An electrifying audio-visual work by Ryoji Ikeda and a space-morphing dome by Anish Kapoor are among an extraordinary cache of artworks bringing to life evolving cultural hub Store Studios at London’s 180 The Strand.
Coinciding with Frieze London, the installations are presented by Store X The Vinyl Factory in partnership with leading organisations including Lisson Gallery, Serpentine Galleries and König Galerie. They play with the building’s Brutalist architecture and challenge the boundaries of creative disciplines – part of Store Studios’ mission to reframe what a cultural institution can be in the 21st century.
‘We are a platform for creative expression and exchange operating at the cultural intersection of art, music, fashion, lifestyle and work,’ says Alex Eagle, creative director of Store X, which encompasses Store Studios. ‘We see limitless scope in thel blurring of public and private organisations today.’
Ryoji Ikeda’s ‘Test Pattern [No.12]’ – commissioned by Store X The Vinyl Factory – is a discombobulating experience, in which black and white bar code-like patterns pulse in the darkness. The Japanese artist and electronic composer converts data from music and photography into monochrome binary patterns, immersing gallery-goers in a dazzling kinetic environment.
Also in the line-up is a pseudo-documentary science fiction film acclaimed at this year’s Venice Biennale by Canadian artist Jeremy Shaw (exhibited in collaboration with König Galerie). Capping the building is a bespoke tent, showing a revisualisation of black American history set to a Kanye West soundtrack by artist Arthur Jafa.
‘What is so amazing about Arthur Jafa’s practice is its interdisciplinarity,’ says Hans Ulrich Obrist, artistic director of Serpentine Galleries, which are co-presenting the piece as an epilogue to his show in Kensington Gardens. ‘It’s this idea of bringing all the disciplines together and that’s what Ryoji Ikeda has been doing for many decades too – connecting the world of sound to the world of visual art.’
Interdisciplinarity is also at the heart of Everything At Once – a major group exhibition of 45 works at Store Studios presented in partnership with Lisson Gallery to mark the latter’s 50th anniversary.
The show riffs on John Cage’s pronouncement in 1966 (a year before Lisson was born) that ‘Nowadays everything happens at once and our souls are conveniently electronic (omniattentive)’. This jibes with today’s ‘anxiety-ridden age of ceaseless communication’, as Lisson puts it. Video works by Marina Abramović, Laure Prouvost and Susan Hiller are shown alongside Kapoor’s floating giant dome from 1998 and a sound chamber by Haroon Mirza in an exhibition that spans the decades.
‘Instead of doing a historical exhibit, Everything At Once is about the past meeting the present and future, collapsing time,’ says Ossian Ward, head of content at Lisson Gallery. ‘We decided to do projects we couldn’t stage in a gallery setting.’
New and past works expand and toy with the boundaries of this highly flexible space, including Ai Weiwei’s giant wallpaper installation that stretches 50m along the building and depicts people’s continuing movement across the globe. Meanwhile a monumental glass-and-steel pavilion by Dan Graham plays with the reflections of visitors and the building itself.
Adds Lisson Gallery curatorial directory Greg Hilty: ‘We wanted to show the energy of the artists, and this couldn’t be a better place to express it.’
The 5-show exhibition at Store Studios, 180 The Strand, runs until 10 December 2017