TimeScale / installation by IAN JOHNSON

18 Mar 2010 – 8 May 2010

Event times

Thurs - Sun 12 - 6pm

Gooden Gallery

London, United Kingdom


Travel Information

  • Bethnal Green Tube

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'TimeScale' continues Ian Johnson's enquiry into the conceptual and physical implications of man's impact on the urban and natural landscape and ways that this can be configured intuitively. It consists of inter-related sculptures, drawings and assemblages that interlace attributes of the elemental with various concepts of organisation and categorisation common to man's need to understand his own history and development.

Cultural anthropologists study cultural diversity, collecting data on the impact of global economic and political processes on local cultural realities. The empirical purity of knowledge gained when the standard model for comparison and measurement can only come from within our own cultural reality reveals the complexity and questionable objectivity of any conclusions drawn. Johnson works not from the assumption that sense can be made from his enquiry but rather that sense can be 'felt'.

Methods of presenting artefacts in museums; the classification and ordering of exhibits in an attempt to explain a culture or plot a history is referenced in the drawing 'Timescale (light box #1)' which provokes contemplation and quiet objectivity. The tabletop sculpture with carefully positioned, painted black seeds entitled 'Badlands' (In the gallery window) assumes a long-lost logic. It is an aberration of modern taxonomy; a perverse panorama of some ulterior game-plan. Placed around the walls, the three small sculptures ' 'Untitled #1 (Ash)' / 'Untitled #2 (Steel)' and 'Untitled #3 (Oil)' could be interpreted as offerings, altar-like objects which have an imperative of origin and meaning beyond immediate grasp, but which provide acute points of concentration formally and conceptually around the room.

In contrast to these objects, which celebrate unavailability, detachment and mystery, the large branch-like forms that dominate the gallery provide a tangible subjective experience. The semi-chaotic over-lay of forms, stacked, strewn and positioned on the floor or partially climbing the walls, creates a sense of location, an apocalyptic landscape. Titled 'Crosswire (antenna)' they are a caricature of nature, over-simplistic and clearly man-made; their function a visual confessional.

PHYSICOLOGY - moving image
June 4th - July 17th 2010

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