Gallery Girl – Gesamtkunstwerk

What's on ArtReview's favourite art mole's wishlist this week?

By Gallery Girl

Martin Soto Climent, Desire, 2009, courtesy the artist and Clifton Benevento, New York

It’s a new year! Normally, my New Year resolutions would appear at this point, but this year I have just the one: to live my entire life as a Gesamtkunstwerk. That’s right – the total work of art vibe, so think Gilbert and George, or the horned bloke from Matthew Barney’s Cremaster 3 who never took off his outfit, or those annoying transvestites in tutus who parade round art fairs. 

The first thing I’m going to do is radically alter my wardrobe. Out goes my Valentino Va Va Voom crystal-embellished leather shoulder bag and in comes a weird but sexy purse within a purse within a purse with protruding leather tongues. This elaborate work is called, Desire, and made by Mexican artist Martin Soto Climent. For a burly Mexican fella, this is a man who certainly makes a visceral purse I can tell you. 

I’m then going to obtain a paper mask of Eko Nugroho’s recent exhibition, We Are What We Mask. The kooky Indonesian artist loves his masks, which are half shaman, half astronaut. This is headgear for people who are unafraid to become art – like me. In particular I liked the mask which proclaimed ‘Faith in Shopping’ because I can tell you this New Year’s sweep is going to clean out the Editor’s J. P. Morgan Palladium credit card. 

Turning to my bijou Mayfair mews house, it’s out with the ‘Jasper Conran for Wedgewood’ crockery and in with the dystopic landscape glazed stoneware of Aaron Angell. Sure it’s not going to be so easy to eat my Mark Hix-inspired beetroot curry off these vessels but I want my guests to be challenged out of their bourgeois norms. And so whilst I’m at altering the dining room I’m going to junk the Faudet-Harrison Crosscut table and replace it with Michaela Meise’s mysterious round table-desk-art work, Chelsea Kramer, that was recently on view at her show at Johann König’s gallery. Eat off that, my fellow hidebound liberals!

Then I’m going to nick a couple of the bookshelves from Kader Attia’s installation Continuum of Repair: The Light of Jacobs Ladder currently on view at Whitechapel Gallery. Much of this art as furniture schtick is related to the ancient Oriental belief system called Relational Aesthetics that many believe was the precursor to Feng Shui. Finally, when this is all sorted, I’m going to head out into the world with ‘The Art of Walking: a field guide'. Edited by David Evans, this book will transform my daily short stroll to Mount Street Deli into a work of art, and finally, wearing my Nugroho mask and brandishing my Soto Climent purse I shall become art.

22 January 2014