Draft review on Sue’s work

Uncategorized

Artist: Sue Wightman
Piece: To be wood or not to be wood
Mixed media including found driftwood, household paint, wire, electric bulbs, etc.
Music by Krzysztof Penderecki
19th May 2012, Warwickshire College, School of Arts

With the intriguing and witty title To be wood or not to be wood Sue Wightman’s installation in a perfectly white cuboid of the exhibition space produces the effect of being …. Found natural objects – driftwood – and electric light bulbs suspended in the air invite the audience to wonder around the maze accompanied by disturbing music by Penderecki. Driftwood pieces are covered with three shades of blue paint, and the naked electric bulbs are lit. The movement of the observer/visitor agitates the driftwood to move in a way that seems to suggest affinity with Penderecki’s Threnody as well as introducing a vision of the unquietitude of the sea. Links to the sea is threefold: the materials used (driftwood), the colours and the movement of the pieces in the response to the audience. Light of the naked electric bulbs highlights the artistic interference with the natural shapes and colours and repositions the sea storm into a white exhibition place, about 80 miles away from the nearest beach.

The natural found objects are developed through manipulation of their position in relation to the audience and the application of colour. The artist’s intervention with the objects doesn’t so much change their nature as highlights their essential character and displays certain elements of their … that were hidden or unnoticed before. The artist references works by such installation artists as Cornelia Parker and Esther Stocker while filling her own work with her own playful treatment of colour and ability to unify and juxtapose visual and auditory elements in one elegant piece with a slight feeling of danger and excitement of an unrestful sea.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s