With the British artistic duo Tim Noble and Sue Webster there is more than meets the eye. In their latest work, called “Nihilistic Optimistic,” scraps of wood and other discarded material appear to be configured in random shapes, or ‘street compositions.’ But with a single spotlight mounted at a precise angle, the abstract sculptures become transformed into figurative shadows on the wall. Look up and there is a man and woman sitting back-to-back in opposed chairs. A man in tattered clothing glances over his shoulder. A woman saunters across the wall.
The show builds upon the artists’ sustained investigation into self-portraiture, deconstructing the relationship between materiality and form. The artists are represented both together and alone, as a unit and as individuals.
From the press release: “The exhibition’s dualistic title responds to the oppositional forces present within these works, and indeed within the artists themselves; the show is at once constructive and destructive, hopeful and despairing. Light and shadow, form and absence, figuration and abstraction all inform one another and exist in a constant state of tension.”
‘Nihilistic Optimistic’ will be on display at Blaine Southern Gallery in London Hanover Square through November 24, 2012.