What’s On in London this week: Saatchi Gallery’s latest group show welcomes the the cream of new German art – particularly into repetitive visual clichés in Julian Rosefeldt’s Soap Sample series, pictured – while the National Portrait Gallery plays host once again to the annual Taylor Wessing Portraiture Prize, and Alistrair Mackie’s pseudo-forest Copse fills the gallery void at All Visual Artists.
Gesamtkunstwerk: New Art from Germany Saatchi Gallery, London
The selection of 24 artists in the Saatchi Gallery’s latest group show will read like a who’s who of contemporary German art; establishing names firmly within the UK art periphery and bestowing on the individuals a sometimes midas, sometimes burdensome touch of Charles Saatchi’s approval. The name translates to essentially mean both “a total, ideal or universal work of art, or as a synthesis of different art forms into one all-embracing unique genre,” which is totally appropriate considering the irrefutable spectrum of work and talent chosen to represent “the now” of German art. On show until April 30, 2012.
Alistair Mackie: Copse All Visual Arts, London
In Alistair Mackie’s largest installation to date, an austere gallery interior is filled with a spectre like forest, “half carved between what it was and what it will become.” Juxtaposing Mackie’s interests in the ideas of “wild” and “civilised,” the ambiguous nature of how we perceive nature and the contexts in which we try to manipulate or control it are questioned but never fully answered. Instead the space is suspended in a conceptual, metamorphosing limbo land. On show until December 16.
Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize National Portrait Gallery
The annual selection of some 60 works of the brightest and most exciting photographers from across the world has arrived once again at the National Portrait Gallery. The Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait prize is now synonymous for it’s broad excellence on selection with pieces being chosen from across all levels of portraiture – commissioned, formal and spontaneous. The five winners have now been announced as Jill Wooster, Dona Schwartz, Jasper Clarke, David Knight with top brass going to Jooney Woodward for her sublimely fierce Harriet and Gentleman Jack.