“.. you’d expect him to walk back into the room at any moment and pick up his brushes.”
Castlefield Gallery’s forthcoming exhibition includes a reconstruction of Piet Mondrian’s studio at 15 East 59th Street in New York. The artist lived there for five months between 1st October 1943 and 1st February 1944 working on his final, ultimately unfinished, painting `Victory Boogie Woogie.` The studio with its idiosyncratic, home-made furniture and its whitewashed walls patterned with brightly coloured pieces of card was as much a work of art as a working studio space. For six weeks after his death in 1944 the studio was opened to the public as an act of homage before being dismantled. Since then the building itself, close to Central Park, has been demolished.
The reconstruction is a new work by David Alker and Peter Liddell made specifically for Castlefield Gallery, which was established as an artist-run gallery space. In broader terms it references the way in which the contemporary notion of the ‘Artists Studio’ has become an extension of the mythology of the artist.
Mondrian’s Studio is one in a series of art historical reconstructions by David Alker and Peter Liddell. Others have included The Last Futurist Exhibition based on Kasimir Malevich’s installation for the Dobychina Gallery Petrograd and The Installation for Galerie Iris Clert based on ‘Le Vide’ by Yves Klein.
David Alker and Peter Liddell are based in Manchester and London and have collaborated since 1998. Recent exhibitions of their work have included We Go Round And Round In The Night And Are Consumed By Fire at Comme Ca Gallery in New York, Ouroboros: The Music of the Spheres at CCA Glasgow and The Last Futurist Exhibition in the Walker and Static in the 2002 Liverpool Biennial.