Patrick Caulfield and Gary Hume – Tate Britain, August 2013

Patrick Caulfield (Tate Britain exhibition booklet)

This was a little while ago now… and I remember being quite excited about the Patrick Caulfield exhibition. I knew nothing about Gary Hume but buying a ticket for one of the exhibitions gave you free access to the second one.

We went on a Sunday afternoon. Neither exhibitions were particularly busy.

We started with Gary Hume… and I remember feeling completely out of my depth. Art no longer makes sense I remember thinking. Wandering aimlessly from room to room, trying to make sense – any sense- of what I was seeing. I was looking at largely big bright and shiny works.

The Other Half approached me. “I don’t understand”, he said (this reassured me plenty. He knows about art. It wasn’t me). “We should have read about Hume before coming”.

Hmmm… that’s interesting. Should we have read about Hume? Should we have learnt a bit more about him? Shouldn’t art speak to us? Isn’t that better than coming into an exhibition with pre-conceived ideas?

That debate is still raging at home. That day, I’m ashamed to say that I found American Tan IX; Red Barn Door; Yellow Window and Back of a Snowman (white) pleasing. Ashamed… because that’s all I can say about the works. The Snowman was particularly striking. I really wanted to stroke it. It looked so tactile.

We moved on to Patrick Caulfield. And just like that… art made sense for me again.

I don’t mean to be mean. I need to read about Gary Hume I think.

Anyway, I really enjoyed the earlier Patrick Caulfield. Simple lines. Strong colours. Visually stunning. Quite realistic.

Works which come to mind now: Pottery; Window at Night; Dining Recess and Tandoori Restaurant.

All in all… it was a great outing. I don’t mind the whole Gary Hume frustration. Surely that’s what it’s all about. Pushing the boundaries. Learning about new artists. And being comforted by artists you associate with.

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I'm an inquisitive being. Everything is an adventure: art, architecture, colours, food, patterns, people... and travel! And I love elephants. That's what I mostly write about.
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