These three works, all from Rut Blees Luxemburg’s 2013 series London Dust, make subtle comments on new development in the City of London and on the disjuncture between fantasy and reality.

In Aplomb (St Paul’s), Blees Luxemburg’s large-scale photograph shows a hoarding for a new 300m-tall building called The Pinnacle. The CGI image on the hoarding depicts a futuristic skyscraper alongside the iconic dome of St Paul’s Cathedral. In the foreground a scaffolding pole and sandbag are a symbol of the thwarted ambition which has seen The Pinnacle put on hold after reaching only seven storeys high. The photograph Walkie-Talkie Melted My Golden Calf shows the same hoarding beyond a stone surface glittering with what looks like liquid gold. In reality – like the CGI image – this is only an illusion, a trick played by the artist with water and light. The third work in the series, London/Winterreise, is a film that in one long tracking shot takes the viewer on a walk from the fashionable Shoreditch district, past an Occupy protestor camp, and into the heart of the City of London. Numerous construction sites are seen along the way and a soundtrack plays a reinterpretation of Schubert’s song cycle Winterreise, a sad and lonely lament on lost love. Now in the collection of the Museum of London, Blees Luxemburg’s three works offer a powerful meditation on the changing fortunes of the British capital in the early 21st century.

Provenance

The artist.


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