Surveyed from all sides

Last week (at the last minute, as per usual) I saw Rachel Whiteread’s exhibition at Tate Britain. She was the first woman to win the Turner Prize in 1993 and is one of the UK’s leading Sculptors, casting objects and architectural spaces using cement, plaster, resin and other materials.

At the centre of this exhibition, housed in an eminently appropriate minimalist space, was one of her most well-known monumental pieces: Untitled (Staircase) 2001.

It was a joy to visit an exhibition where photography was allowed, and I spent some time watching the public’s reaction to this principal sculpture. I came away with a number of images of which this is my current favourite. People gathered in ones and twos, and stood still… contemplating. It was a matter of patience, waiting for the compositions to form and hoping that an unwanted interloper wouldn’t ruin the picture as the shutter was pressed.




About LensScaper

Hi - I'm a UK-based photographer who started out 45+ years ago as a lover of landscapes, inspired by my love of outdoor pursuits: skiing, walking and climbing. Now retired, I seldom leave home without a camera and I find images in unexpected places and from different genres. I work on the premise that Photography is Art and that creativity is dependent on the cultivation of 'A Seeing Eye'. I'm not averse to manipulating images to produce derivatives that may sometimes be far removed from the original.
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13 Responses to Surveyed from all sides

  1. Sue says:

    Nice bit of symmetry there…

  2. Interesting shot. For some reason it reminds me of the opening scenes of the film 2001 with the mystified apes gathered around a strange object…

    • LensScaper says:

      Welcome to my blog and many thanks for your comment. I remember that scene, and I can see the connection. I think the presence of a roof light directly overhead adds to that idea, and it was the centre piece in a very large space.

  3. alan frost says:

    Maybe it’s just me but I prefer your image to the piece of art. Perhaps it needs to be seen in the flesh to really appreciate it. Waiting paid dividends.

    • LensScaper says:

      Many thanks Alan. I think a sculpture like this needs to be seen to be really appreciated – one gains a better understanding by walking round it. Having said that, a lot of modern sculpture does leave me cold; but I enjoyed this one.

  4. Excellent composition, Andy. Like the point of view and square format.

    • LensScaper says:

      Thanks Linda. One of the things I like about my Lumix is that I have a choice of four ratios for an image. It can be an added complication at times, but it also is a creative tool that I enjoy experimenting with. The square format is one that I particularly like.

  5. bluebrightly says:

    There are many joys here for me – it’s a joy to see a successful woman sculptor making great work. It’s a joy to be able to photograph art, as you mentioned, and it’s a joy to see your interpretation here. Actually, i hope you post a few more.

    • LensScaper says:

      Thanks very much Lynn. It’s always beneficial to see someone else’s art, and a pleasure when you are actually allowed to photograph it. So often galleries don’t allow that. I posted another image on Instagram (shot on the iPhone) that I think you have seen, and I may post another one here in the next few days.

  6. Heide says:

    Marvelous image, Andy! The people you chose to include in this frame are as arresting (and in a couple of cases perplexing) as the work itself. 🙂

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