Thursday 22 January 2015

Richard Tuttle - I Don't Know. The Weave of Textile Language - Tate Modern

Richard Tuttle - Turbine Hall, Tate Modern, London

Currently exhibiting in the Turbine Hall at Tate Modern, London, Richard Tuttle is an Amercan artist for whom art is an adventure.  He is also a collector of textiles from around the world and is fascinated by weaving. He is interested in the different techniques and technologies that different cultures use to create their textiles.
Richard Tuttle - Detail of central section

This hanging structure is the largest sculpture Tuttle has ever made.  It uses about 2,500 sq metres of fabric hanging from a plywood frame 24 metres long and 12 metres high.  It looks like two wings separated by a large red covered structure.

Richard Tuttle

It is supposed to relate to Tuttle's memories of the Vietnam war (he had wanted to be a pilot until he realised his role would be to drop bombs) and to raise the issue of genocide in the 20th Century and to comment on the separation of the mechanical (e.g. large scale industrial textile production) and the human (e.g. "art-making").
Richard Tuttle

The three fabrics were woven by Garden Silks Mills Ltd in Surat, India.  They are a combination of natural and man-made fibres, dyed to the bright colours & textures specified by Tuttle.  I could see the red and orange/yellow fabric quite clearly.  I read there was some midnight blue too but I couldn't see it.

Richard Tuttle - Holes in the red fabric

When close up you can see that the red fabric has a pattern of small holes at regular intervals.

On until 6 April 2015, you can read more here.  I think, unusually, it's better in the photos than in real life.  Not quite as exciting as some of the other Turbine Hall exhibits but if you are in the vicinity, then take a look!

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