Solid Mass

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Hide, 2015 black and white clay, forged nails Lotti V Closs

In a virginal new space in the centre of Nottingham just across the way from the Nottingham Contemporary entrance (the enterprising Jennie Syson’s new gallery) there’s a long plinth on which sit nine new table top sculptures – the exhibition is Lotti V Closs‘s Mass.  In a way they might be rather old fashioned but for the way in which form is conjured up.  After all they are ‘proper’ sculptures – not least in the array of materials deployed that range from alabaster (a ‘proper’ Nottingham material that) through clay, brass, serpentine and soap stone and onto rubber, mahogany and other timbers. There are three wall mounted pieces, a panel or two, one that is mainly composed of the negative spaces of the three pieces that sit across from it winking back at it and saying in a sly way ‘look I can be part of something else and yet still be a part of you too’.  And two drawings…and what drawings, the one so slight and using colour in a spare manner but so beautifully judged.  Colour that crops up just a little here and there…that glowing red square thats pushed into the black clay purse…and elsewhere so carefully accenting the ways in which the inherent material colours the form in each piece so lovingly caressed into existence.  Juxtapositioning and draping, resting, supporting of each formal characteristic is the order of the day…and an abiding, achingly passionate love of material and form.  If I was reminded of anything here it was Alison Wilding‘s early work that I once had the privilege of working with, a manner of respecting and yet bending material into form that conjured up surprising and original poetic nuances and whispered suggestions of things half remembered or dreamt.  And if comparisons there must be (and in 2015 how can they be avoided?) for me there are none higher.  I hope that Lotti can sustain this level of engagement – if she can then we are in for real treats in the future.

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