I’ve finally got around to reading through the backlog of Guardian arts column articles I had piled up, so here’s some more commentary for you! This is another by the usually-reliable Jonathan Jones – reliable in that he’s almost always flat-out wrong.
He’s terribly disappointed in the limited scope and basic crapness of the artists, but to me they all look really interesting – especially Richard Woods, but then I’m rather a sucker for printing techniques overall.
I wish I’d managed to see the exhibition myself, but that’s timing for you. I’m rather looking forward to seeing the final result, by Tania Kovats.
I think, personally, that Jones is looking at an overly narrow interpretation of Darwin’s ideas, and that “art inspired by Science” must necessarily be about Science. Kovats is primarily a landscape artist, rooted very firmly in the same cultural soil as Darwin was, although it’s evolved and enrichened itself over time, and she’s chosen to focus as much on that soil – the archaeological context for Darwin’s work – as on the strict scientific themes. For something that is going to become part of the fabric of a museum (the closest thing to a permanent context there is) that’s an ideal choice.