Have you ever wondered what it might be like to be cradled in the arms of a rainbow?
If so, then you’ll find the answer ensconced within the arc-of-screenprints, in “40 A Kate Moss Retrospective”, by ultra-talented artist, Russell Marshall, currently showing at the enchanting ‘Imitate Modern’ art gallery!
On one level, your eyes race to absorb the high-definition, technicolour dreamscapes which coat the walls. Time flits by as fast as you can blink, whilst you remain transfixed by the neon shocks of sherbet-pink and acid-yellow, bouncing like laser-beams from a New Year’s Eve disco-ball! Quick-as-a-wink, you are compelled to follow the spectral-story wherever it leads and begin to register shades which resound like a chromatic scale… Prints in-the-key of shimmering-silver and incandescent-pearl are laden with outlines of indellible impressions…
Fully-acquainted with the cornucopia of exceptional colour-charts, you then begin to focus-pull onto the subsequent layer of visual stimulae, present in the undoubted recognition of, not only a face, but ‘The Face’ of Kate Moss, staring back, as if to guide you from one incarnation to another.
It is at this point, that your heart-rate evens out…
The ‘pop’ which Russell has told me he would like the palette to have, has been achieved and so begins a new narrative, of taking a visual tour around Kate’s career, through the viewfinder of the former journalist and editor. The immediacy of being subjectively engaged at such a rapid rate, yields to a futher immersion, into a state of ‘objectivity’, yet it is neither stereotypically cold nor separate. It is, in fact, replete with a distinct clarity, founded in true warmth and admiration for a woman of real character, who has eclipsed the notion of ‘celebrity’ and, rather, re–defined and re–valued it. This facilitates a deeper connection to the potent colour-combinations, which serve to highlight the myriad facets to her own, vibrant personality. Furthermore, Russell’s editing sensibility is masterfully employed, in exhibiting specific screenprints which, at once, reveal the wide-eyed potential of a young girl, spotted at the age of 14, whilst also uncovering her scintillating, Bardot-èsque vulnerability, her ethereal elegance, swathed in full-length gowns and floral-sprays and an haute couture-regality, resplendent in Vivienne Westwood!
An added spin to the retrospective, it that of the journalistic element, for as the walls have Kate’s eyes, they also have her words! Quotes such as “Never complain, never explain” quietly indicate a certain pragmatism, whilst others celebrating the ‘girl-about-town’, like “I haven’t partied since last Friday”, positively scream from the rafters! Displayed alongside columns of biographical copy, by Amy Watts, the twist of presenting silk-screens, which constitute a statement as to the real definition of celebrity, in a 3-D newspaper format, is both witty and entirely evocative of the wondrous days of the old-fashioned handprinting-press! Encompassed by musical soundwaves dripping with Britpop, the White Stripes and Primal Scream, the audio-visual, launch-night mind-meld, completes the journey!
In essence, “4o A Kate Moss Retrospective” is a startling adventure with the ability to engage the viewer, by transporting them through the career life-cycle of a living legend. From the girl-next-door, whose diminutive stature should have ruled her out of the modelling industry, but which actually set her apart, to the celebrated Mother, Supermodel and Designer, Russell Marshall is a maestro of multi-dimensional expression. The single plane of a screen is doused in prismatic vibrance, which facilitates an optical appreciation of beautiful images…Yet, in accompanying them with written and quoted content, Kate’s joie-de-vivre becomes even more apparent. What with each of the ten works being a limited edition of one (the variations of which can be chosen from ten unique colourways), the concept of honouring individuality, is perpetuated. According to the artist, himself, there might even be a gentle ‘tap’ of the frame during its production, just to add a perfect imperfection, which is undetectable to the naked eye, of course, yet, intrinsically embedded within each wonderful work!
It is this eloquence of embracing the idiosyncratic and the courage to express it, which, almost a week after the private viewing, still echoes within. Whether or not you find yourself in the spotlight, the truth of who you really are, will always enable you to shine. Such an enduring and empowering message was shared by Russell Marshall on Kate Moss’s 40th birthday and I wholeheartedly encourage you to do the ‘grand tour’ for yourself, because the writing’s on the wall… this incredible show is an undeniable hit!
“40 A KATE MOSS RETROSPECTIVE” RUNS FROM: 17TH JANUARY > 15TH FEBRUARY 2014 AT: IMITATE MODERN, 27A DEVONSHIRE STREET, LONDON, W1G 6PN ~ MON>FRI: 10a.m > 6p.m ~ FREE!
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