So where DO stripes come from? As a keen seeker-outer of all things stripey, particularly if there’s bold and clashing colours, I was thrilled to see Leeds Art Gallery’s latest installation features not only stripes, but all the colours of the rainbow, and on a grand scale.
Australian artist Nike Savvas scored 11 out of ten in my book by sending the message to visitors to her exhibition of stripes, colours, fabulous shapes and shadows that she’s very happy for photographs of her work to be taken while many of her contemporaries absolutely forbid any such snapping and clicking from hoy polloi.
The central installation ‘Liberty and Anarchy’, or the Superb Stripeyness Centrepiece, as I have re-named it, takes over the largest room in the gallery and involves 18 large screens which hold hundreds of individually placed, taut plastic, brightly coloured ribbons. The blurb says the installation can only be fully appreciated in person as it creates a three-dimensional moiré effect. Personally I wanted to dart in and out of the screens, running my fingers across them like some giant harp, but Nike’s openness with her art only goes so far and the nice lady on the plastic seat with the walkie talkie wagged her finger and shook her head disapprovingly as I bounded over. Noel had already disappeared at this point, finding a sudden interest in the Atkinson Grimshaws in the next room, he’s always admired the Leeds artist with an eye for night scenes, though I find them lacking in the stripes and colour palettes. Sometimes I think I embarrass him.
The stripey stuff is on at the gallery until the 24 February. Atkinson Grimshaw is there for good.