17.06.09 → 26.09.09
Having chosen sculpture, photography and film as his tools of expression, Darren Almond deals, in his work, with the concepts of time and duration, denying their original essence as objectively measurable units moving within the confines of a single dimension, and attempting in every new project to re-approach and redefine them.
Time, layered and malleable, expands and shrinks since every temporal experience is subjective and may be perceived in different ways. Springing directly from the notions of time and duration, memory, whether personal or collective, is the second point of reference in Almond’s work, while capturing and recording the nexus where space-time meets historic reality constitutes the essence of his art.
In 1998, he started an ongoing series of landscapes, under the title 15-Minute Moon in which he only used the light of the full moon and a long time exposure, magically turning night into day and capturing what the naked human eye is unable to see. This experiment resulted in radiant nocturnal landscapes of breathtaking beauty, bathed in an eerie, bright silver light. Always unpopulated and desolate, these landscapes reveal one’s isolation and the transitoriness of human nature, providing, according to Almond, a point of entry into memory.
Constantly investigating how time and space intersect with history and always employing the same technique, Almond initially followed the path forged by the old masters such as Constable, Turner and Cézanne, taking pictures of the landscapes that had inspired them in the English countryside (Flatford) and the French Alps (Chamonix, Montagne Saint Victoire). He continues his wandering to Europe’s most remote places and then to California, China, Tibet, Japan, Siberia, and even to the far reaches of the Earth, the Arctic and the Antarctic.
Upon his first contact with Almond’s landscapes, the viewer feels he is facing an ultimate reality. His spirituality soars steeply to the transcendental while at the same time he experiences the insignificance of human existence before the grandeur of nature. His psyche oscillates between exhilaration and fear and the limits of his soul’s endurance are tested, as his place in the universe shrinks violently in the face of nature’s absoluteness, conveyed by Almond, through an utterly overwhelming and mystic vision.
In his first show at Xippas Gallery in Athens, Darren Almond is presenting an overview of his photographic work from the 2001-2008 period, together with two wall sculptures, one diary-clock of 2000 that shows the days of the week and a train plate of 2009 which reads 0:00, both works exploring Almond’s diverse notions of travelling and of the passage of time.
Darren Almond was born in 1971 in Wigan, UK. He lives and works in London. His solo exhibitions include Parasol Unit, London (2008), SITE Santa Fe (2007), Museum Folkwang, Essen (2006), K21, Düsseldorf (2005), Fondazione Nicola Trussardi, Milan (2003), Tate Britain, London (2001), Kunsthalle Zürich (2001), De Appel, Amsterdam (2001) and The Renaissance Society, Chicago (1999). He has participated in numerous important group exhibitions including Tate Triennial, Tate Britain, London (2009), Albertina Museum, Vienna (2008), ICA, Philadelphia (2007), Museum of Cycladic Art, Athens (2007), MCA, Chicago (2005), The Turner Prize, Tate Britain, London (2005), La Collección Jumex, Mexico City (2003), Fondation Beyeler, Basel (2003), Berlin Biennale (2001), Venice Biennale (2003), Fondazione Sandretto Re Rebaudengo, Turino (1999) and ‘Sensation’ (1997-1999): Young British Artists from the Saatchi Collection, Royal Academy of Arts, London.