The Wick List

Viewing Helen Marten: Sparrows On the Stone

This solo show is brimming with complex ideas, thoughts and feelings. Not surprising, given it contains 12 paintings, 2 floor-based sculptures and 14 works on paper by Helen Marten, the Turner Prize winner best known for her smart use of metaphor and word play.

At the heart of the exhibition is an exploration of the body politic — and a giant metal stick figure prone on the floor. Elsewhere, you’ll see everything from multi-layered abstract works and an embossed bar of soap to fragmented body parts glossed with words by WH Auden, American novelist William H Gass and Marten herself. You’ve guessed it — nothing is quite what it appears.

‘This was meant to be a really simple show: literally just paintings on walls,’ Marten told Frieze Magazine. ‘But, whenever I try to make deliberately smaller works, it just becomes an aggregation of parts and ideas such that it simply has to expand. When meaning twists into a constellation with something else like a knot, it’s incredibly theoretically satisfying.’

There’s a lot to unriddle here but persevere and you’ll reap the rewards. Catch it before it closes at the end of the month.

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04 September 2021 — 30 October 2021
Further information
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