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Rosemary Trockel at the Serpentine

my own sketch from a Trockel sculpture – to avoid copyright infringement!

This is a post from the weareoca.com archive. Information contained within it may now be out of date.
Last year at around Christmas time our Curriculum Director Jane Horton asked all of us bloggers which show of those we had visited in 2012 was our favourite. I found the question impossible to answer and could only think of the Hans Peter Feldman which I had already blogged about. Visiting the Rosemary Trockel recently it felt at first as if on 15th February I might already have an answer when Jane asks again at the end of the year. The show is entitled Cosmos and it is a very enveloping experience to walk into the first room.
The show is a mix of Trockel’s own work, both new and historic, objects relating to her areas of interest, collaborative works and selected works of other artists which inform her practice and the whole thing has been done ‘in conversation’ with the curator. In this sense it seems to me that the exhibition is a rare (although increasingly less so) bringing together of different artistic and curatorial practices.
At first I was keen to read the tags and ‘spot’ which pieces were Trockel’s own work but once I had dropped down into a sensitivity to the register of the show I found myself able to experience the whole thing more completely and issues of authorship were present but not a primary curatorial framework. I enjoyed the holistic nature of the exhibit.
The collaborative work with Gunter Weseler involves amorphous fur fabric shapes that gently rise and fall as if breathing to great effect. The artists Trockel has chosen to include are extremely varied, almost wilfully so in that they tend to be outsider artists, auto didacts and applied artists like botanical illustrators. This is certainly not a group show.
The plurality and complexity of the show which is worlds within worlds is an extension of Trockel’s practice anyway as she works in such a variety of ways and as an artist I felt that this was a reasonable and honest experiment in reframing the interaction between audience and artist, revealing more and providing context.
Rosemary Trockel is showing at the Serpentine Gallery in London until 7th April. It is interesting to read the two reviews below – one of the London show and one of it’s New York incarnation which was very different and included different objects.

Posted by author: Emma Drye
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3 thoughts on “Rosemary Trockel at the Serpentine

  • I remember seeing one of Rosemary Trockel’s giant knitted jumpers once and was intrigued by its sculptural qualities and reference to craft. Some time later, I saw an exhibition of Oursider artists which also contained knitted garments. These garments were knitted from grasses and left to hang in the woods with no care whether they were found or not. It is interesting Trockel includes Outsider artists in her exhibition. It speaks to me of an honesty and openness.

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