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Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Angus Fairhurst exhibition, Leuven

The impressive M museum in Leuven, Belgium, is currently showing the work of British artist Angus Fairhurst.

Fairhurst, who committed suicide in 2008, was part of the Young British Artist movement in the1990s, but never achieved the same level of fame as some of his contemporaries (Damien Hirst, Sarah Lucas etc). I'd never heard of him before going to the exhibition but liked his stuff a lot - he mixed visual puns with social commentary to produce direct, funny and thoughtful work.

He used a staggering range of media - paintings, sculptures, installations, photography, film, collage cartoons. The results varied in style but there's a common thread of absurdist humour (and lots of apes)throughout.

There's some images of Fairhurst's work at the Tate collection (mostly printed material) and some more at Sadie Coles HQ and ArtNet.

He was  fond of practical jokes and once connected the phone lines of London galleries together. His obituary in Frieze gives a transcript of the resulting exchanges.

The exhibition runs till 15th August.

Also currently on show at M is Belgium Minimal/abstract artist Philippe Van Snick which is worth a look, see an example of his work below, though I'm not sure it's particularly representative  - most of uses simple blocks of colour and lines and repitition to explore mathematical relationships (or that's the impression I came away with).

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