Reuben was a bit apprehensive at first as we had to climb a spiral staircase that was quite narrow and dark. He kind of put his foot down and refused to go up, so I was a mean mum and grabbed him and ran for it. In which he proceeded, when we got to the top to sulk in the corner and not look at me. Finally he came around and we were friends again.
"I can see animals.
I am going to draw 'em."
The first piece that we came across was the mesh installation (pictured above) I was super sketchy that he was going to fall into it, but was super careful, when I told him an over dramatic story about what would happen if it fell over. He loved the story and was super gentle when walking. We walked through and he pointed out that he could see a Grey elephant and a red bird in the mesh and wanted to draw them. He told me they were in cages because they had been bad, but they should be let out because its bad to stay in a cage forever.
Reuben was completely obsessed with this yellow installation. He kept laying down on the floor to show me how they looked and telling me that they looked different from down here. He counted the poles and drew the lines. He is really into drawing the art works we see, it kinder makes them interactive without getting touchy feely (which could end up being very expensive). Every time we go somewhere with installations that look "play friendly" but aren't, I gently tell him "be carefully of the art works, remember just look." I think taking him from such a young age, I mean new born, and never really stopping even when we did have melt downs & the steaming around and wanting to climb phase, that he now understands not to touch it. Plus he is just one of them really cautious kids that always holds your hand.
Rana Begum’s practice blurs the boundaries between sculpture, painting and architecture. It engages some of the movements of the past such as Minimalism and Constructivism with the same level of optimism and, at the same time, is fresh and relevant for today.
The way she has used the space and light to create different shapes when you look at each piece from different positions is amazing. Reuben was made up with this, walking back and forth "Look its a triangle" "Look its a square". I hadn't realised he had picked up the concept of shapes until this exhibition (bad mum moment) and we spent time counting the sides, from different positions each time coming up with a different outcome. This baffled him and his logic was "It's because of the power rangers."
"It's BECAUSE of
the POWER RANGERS!!!"
All in all this was a great one to take him to, not only because it was local but also because it really made his brain work. He wanted to take pictures and jump off the pieces to see if that changed how they looked. He tried to lay on the floor and draw them. It challenged him, and his logic is just so funny.
The Space Light Colour exhibition by Rana Begum finishes on the 1st of October & costs £7
You can find all the information here on the Sainbury Centre for Visual Arts website.
I also suggest a coffee in their coffee shop & a walk around the university grounds.