Once again we find ladders used as part of an art exhibition. Not everyone will enjoy the sculpture exhibition Material Intelligence at Huddersfield Art Gallery. Quite a lot of it is an intellectual exercise as the eight artists involved show their own reaction to various familiar materials.
However, there are one or two highlights and plenty of accompanying notes for those with the patience to read them so you are not left completely in the dark! In this exhibition – which comes courtesy of the well-known Kettle’s Yard Gallery in Cambridge – familiar objects, materials and processes are ‘re-purposed’, while remaining recognisable.
Matt Calderwood in Double Ladder (Parallel) uses two buckets, two spades and two sports balls as well as ladders in a delicately balanced work. But more hard-hitting is a piece of his performance art seen on video in which the artist is seen burning gradually through a piece of rope. This leads to a suspended car battery falling and just missing his fingers.
Robert Hall, senior visual arts officer, said: “It is interesting to see a range of different artists’ approach to materials and the idea of the show is to promote artists who work in this way and a group of younger artists who have not shown in this gallery before.”
Some casual gallery visitors will no doubt walk straight past this exhibition, which looks chaotic at first glance. However, some of it, at any rate, is worth a closer look, showing what expressionism is leading to today.