10 September - 14 November 2004
British artist Paul Noble has received widespread international recognition for his monumental eight-year project – the meticulous depiction of a fictional city called Nobson Newtown. Noble is a master draughtsman, whose wall-sized drawings offer aerial perspectives over a fantastical cityscape that echoes the visionary ethos of projects such as the Garden City Movement. The exhibition in the Upper Galleries is the most extensive presentation of Paul Noble’s work to be held in Britain to date.
Taking us from the Shopping Mall to Ye Olde Ruin via the town centre, what appears as a bird’s eye view of urban devastation or ravaged forestry actually conceals quotations from Omar Khayyam’s Rubaiyat and T. S. Eliot’s The Wasteland. Noble also shows an enormous egg-shaped sculpture (described as ‘a cross between a Fabergé egg and a Grecian urn’), a black and white film and an embroidered modesty screen. These works revolve around themes of birth, language, religion and ruin. Whether drawing from medieval illuminations, ancient Chinese scrolls or contemporary artists like Öyvind Fahlström and Robert Smithson, Noble’s project embodies a fascinating blend of utopian fantasy, social policies and historical perspectives. Paul Noble has been jointly organised with the migros museum für gegenwartskunst, Zurich.
With thanks to Maureen Paley Interim Art, London and Gorney Bravin + Lee Gallery, New York.