Regarding curating methods and choices, it raises a few questions.]

Back to the work itself, if the viewer starts linking it to other artworks like Revolution which gives inspiration for rebellion, when walking into the installation telling the audience to go away in a quite oppressive manner, a spirit of contradiction might show up and the viewer is tempted to stay, starting its own revolution by not letting those voices win. Telling silently to the voices: “I still do what I want because you’re just a voice in a speaker.”

Like Mirror Piece, this piece is one of the strongest but in a different way. Mirror piece is more about creating illusion and confusion while Stand Off is about the actual loudness of the piece making the viewer either go away or stay and fight against the mechanisms the piece evokes. Also,as it is so loud, the sound can be heard from the entrance of the Arts Center and viewer’s curiosity is tickled a bit. Where does that come from? Is it someone actually talking?

Overall Tim Etchells’s collaboration with the Arts Center and Ben Borthwick worked well in creating a strong show, making combinations between pieces that works very well together. The strength and delicacy of the work particularly stands out when a bit time of extra time is taken to visit the gallery.

Yet, for an audience who has notions or interests about curating methods, this show is quite challenging, especially looking at decision taking. Indeed, who takes the decision to “break down” a piece of work, which has originally been presented in a grid (Mirror Pieces)? Who decides on how to put speakers for an audio installation (Stand Off)? Who is in the right position to take those decisions?

Nevertheless in terms of artwork itself, Tim Etchells’s word focused pieces are powerful and even though some of us may not look beyond the visual and emotional impressions, the political involvement is still easy to see.

Sources :

Exhibition Review : ARTIST ROOM Gerhard Richter, Plymouth City Museum

ARTIST ROOM: Gerhard Richter is an exhibition taking place at Plymouth City Museum between the 26th of September 2015 to the 16th of January 2016. This exhibition is part of a project called ‘Artist Rooms’ created by the Tate Gallery and the National Scottish Gallery ; a project aiming to “create a new national resource of contemporary art that will be shared ith museums and galleries through UK so as to inspire new audiences, especially to young people” (Tate, 2008). This particular exhibition focuses on the work of Artist Gerhard Richter, known to be one of the ‘most significant living artists’ (Plymouth City Council, 2015) and presents a selection of 13 works, curated with the help of students from the Fine Art course at the Plymouth college of Art.

On the articles published by Tate and by Plymouth City Council, the exhibition is described as ‘examin[ing] the breadth and depth of the practice of Gerhard Richter’ (Plymouth City Council, 2015) with a meaning that the selection of 13 explores quite widely Richter’s work. Indeed time wise, the exhibitions shows works from 1971 to 2005 viewers can therefore get an insight to different points of Richter’s career. The pieces are also quite varied in style with some traditional oil paintings as “Brigid Polk” (1975) and some abstract paintings and other pieces using different mediums.

Gerhart Richter ‘Abstract Painting (809-3)’ 1994

However as shown in the different articles describing the exhibition, the focus is made on the piece “48 Portraits” (1998) and this focus is confirmed by the exhibition’s arrangement. Indeed, when you enter the room at Plymouth City Gallery and Museum, “48 portraits”(1998) is the first thing you see, not only because there generally are many people around it, but also because it takes an entire wall of the gallery. In addition, some benches have been set in front of it, not clearly facing it as those benches have been made to look both ways, but the presence of leaflet focused only on this piece confirms that the focus is there. Regarding to the aims of the Artist Rooms project, focusing on such a piece is quite relevant as this piece is probably the most accessible to all audiences. It’s also probably the most ludic and easy to look at. When you look at the piece, you wonder who those people are and why they are here, which is something with what you can catch young people’s attention. The focus is made even more obvious when on the leaflet with extended labels you can barely find any information about the people on the other pieces like “Brigid Polk” (1971), “Gilbert” (1975) and “George” (1975).

Gerhard Richter, ‘Brigid Polk (305)’ 1971

Another curious point about this exhibition is that the concept of Artist Rooms is to have “individual rooms devoted to particular artists” (Tate, 2008) which is not completely the case in ARTIST ROOMS: Gerhard Richter as the room is divided in two sub-rooms. The first sub-room the visitor enters is the bigger one and exhibits the main piece and the second sub-room that some visitors may not even reach is the smallest one, containing five abstract pieces.
However the main difference between those two rooms lies more in the curation than in the size. In the first room, everything seems to be arranged around “48 portraits”(1998) but with no clear order. Some of the pieces seem to have been paired regarding the technique (“Ophelia” (1996) with “Guildenstern” (1998) or “Brigid Polk” (1971) with “Gilbert” (1975) and “George” (1975))but it appears to be the only organization that you can find as they are not settled regarding the timeline or even regarding the colors (for example Abstract Painting (1994) with bright yellows has been set near George (1975) with greys and dark colors).
On the other side of the panel dividing the room however, the pieces seem to fit together naturally as they all have something in common: the color grey. Indeed, “Abstraktes Bild, Haut” (2004), “Spiegel, Grau” (1991), “Abstraktes Bild, Grau” (2002), “Asbtraktes Bild, Silikat” (2002) and “Self-portrait, Three times, Standing” (1991) have all been painted using almost the same tomes of grey which gives to this second room a sensation of clear and natural order that you can’t find in the other room.

Around the exhibition itself, a soundtrack has been created mainly by students as an answer to the painting exhibited and can be found on the only leaflet that the visitors are allowed to take home. This idea as original as it can be can also be questioned: why? Why does this exhibition has a soundtrack and why this one? Some events around the exhibition have been also created to promote this soundtrack or other type of answers to the exhibition (through dance for example) but no explanation has been given anywhere. Perhaps Richter likes music and dance, perhaps the idea is to open this exhibition to other type of arts which are not usually crossed, perhaps it is to give new opportunities to get involved to students from the surrounding schools and universities or perhaps it’s to try to catch young people’s attention through more accessible forms of art? Looking again at ARTIST ROOMS’s aims, the last option might be the more consistent as there are also four events on the fifteen organized around the exhibition that are specifically targeting young people : “Young person’s Art workshop” and the three half-term events “Selfie Saturday”, “Painting, Richter’s style” and “Richter v Reynolds”.
However, even if this exhibition seems to be mostly targeting a young or student audience, it’s still open to everyone else, and having big names like Richter in a local galleries opens the world of contemporary painting to a public who wouldn’t necessarily have access to big national galleries where this kind of pieces are usually exhibited.
To conclude, it can be said that this exhibition has more positive than negative points. Even if the curation method of the first sub-room isn’t clear to the viewer as well as the creation of a soundtrack, the selection of works and the way it was displayed generally fits the aims of the project behind the exhibition.

Sources :
• Packer, S. (2015) Fine Art students help curate exhibition as part of Tate’s ARTIST ROOMS [Online] Available from: http://www.plymouthart.ac.uk/latest/blog/fine-art-students-help-curate-exhibition-as-part-of-tate-rooms
• Plymouth City Council (2015) Artist Room Gerhard Richer [Online] Available from: http://www.plymouth.gov.uk/museumrichter
• Tate (2015) Gerhard Richter at Plymouth City Gallery [Online] Available from : http://www.tate.org.uk/whats-on/other-venues/display/gerhard-richter-plymouth-city-museum-art-gallery 
• Tate (2008) About Artist Rooms [online] Available from : http://www.tate.org.uk/artist-rooms/about
• Tope, H. (2015) Artist Rooms: Gerhard Richter, Made in Plymouth [Online] Available from : http://madeinplymouth.co.uk/project/artist-rooms-gerhard-richter-by-helen-tope/