• Michael Craig-Martin

    Whitechapel Gallery

    In Michael Craig-Martin’s work, although everything is laid out upon the surface, there is more here than meets the eye. In this, his first retrospective, which includes constructions, neon works, wall drawings, relief sculptures, and paintings, he succeeds in making the invisible visible. An Oak Tree, 1973, guarding the entry, is the only piece that clearly goes beyond appearance. It consists of a glass of water perched on a glass shelf some nine feet up a wall, together with a short text in which the artist says that he has turned the glass of water into an oak tree. The difference between

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  • Tom Phillips

    National Portrait Gallery

    Tom Phillips is a writer, scholar, composer, and artist. He first came to public notice with the publication of A Humament, 1980, a self-described “doctored Victorian novel.” The book is a fascinating and colorful meander through various styles of language and art. The work’s title plays on the title of an obscure book called A Human Document. Phillips tampers with the original book, including some passages, leaving out or rearranging others, so that the final version is a playful amalgam of words and patterns.

    An important facet of Phillips’ work is its serial aspect. Both within and among works,

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