Tag Archives: Rachel Whiteread

Dalby Forest 2: The Nissen Hut

Rachel Whiteread's Nissen Hut

Ever since seeing Cathy’s post about Rachel Whiteread’s, I was looking forward to seeing it. Cathy’s post sparked off a lively and forthright debate about what her readers thought of it and whether it is indeed ‘Art’, if you follow the link you can go to the comments and see what we all had to say about it.

I am a fan of Rachel Whiteread and her work, you can see other posts I’ve written about it, here, here , here and here.Nissen Hut by Rachel Whiteread

It’s not easy to sum up why I relate to her work, but I think it is about the way she gives the small, seemingly trivial aspects of human activity, construction and development a monumental quality. She uses real objects that show the marks of time and use and sets them in a monotone, permanent structure that gives us a chance to explore the details in a new way, and think about the hands that created the original structure and all that it connects to.broken windows

To me this is a war memorial that does not speak of the military, hierarchy or grand gestures, this commemorates Peter Nissen, the man who designed a pracitcal solution to a required need, during the First World War. Rachel WhitereadThe sculpture remembers the men who constructed it and lived in it and it connects us to those who constructed other Nissen huts over decades and all the different uses they have been put to. This one also commemorates the men who worked for the forestry and planted the forest it sits within. It commemorates time passing with the flaws and evidence of decay. It is the only permanent public piece in Britain of this, our most successful living female sculptor, it relates to all her other works throughout the world.mesh window

Making art is not only about making something that looks nice. Nissen SculptureIf it causes one to think about things in a different way it has done its job. broken windowsWithout knowing the story of this sculpture it would be difficult to appreciate what on earth it is doing in the forest.wooden planks, Rachel Whiteread

That is the same for most art – if we don’t want to discover more about it, we can just walk on by, but taking time to discover the story is, for me, an enriching, thought provoking and sometimes emotional experience.

corrugated, Rachel Whiteread

Here is a link to a short video about this sculpture

an article about the sculptor’s family connection,  her grandfather was a conscientious objector.

Not everyone will see it in the same way and all views are valid. Some of the locals were very much against it. I’d love to know what you think.

So that is the ‘deep and meaningful’ bit – now for a bit of silliness

In Cathy’s original post she wondered if the Nissen Hut would attract graffitti,  and Tialys’s comment prompted this quickly scrawled temporary bit of graffitti.

graffitti Nissen Hut

We was

graffitti -

and you can see a few more pics on this post of Cathy’s.

As we left it was getting dark and the sculpture took on a quiet ghostly glow through the trees

Rachel Whiteread

 

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Tate Couple

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A wonderful BBC programme, Imagine,  was on TV on Saturday, giving insights about Rachel Whiteread’s 30 year career and the current Exhibition at Tate Britain.

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I became fascinated by this couple

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Their shapes, their colours, their interaction.

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People watching is one of my favourite things to do – you too?

Joining in with Norm’s Thursday Doors.

Doors, Rachel Whiteread

Rachel Whiteread

 

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Silent Sunday at the Tate

Rachel Whiteread, Tate Britain

Rachel Whiteread at Tate Britain

fireplace, Rachel Whiteread

DSC_0349windows, Rachel Whiteread

Rounding off my weekend in London I went to Tate Britain to see the Rachel Whiteread exhibition. I have been interested in her work ever since ‘House’ in 1993.

Such an extraordinary thing to do.

Art that encourages us to see things differently is always exciting.

The atmosphere that was created by the exhibiton at the Tate was one of supreme calm and serenity. Something to do with the combination of neutral colours, scale and space. I would happily have spent the whole day there.

Rachel Whiteread

Making the domestic monumental.

I loved the way every shape interacted with the space and other objects in the space.

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Rachel Whiteread

Collections of used household objects cast as solid objects

looks simple doesn’t it but watch this film on ‘How to Cast like Rachel Whiteread’

and see just how many processes go into creating one object – mindblowing!

Rachel Whiteread

Book shelves reminding me of the first little library I used to visit with my Grandfather in the 1950s/60s

bookshelf, Rachel Whiteread

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There is something intriguing about exploring negative space.

Clever to keep the colours calm so that the mind can peacefully think about positive and negative without the noise of colour.

resin door

Rachel Whiteread door

And to get to know the artist better –  a film of Rachel Whitread talking about the way she works.

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Silent Sunday at Tate Britain

Tate Britain, Rachel Whiteread