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Rachel Whiteread’s Vitrine
Rachel Whiteread’s Vitrine
Rachel Whiteread Trafalgar Square Project 1998 [Fig.2] Photographic collage, acrylic, and pencil on museum board

Rachel Whiteread Trafalgar Square Project 1998 [Fig.2] Photographic collage, acrylic, and pencil on museum board 50 x 31.5 cm

Contents:

1.

Introduction to Whiteread’s work

1b.

Drawings

2.

Untitled (Earth Basket),2012. A newly commissioned piece for Writtle Green.

1c.

2b.

Whiteread, the Minimalists and the New British Sculptors

World Green, A topographical study.

1d.

2c.

Political House

Site

of Cross

3.

Archeological sources and findings.

3b.

Commonplace

objects

Collector’s foreword:

Rachel Whiteread has never been a Land Artist.

She now is.

Rachel Whiteread

British sculptor and draughtsman b. 1963

Brighton Polytechnic (Painting), Brighton, 1982-85 Slade School of Fine Art (Sculpture), London, 1985-87

“Mummifying the sense of silence in a room, mummifying the air” (Whiteread, 2005)
“Mummifying the sense of silence in a
room, mummifying the air” (Whiteread, 2005)

Rachel Whiteread, Ghost, 1990 [Fig.4] Installed at National Gallery of Art (NY), 2004

[Fig.4] Installed at National Gallery of Art (NY), 2004 Rachel Whiteread, (Untitled) Torso, 1992 [Fig.5] Dental

Rachel Whiteread, (Untitled) Torso, 1992 [Fig.5] Dental plaster

‘Junk shops and salvage yards

[are]

her sketchbooks.’

(Whitread, 2001, quoted in Pesenti, 2010)

Drawing runs simultaneously, distinctly and privately alongside the large, unwieldy sculptural work in Whiteread’s practice. ‘Drawings are a place where [she] worries, and they are also where she plays.

Their space is quiet.’ (Pesenti, 2010)

Whiteread often uses graph paper, tipp-ex and ink, while collage of old photographs and cut paper is used in her later works. The edge of the paper and sculptural puckering caused by wet varnish is valued.

Rachel Whiteread Untitled (Bath IV), 1996 [Fig.6] Ink, correction fluid, and varnish on graph paper 59.5 x 84 cm

Carl Andre

American Minimalist b. 1935

Agnes Martin

American abstract painter 1912-2004

b. 1935 Agnes Martin American abstract painter 1912-2004 Carl Andre, Drawing for ‘The perfect painting’ 1967

Carl Andre, Drawing for ‘The perfect painting’

1967 [Fig.7]

Pencil on paper 39 x 44.6 cm

“None of their [Minimalist’s] emotions were registered in their works of art.”

(Martin, 2002, quoted in Pesenti, 2010)

works of art.” (Martin, 2002, quoted in Pesenti, 2010) Agnes Martin, Wood 1 , 1963 [Fig.8]

Agnes Martin, Wood 1, 1963 [Fig.8] Watercolour and graphite on paper 38.1 x 39.37 cm

experience “

art which is wordless and silent.” (Martin,

1997, quoted in Kettle’s Yard, 2010)

can be expressed for me in

Eva Hesse

German-American sculptor and painter associated with Minimalism 1936-1970

sculptor and painter associated with Minimalism 1936-1970 Eva Hesse, Sans II 1968 [Fig.9] Installed at Yale

Eva Hesse, Sans II 1968 [Fig.9] Installed at Yale University Art Gallery, 1992

Alison Wilding

New British Sculptor b. 1945

Gallery, 1992 Alison Wilding New British Sculptor b. 1945 Alison Wilding, Rising , 2001 [Fig.10] acrylic

Alison Wilding, Rising, 2001 [Fig.10] acrylic 16.5 x 16 x 13 cm

House

Turner Prize Winner November 1993 Demolished January 1994

[Fig. 11]

‘Grove Road was on a green corridor with a view to Canary Wharf, one of Thathcher’s troubled economic babies, originally envisaged as an urban

utopia.’(Whiteread quoted in Mullins, 2004)

[Fig. 12]
[Fig. 12]
Discover the properties of rammed earth Push the material Excavation, Absence, Extrusion. [Fig.13]

Discover the properties of

rammed earth

Push the material

Excavation, Absence, Extrusion.

[Fig.13]

[Fig.14]
[Fig.14]
[Fig.15]
[Fig.15]

The maund (hand basket) sits in the crook of your arm, rest- ing on the hip.Here that intimate interaction is disabled, the space filled with the degrading matter of past mauns.

A greater volume of soil is needed to create the sculpture than will be displace by the final block, leaving a void on the green.

Writtle Green,

bounded. Tied to an image of perfection.

The light switch is back to front- I am the wall.

I made the viewer the wall.” (Whiteread, 2005)

Rachel Whiteread The World-Green, 2006 [Fig.16] Gouache and collage on paper 38.1 x28.2 cm

[Fig.17]
[Fig.17]
[Fig.18]
[Fig.18]
[Fig.19] Hidden by trees
[Fig.19] Hidden by trees
[Fig.20] Hidden in the green
[Fig.20] Hidden in the green
[Fig.21] Hidden in the view
[Fig.21] Hidden in the view

Cross (site of)

Archeologists excavate for lost objects but on Writtle green there is a lost memory; one which should have been protected. This raises a question of what else has been lost to the earth,

the quiet moments with unimportant objects.

1870s map of Writtle Green 1960s map detail showing the site of the cross and
1870s map of
Writtle Green
1960s map
detail showing
the site of the
cross and loss
of tree besides
[Fig.22]

Excavations at Test Pit 7

[Fig.23]
[Fig.23]

discovered an absence.

[Fig.24]
[Fig.24]

The bases of Roman wells discovered in Essex reflect the square test pit. The wood survives to tell a story unseen by the people of the time.

We only got down to layer 7 which revealed an interesting curved shape made up of a light coloured, calcarious sandy clay loam compared with the darker loam soil either side. This could have something to do with the base of the cross that is thought to have been in the vicinity up to 100 years

ago (Heritage Writtle, 2009).

cross that is thought to have been in the vicinity up to 100 years ago (Heritage

[Fig.25]

cross that is thought to have been in the vicinity up to 100 years ago (Heritage

[Fig.26]

Excavations at King John’s Hunting Lodge, Writtle, Essex, 1955-57 by P.A. Rahtz, 1969

A Visual Essay by Rachel Whiteread, 2010
A Visual Essay by Rachel Whiteread, 2010

[Fig.27]

It rarely occurs to people that most of the present day’s significant archaeological artifacts were, in their own day, garbage. The majority of important archaeological sites giving us clues to former civilizations were burial grounds for discarded bodies or ancient trash dumps. (Goldwyn, 2011)

The pseudo-scientific layout of Whiteread’s visual essay details the overlooked. In comparison, the iron objects left behind at the Hunting lodge are lovingly brushed from the ground, studied and drawn.

Discoveries

Discoveries Objects unearthed in Writtle excavation [Fig.28]

Objects unearthed in Writtle excavation

[Fig.28]

when
when

opening it after so long, it

contained inside it the smell of her family home. (Wood, 2005)

Andrew Dunkley and Marcus Leith The Sellotape box 2005 [Fig.29] photograph of found object

(Steer, 1969) Rebecca Smith Brown Basket, 2012 [Fig.30] Acrylic on old photograph copy
(Steer, 1969)
(Steer, 1969)

Rebecca Smith Brown Basket, 2012 [Fig.30] Acrylic on old photograph copy

(Steer, 1969) Rebecca Smith Yellow Basket, 2012 [Fig.31] Acrylic on old photograph copy
(Steer, 1969) Rebecca Smith Yellow Basket, 2012 [Fig.31] Acrylic on old photograph copy

(Steer, 1969)

Rebecca Smith Yellow Basket, 2012 [Fig.31] Acrylic on old photograph copy

(Steer, 1969) Rebecca Smith Blue Basket, 2012 [Fig.32] Acrylic on old photograph copy
(Steer, 1969)
(Steer, 1969)

Rebecca Smith Blue Basket, 2012 [Fig.32] Acrylic on old photograph copy

References

Burn, G. and Wood, C. (2005) Rachel Whiteread Embankment, The Unilever Series. London: Tate publishing.

Department of Archaeology, University of Cambridge (2009). Pottery Report and Test pit location map. Access Cambridge Archaeology, Writtle, Essex [www document]. http://www.arch. cam.ac.uk/aca/writtle.html (Accessed 23 January

2012).

Frith,F. Thompson, R. (2004) Francis Frith’s Essex Second Selection (Photographic Memories). England: Frith.

Greenwood, P. Perring, D. and Rowsome, P.(2006) From Ice Age to Essex. London: Museum of London Archaeology Service

Heritage Writtle, (2009) News from the field HEFA in Writtle- The “Diggin” project [www. document] http://heritage-writtle.co.uk/news. aspx (Accessed 24 January 2012)

Kettle’s Yard, (2010) Agnes Martin. [www. document] www.kettlesyard.co.uk/exhibitions/ agnes_martin.html (Accessed 24 January 2012)

Marden, P. and Trevor, B. (1990) The Writtle we’ve loved. Chelmsford: the authors

Mullins, C. (2004) Rachel Whiteread. London:

Tate publishing.

Pesenti, A. (2010) Rachel Whiteread Drawings. Los Angeles: Hammer Museum and DelMonico Books, Prestel Publishing.

Rahtz, P.A. (1969) Excavations at King John’s Hunting Lodge, Writtle, Essex, 1955-57. London:

Society for Medieval Archaeology, University College.

Steer, F.W. (1969) Farm and cottage inventories of mid-Essex 1635-1749 (2nd edition). Chelms- ford: Philimore.

theEYE.(2005) Rachel Whiteread, Illuminations Media. DVD.

The Weltkunst Collection. Cork, R. Curtis, P. Marshall, C. (1997) Breaking the Mould, British Art of the 1980s and 1990s. London: Lund Hum- phries Publishers Ltd.

Townsend, C. (ed.) (2004) The art of Rachel Whiteread. London: Thames and Hudson.

Wymer, N. (1949) Wheatsheaf and willow: the Eastern shires. Lutterworth.

List of Illustrations

Fig. 1. Smith, R. (2012) Rachel Whiteread’s vitrine. [tipp-ex and ink on brown envelope] reference Whiteread, R. (1985) Invitation. [ink on card] Private Collection.

Fig. 2. Whiteread, R. (1998) Trafalgar Square Project. [collage] Source: (Pesenti, 2010), Credits: Prudence Cumings Associates Ltd.

Fig. 3. Smith, R. (2012) Shelf. [photograph]

Fig. 4. Whiteread, R. (1990) Ghost. [Sculpture} Source: http://www.nga.gov/press/2004/releases/ fall/whiteread.shtm. [www. document] Photography credit: Gagosian Gallery, New York.

Fig. 5. Whiteread, R. (1992) Untitled (Torso). [Sculture] Source: http://www.museomadre.it/ opere.cfm?id=604. [www. document]

Fig. 6. Whiteread, R. (1996) Untitled (Bath IV) [drawing] Source: (Pesenti, 2010), Credits: Pru- dence Cumings Associates Ltd.

Fig. 7. Andre, C. (1967) Drawing for ‘The perfect painting’.[drawings] Source: http://www.tate.org.

uk/servlet/ViewWork?cgroupid=999999961&workid=51

1&searchid=11281. [www. document] Credit: VAGA, New York and DACS, London 2002

Fig. 8. Martin, A. (1963) Wood 1. [drawing] Source: http://peterblumgallery.com/artists/ agnes-martin [www.document]

Fig. 9. Hesse, E. (1968) Sans II.[Installation] Source: http://www.tate.org.uk/research/tateresearch/ tatepapers/07autumn/barger.htm. [www. document] Cred- it: Hauser & Wirth Zürich London

Fig. 10. Wilding, A. (2001) Rising. [Sculture] Source: http://www.sculpture.org.uk/AlisonWilding/ maquette/Rising/ [www. document] Credit: Cass Sculp- ture foundation.

Fig. 11. Whiteread, R. (1993) House. [Sculpture] Source: (Mullins, 2004) Credit: Anthony d’Offay, Lon- don.

Fig. 12. Whiteread, R. (1993) House. [drawing] Source: (Mullins, 2004) Credit: Anthony d’Offay, Lon- don.

Fig. 13. Smith, R. (2012) Earthbasket [model sculp- ture]

Fig. 14. Smith, R. (2012) Drawing for earthbasket [drawing]

Fig. 15. Smith, R. (2012) Drawing for earthbasket (II) [drawing]

Fig. 16. Whiteread, R. (2006) The World-Green [col- lage] Source: (Pesenti, 2010), Credits: Robert Wede- meyer.

Fig. 17. Smith, R. (2012) Green topography [earth model]

Fig. 18. Smith, R. (2012) Drawing for green [collage]

List of Illustrations (2)

Fig. 19. Smith, R. (2012) Hidden by trees [tipp- ex on photo] Photograph source: (Mardon, 1990)

Fig. 20. Smith, R. (2012) Hidden by green [tipp- ex on photo] Photograph source: (Mardon, 1990)

Fig. 21. Smith, R. (2012) Hidden by view [tipp-ex on photo] Photograph source: (Mardon, 1990)

Fig. 22. Ordance survey. (1870) Writtle green. Source: EDINA Historic Digimap http://edina. ac.uk/digimap/ [www. document] (accessed 12 January)

Fig. 23. Heritage Writtle. (2009) Diggin test pit. Source: http://heritage-writtle.co.uk/news. aspx

Fig. 24. Department of Archaeology, University of Cambridge (2009). Test pit location map. Source:

Access Cambridge Archaeology, Writtle, Essex [www document]. http://www.arch.cam.ac.uk/aca/writtle. html.

Fig. 25. Greenwood, P. (2006) Hunts Hill Farm Roman well. [Photograph] Source: Greenwood, P. Perring, D. and Rowsome, P.(2006) From Ice Age to Essex. London: Museum of London Archaeology Service Fig. 26. Greenwood, P. (2006) Moor Hall Farm Roman well. [Photograph] Source: Greenwood, P. Perring, D. and Rowsome, P.(2006) From Ice Age to Essex. London: Museum of London Archaeology Service

Fig. 27. Smith, R. (2012) Two books [Photograph] See references (Pesenti, 2010), (Rahtz, 1969)

Fig. 28. Smith, R. (2012) Discoveries [Photograph]

Fig. 29. Dunkley, A. and Leith, M. (2005) The Sellotape box [photograph] Source: (Burn, 2005)

Fig. 30. Smith, R. (2012) Yellow Basket. [acrylic on photo] Photograph source: (Greenwood, 2006)

Fig. 31. Smith, R. (2012) Brown Basket. [acrylic on photo] Photograph source: (Frith, 2004)

Fig. 32. Smith, R. (2012) Blue Basket. [acrylic on photo] Photograph source: (Frith, 2004)