Hahahaha abstraction is subversive and subverted with this show at the Whitechapel. (There you go Thige) This exhibition is from a series titled Keeping it Real. Abstract art in the twentieth century often had ideals of purity and transcendence, but the artists here make abstract work from everyday experiences and materials.
The second in a series of four displays drawn from the D. Daskalopoulos Collection, Greece, includes Dieter Roth’s cheese paintings which decompose in front of your eyes, alongside a rare early collage by Damien Hirst using materials such as books and pencils. Lynda Benglis’ knotted painting is one woman’s wry comment on the masculine heroism of American Abstract Expressionist painting, while David Hammons’ Flight Fantasy, 1995, with gold ornament, crystals and cropped dreadlocks brings black culture to western art. Mike Kelley’s floor sculpture of rugs and toys plays with romantic ideas of childhood innocence, while Daniel Subkoff’s shredded canvas questions whether a painting is always a flat object. Other artists on show include Robert Gober, Nikos Kessanlis, Julie Mehretu, Kori Newkirk and Rosemarie Trockel.