White Garden Intervention (ASG)
28th August – 29th September 2018
Anna Schwartz Gallery
Kathy Temin’s White Garden Intervention (ASG), 2018 is both familiar and strange. The work focuses on absence through its very particular placement in the gallery. Interrupting the entry it renders the gallery beyond as a void, continuing Temin’s longstanding practice of exhibiting alternative representations of remembrance and loss in this space, including My Monument: Black Cube, 2009, Memorial Gardens, 2012 and Pet Cemetery, 2014.
Restricting the doorway, White Garden Intervention (ASG) is reflexive in nature inverting the negative architectural space of the gallery so that it becomes an object. This transitional home for the work alludes to the eventual positive occupation by the sculpture in another location, signalling a transition from this ephemeral occupation to the permanence of the monument.
Continuing Temin’s interest in the garden and the memorial, White Garden Intervention (ASG), 2018 reconfigures expectations of the monument. The work allows different experiences for remembrance, firstly through an object that is realised through a labour intensive and repetitive sewn process and secondly through an absence of anything inside the gallery.
Other artists have used walkways or entry into spaces to generate works, Daniel Buren placed a painting over the entry to his first commercial gallery exhibition in France in the 1960s, Marina Abromovitch and Ulay stood naked, one either side of the doorway, for their performative work Imponderabilia, 1977 and Untitled, 1969. Giovanni Anselmo blocked the doorway within a gallery with stones, a work that was repeated in different contexts.
The aim is for the gallery to be experienced anew, the function of the object is seen in a different way, to generate new relationships and experiences with both the work, its materiality and the space it occupies. The organic shapes of White Garden Intervention (ASG) are a metaphor for abstracted gardens and bodily forms. Fashioned in Temin’s signature synthetic fur, the garden is muted to stark white, revealing the textural and surface disparities between each section. This choice of medium subverts the monumental nature of the work and aligns the form with notions of domesticity and child-like playfulness. Conjuring the imagery of soft toys to elicit a sense of sentimentally and exaggerated human response, the materiality and generative ideas of White Garden Intervention (ASG) are brought together to evoke a response to private and collective sites of art history and memory.