Saturday, 18 July 2015

Alice Anderson at the Wellcome Collection review – a weird, wired world

Wellcome Collection, London From old TVs to obsolete telephones and even a staircase, Alice Anderson mummifies things in copper wire. It may sound banal – but it’s an art that gets some very curious and uncanny results Bellows by Alice Anderson Mystical and strange ... Bellows by Alice Anderson. Photograph: Wellcome Collection Jonathan Jones Friday 17 July 2015 15.09 BST Last modified on Saturday 18 July 2015 00.01 BST Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share via Email Share on Pinterest Share on LinkedIn Share on Google+ Shares 37 Their funeral wrappings glisten fierily in the spotlights that pick them out in a theatrically darkened space. All our yesterdays are here, the things we use and throw away, lost and found in spidery cocoons. Alice Anderson wraps things in copper wire. It is a banal description of an art that gets some very curious and uncanny results. Telephone, 2013, by Alice Anderson Facebook Twitter Pinterest Telephone, 2013, by Alice Anderson. Photograph: Wellcome Collection This might be in a museum a thousand years in the future, dedicated to the strange artefacts of the 21st century. Why, archaeologists will ask, did the people of that time choose to mummify their old TV screens, obsolete telephones and loudspeakers? Was it a bizarre religious attempt to apologise for the culture of waste that was at that moment eating up the planet? An electric guitar has been swathed over and over again, the thin thread, wrapped tighter and tighter, entirely containing the instrument so you can see its shape but, up close, cannot make out its strings or fretboard. In caring for it, Anderson has muffled it. This guitar will never wail another solo. Nor will the pipe she has swaddled in copper wire ever again be smoked. This is not a pipe – it is a mummy. It is a ghost. Anderson is hardly the first artist to have wrapped up everyday objects. Wrapping is in fact a great modern tradition. Anderson’s guitar recalls the shamanistic German sculptor Joseph Beuys who wrapped a grand piano in grey -READ MORE - by Alice Anderson

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