随着爱丁堡城市立天文台的重建,当代艺术和传统能结合起来吗?

With Collective Gallery Reopening at Edinburgh’s City Observatory, Can Contemporary Art and Heritage Be Combined?

将遗迹与当代艺术相结合可能是一件棘手的事情。尽管如此,位于爱丁堡的卡尔顿山顶,19世纪城市天文台遗址上,视觉艺术共和(Visual arts organisation Collective)价值450万英镑的新开发项目中,崎岖美丽的环境却将两者融合在了一起。而且,凭借其经过精心修复的历史建筑和新增的综合建筑,结果令人印象深刻。它将自2009年以来一直被破坏的,未使用过的遗址改造成了一个由景观草坪、砾石小径和多用途空间组成的墙体整齐的综合体。

在五个不同大小的独立建筑中,新的空间结合了许多常见的艺术建筑元素——两个画廊、一个餐厅、商店、图书馆、教室——以及它自己独有的地方,例如新近重新粉刷的1831年的天文望远镜;经过修复的1818年由爱丁堡建筑师威廉·亨利·普莱费尔William Henry Playfair设计的古典希腊风格城市天文台的东部门廊,它生动地提醒人们这座建筑为什么存在——望远镜主要用于通过观测天空来精确设定时间。现在的目标则是将艺术带入一个新的语境,或者正如视觉艺术共和所说:“公共体将自己定位为一种新型的天文台,邀请公众通过当代艺术的镜头观察周围的世界。”

With Collective Gallery Reopening at Edinburgh’s City Observatory, Can Contemporary Art and Heritage Be Combined? - 随着爱丁堡城市天文台集体美术馆的重新开放,当代艺术和传统能结合起来吗?

Collective, Edinburgh, view of the Hillside, the City Dome and the City Observatory. Photograph: Tom Nolan

Collective,爱丁堡,山坡,城市圆顶和城市天文台的风景。照片:汤姆·诺兰

这是一份雄心勃勃、甚至有点用力过猛的声明,但感觉与2013年搬迁到卡尔顿山之后共享空间的发展方式是一致的。以现在的面貌——它成立于1984年——它不再仅仅是一个支持艺术家创作和展览新作品的美术馆;它也是这座城市珍贵文化资产之一的监护人,也是苏格兰首都旅游热线中的一部分。这是其在Cockburn街上的先前化身的可见性和责任的巨大飞跃,在那里,它从一个小型的玻璃幕墙画廊,成为一个独立的咖啡店,到展示广泛的艺术家的作品,包括露丝伊万的早期节目,Nathaniel Mellors,Grace Swindt和Jeremy Deller。这个新场地是与爱丁堡市议会合作开发的,爱丁堡市议会已经批准了视觉艺术共和对这些建筑的25年租约。经过五年的筹款、规划应用和建设工作才最终启动这个目的,这中间出现了一些戏剧性的变故。例如2015年,项目的原建筑单位马尔科姆·弗雷泽建筑事务所(Malcolm Fraser Architects)开始清算,这才有了 Collective Architecture事务所(没有关系)被引入。

With Collective Gallery Reopening at Edinburgh’s City Observatory, Can Contemporary Art and Heritage Be Combined? - 随着爱丁堡城市天文台集体美术馆的重新开放,当代艺术和传统能结合起来吗?

Transit House and City Observatory, Collective, Edinburgh. Photograph: Tom Nolan

公共交通站和城市观测站,集体,爱丁堡。照片:汤姆·诺兰.

这一过程的结果被美妙地限制并巧妙地融入了场地——就山坡来说,情况就是这样,山坡容纳了办公空间和美术馆,并被塞进市中心天文台后面的土堆里。它的屋顶兼作爱丁堡对莱斯和福斯湾的眺望平台,而且它也不是建筑师充分利用风景的唯一例子。独立餐馆,The Lookout,位于工地的西北角,其从地板到天花板的窗户允许用餐者向下俯瞰脚底的城市。它是由位于爱丁堡皇家露台花园卡尔顿山脚下的“园丁别墅”后面的团队管理的,它是一家“目的地”餐馆,没有任何东西表明你在艺术中心,尤其是标价高达50英镑的日常菜单,例如,电源19英镑—26英镑。手头拮据的艺术家不太可能成为常客。

With Collective Gallery Reopening at Edinburgh’s City Observatory, Can Contemporary Art and Heritage Be Combined? - 随着爱丁堡城市天文台集体美术馆的重新开放,当代艺术和传统能结合起来吗?

Dineo Seshee Bopape, ‘When Spirituality was a Baby’ (detail), 2018, City Dome, Collective, Edinburgh. Photograph: Tom Nolan

迪诺·塞希·波帕帕,“当精神是婴儿”摄影:汤姆·诺兰.

“眺望”似乎是“共和”所从事的平衡行动的缩影——它如何实现网站以游客为中心的传统作用,同时又将当代艺术和艺术家置于其工作的核心?最明显的是,两个非常不同的画廊空间可以做到这一点。位于东北角的“城市圆顶”始建于1895年,最初是为了容纳一个更大的、附加的望远镜而建造的,它是你通过主东入口(经过一个布局良好的咖啡亭)进入工地的第一座建筑。在重建工作真正开始之前,迪尼奥·塞希·波帕斯在2014-15年间就已经将其作为画廊空间使用,它的推出展览——一个名为“亲近与暗示”的全场展览的一部分——是由迪尼奥·塞希·波帕斯兴致勃勃地设计的,以风挡泥浆为特色。硬块、泥土、石头、幻灯片和装满难测液体的罐子。参照时间的流逝,天文学和占星学,物体排列成星座,混凝土廊道地板被凿成凹坑和条纹。它溢出整个地板和暴露的砖墙,充分利用了圆形空间。

在规模较小、专门建造的希尔赛德美术馆中,克劳斯·韦伯的“纪念碑”展出了一幅雪人的冷藏模型,雪人的雪花几乎完成了。一个鼻子和一个啤酒瓶的顶部。这幅名为《法格曼》的作品被提议,但尚未实现,它被设计成坐落在集体遗址东南角的游戏集市纪念碑上。对于像爱丁堡这样到处都是“伟人”纪念碑的城市里,幽默的抗议肯定不会被认可。

With Collective Gallery Reopening at Edinburgh’s City Observatory, Can Contemporary Art and Heritage Be Combined? - 随着爱丁堡城市天文台集体美术馆的重新开放,当代艺术和传统能结合起来吗?

James N Hutschinson, ‘Rumours of a New Planet’, 2018, library of the City Observatory, Collective, Edinburgh. Photograph: Tom Nolan

James N Hutschinson,“新行星的传闻”,2018,爱丁堡市集体天文台图书馆。照片:汤姆·诺兰

艺术也以其他方式融入这个网站。在外面,格拉斯哥艺术家泰莎·林奇创造了“转弯”,三个永久性的“游戏雕塑”/座位区,它们由聚焦相机镜头形状的变化而形成,还有新近委托的音频作品,这是艺术家们正在进行的“观察者漫步”系列的一部分。TS Catherine Payton和James N Hutchinson。哈钦森还在城市天文台的图书馆空间里举办了一个名为“新行星的传闻”的小型展览,其中重点展出了12幅有故事可讲的植物图画。不寻常地,也是在艺术共和的当代使命方面,天文台西门廊的店铺主要存放着苏格兰艺术家特意委托的作品,包括凯蒂·施瓦布的水毡斗篷和麦克的手提包、汗衫、杯子和其他物品。彼得。虽然它的新家提供了相当优雅的,国家信托式的环境,这些行为是集体继续致力于当代艺术家工作的证据-它是一种小东西,提高这个新家园的东西超过一个成功的传承遗产项目。

2018年11月24日星期六上午10点,爱丁堡

Chris Sharratt
格拉斯哥的自由撰稿人和编辑。
FRIZE特稿 ARThing编译

 

Combining heritage and contemporary art can be a tricky business. Collective’s new GBP£4.5million development of the 19th century City Observatory site has nevertheless brought the two together in a ruggedly beautiful setting atop Edinburgh’s Calton Hill. And, with its sensitively restored historic buildings and discretely integrated additions, the results are impressive. It has transformed what had been a vandalized, unused site since 2009 into a neatly-realized walled complex of landscaped lawns, gravel pathways and multipurpose spaces.

Spread across five separate buildings of varying sizes, the new Collective combines many of the usual arts building elements – two galleries, a restaurant, shop, library, education room – alongside its own unique touches, such as the freshly repainted Transit Telescope dating from 1831. Situated in the eastern portico of the restored classical Greek-style City Observatory, designed by Edinburgh architect William Henry Playfair in 1818, it’s a vivid reminder of why this building exists – the telescope was principally used for accurate time setting through its tracking of the night sky. The stated aim now is to bring art into a new context, or as the gallery puts it: ‘Collective will position itself as a new kind of observatory, inviting the public to view the world around them through the lens of contemporary art.’

It’s an ambitious, and perhaps slightly laboured statement, but one that feels in keeping with the way Collective has evolved since relocating to Calton Hill in 2013. In its current guise – it was founded in 1984 – it’s no longer simply a gallery that supports artists to create and exhibit new work; it’s also a custodian of one of the city’s prized cultural assets and part of the much-visited Scottish capital’s tourist offer. It’s a huge leap in visibility and responsibility from its previous incarnation on Cockburn Street, where, in a small, glass-fronted gallery which has since become an independent coffee shop, Collective presented work by a vast range of artists including early shows from Ruth Ewan, Nathaniel Mellors, Grace Swindt and Jeremy Deller. The new site has been developed in partnership with Edinburgh City Council which has granted Collective a 25-year lease on the buildings. It’s taken five years of fund raising, planning applications and construction work to reach this point and there’s been the odd drama along the way. In 2015, for instance, the project’s original architect, Malcolm Fraser Architects, went into liquidation, resulting in Glasgow’s Collective Architecture (no relation) being brought in.

The results of that process are beautifully restrained and subtly incorporated into the site – literally so in the case of The Hillside, which houses office space and a gallery, and is tucked into the mound behind the central City Observatory. Its roof doubles as a viewing platform to look out across Edinburgh towards Leith and the Firth of Forth, and it’s not the only example of the architects making the most of the views. The standalone restaurant, The Lookout, sits on the north-west corner of the site, its floor-to-ceiling windows allowing diners to peer down on the city below. It’s run by the team behind the well-regarded Gardener’s Cottage, which sits at the foot of Calton Hill on Edinburgh's Royal Terrace Gardens, and is very much a ‘destination’ restaurant; there’s nothing about it that says you’re in an art centre, least of all the prices (there’s a £50 fixed menu, for example, and mains are £19–£26). Cash-strapped artists are unlikely to be regulars.

The Lookout seems to epitomize the balancing act Collective is engaged in – how does it fulfil the site’s essentially tourist-focused, heritage role while also keeping contemporary art and artists at the heart of what it does? Most obviously its two very different gallery spaces are there to do just that. The City Dome in the north-east corner, which dates from 1895 and was originally built to house a larger, additional telescope, is the first building you come to on entering the site through the main east entrance (after a well-placed coffee kiosk). Already previously used as a gallery space from 2014–15 before the redevelopment work started in earnest, its launch exhibition – part of a site-wide show titled ‘Affinity and Allusion’ – is an exuberantly engaging installation by Dineo Seshee Bopape that features breezeblock-sized mud bricks, soil, stones, slide projections and jars filled with hard to determine liquids. Referencing the passing of time, astronomy and astrology, objects are arranged in constellations and the concrete gallery floor is gouged into to create dips and striations. It spills across the floor and onto the exposed-brick walls, making full use of the circular space.

In the smaller, purpose-built Hillside gallery – which Collective intends to primarily use for its ongoing Satellites programme for ‘emerging artists and producers in Scotland’ – is Klaus Weber’s ‘The Nonument’, featuring a refrigerated maquette of a snowman with a nearly-finished cigarette for a nose and the top of a beer bottle for its head. Called Fagman, it’s a proposed but unrealized work designed to sit on the Playfair Monument at the south-east corner of the Collective site. A humorous riposte to the kind of monuments to ‘great men’ that a city like Edinburgh is full of, Playfair would certainly not have approved.

With Collective Gallery Reopening at Edinburgh’s City Observatory, Can Contemporary Art and Heritage Be Combined? - 随着爱丁堡城市天文台集体美术馆的重新开放,当代艺术和传统能结合起来吗?

James N Hutschinson, ‘Rumours of a New Planet’, 2018, library of the City Observatory, Collective, Edinburgh. Photograph: Tom Nolan

Art is woven into the site in a number of other ways, too. Outside, the Glasgow artist Tessa Lynch has created Turns, three permanent ‘play sculptures’/seating areas which take their form from the changing shapes of a focusing camera lens, and there are newly commissioned audio pieces – part of the ongoing ‘Observers’ Walks’ series – by artists Catherine Payton and James N Hutchinson. There’s also a small exhibition by Hutchinson, ‘Rumours of a New Planet’, in the City Observatory’s library space, a highlight of which is a series of 12 botanical drawings that have stories to tell. Unusually, and significantly in terms of Collective’s contemporary art mission, the shop in the Observatory’s west portico is mainly stocked with specially-commissioned works by Scottish artists, including a waterpoof poncho by Katie Schwab and tote bags, sweat tops, mugs and other items by Mick Peter. While its new home provides a rather genteel, National Trust-style setting, such acts are evidence of Collective’s continued commitment to the work of contemporary artists – it’s the kind of small thing that elevates this new home to something more than a successfully delivered heritage project.

Collective, Edinburgh opens to the public at 10 am on Saturday 24 November 2018.

Chris Sharratt

Chris Sharratt is a freelance writer and editor based in Glasgow.

 FRIZE特稿 ARThing编译

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