Jim Lambie (1964 − )
Jim Lambie was born in Glasgow and studied at Glasgow School of Art.
In an interview with Stephen Hepworth for the British Council exhibition Tailsliding in 2001 Lambie described his work "When I start a piece of work I'm dealing essentially with sculpture and I'm thinking about architecture or the way something functions or doesn't function within a space. There are a whole lot of questions that arise. For example, thinking about the way I would tend to deal with a space in terms of the tape floor pieces. The rhythms that are built with coloured tape within the architecture of the space could suggest music, though conceptually the piece is about negotiating that space. Placing myself within that space, setting aside given parameters and working myself through those edges, pulling them closer together. They're all sculptural decisions. The fact that the music would bleed into that area for me is a good thing, but it's not the essential thing. I think the music thing in my day to day life is important to me in terms of records and imagery and dj-ing and things like that. And I think it's inevitable that this would bleed into the work. So there are pieces you won't be able to bring music into, and there are pieces you can and that's fine. I'd like to think the work is open-ended enough so that people can bring other ideas into the piece. I'm not setting up edges for people. I'm not telling them what to think. I want the work to expand beyond itself so that people can come to the work and take away their own reading of it.
It's about territories and spaces. The psychology of knowing that there is a space beyond the space that you're sitting in, and how you can sit in a room and still be able to imagine the other room next door. Groupie (1995) was about trying to negotiate those two spaces, and have a piece of sculpture that would exist in both at the same time. Inflating a balloon with my breath through a hole in the partition wall into the space within and then into the second room beyond, became the vehicle that allowed me to speak about space in terms of material. I think for any piece of work, you need a good grounding, you need a conceptual base. That's what makes the work strong. That 'between-ness' happens with the cut-out records sleeves where I'm actually exposing the interior of the sleeve. Done in a particular way, these became like Rorschach sculptures, taped up and folded out. I was thinking about spaces between, like the wallpaper, the wall and how you can squeeze yourself into that between space in your head. So it's all part of an ongoing thing about thinking about spaces. Psychological spaces that you would dip into.
I have these ongoing ideas in my head about making work, like I'd like to make a painting, I'd like to make a corner piece, I'd like to make a floor piece, and how can I actually realise that? How can I make a painting without having to lift a paintbrush? The main impetus behind the record decks was thinking about making a piece of kinetic sculpture. Record decks are a very familiar piece of equipment to me. It came about just dj-ing in my house, messing about for a couple of hours on the decks. Out of the corner of my eye, I was finding the deck that didn't have a record on was grabbing my attention. It didn't have an identity yet because there was no record on it, no track lined up to be mixed in. It spins really slowly in expectation, becoming like this hypnotic field - it could be a hypnotic field. Watching it was trance-like. The record decks occupy space as well; they give a kind of non-audible soundtrack to the spaces. I prefer they be shown in pairs, constantly spinning in a state of transition. It's always this stage between, so the non-existent soundtrack's always mixing between the two decks. So you're in this space between. It's that space that you find yourself in with music. You put a record on and it's like the edges disappear. You're in a psychological space. You don't sit there thinking about the music, you're listening to the music. You're inside that space that the music's making for you. I think the spaces underneath the decks are an extension of that psychological space, a visual manifestation their identity. It 's like pulling the edges off that deck with the glitter - pulling all those edges together and making it one complete thing. A space that I could just play inside of.
The soul sticks for me looks like some religious relic. There's kind of mantra set up in production, just wrapping the twine round about objects that are taped to the bamboo. The process goes on and on for hours and hours. I'm just sitting there doing it. You do hit a low point, then you just keep going at it because it begins to actually feel good. Once I'm half way through it, I'm really into making the thing. Within a mantra, you're trying to empty out, trying to get to a point, you don't know where the point is, but you're trying to get close to it. A place where you can reach some sort of consciousness. So for me, the more I make, the closer I get to that place. I'm still trying to get to it. I want it all to open up for me and for anybody looking at the work. There are just too many edges. Rather than create edges, I want to abandon them. You don't need so many edges. Things are not that complicated."
Tailsliding, The British Council, London 2001
Work of art made with paint on a surface. Often the surface, also called a support, is a tightly stretched piece of canvas, paper or a wooden panel. Painting involves a wide range of techniques and materials, along with the artist's intellectual concerns effecting the content of a work.
A three-dimensional work of art. Such works may be carved, modelled, constructed, or cast. Sculptures can also be described as assemblage, in the round, relief, and made in a huge variety of media. Contemporary practice also includes live elements, as in Gilbert & George 'Living Sculpture' as well as broadcast work, radio or sound sculpture.
- Germany, Emsdetten, GALERIE MUNSTERLAND
- Ireland, Cork, Lewis Glucksman Gallery
- UK, Walsall, The New Art Gallery
- UK, London, Whitechapel Art Gallery
- Kazakhstan, Almaty, State Museum Of Fine Arts
- Pakistan, Islamabad, PCNA - National Art Gallery
- Bangladesh, Dhaka, Bengal Gallery Of Fine Arts
- Mexico, Monterrey, Museo De Arte Contemporaneo De Monterrey
- Mexico, Mexico City, Museo Tamayo Arte Contemporaneo
- Finland, Turku, Turku Art Museum
- Yugoslavia, Belgrade, Museum Of Contemporary Art
- Czech Republic, Brno, House Of Artists
- Estonia, Tallinn, Museum Of Contemporary Art
- Lithuania, Vilnius, Centre Of Contemporary Art
- Norway, Bergen, Kunsthall
- Spain, Salamanca, Museum Of Contemporary Art