Art Review: Uncommon Ground @ Flowers Gallery

Tabish Khan
By Tabish Khan Last edited 67 months ago
Art Review: Uncommon Ground @ Flowers Gallery
Robert Polidori, Amrut Nagar, Mumbai #1. Courtesy Flowers Gallery.
Robert Polidori, Amrut Nagar, Mumbai #1. Courtesy Flowers Gallery.
Alastair Levy, Proposals for Everyday Living (Air Vent). Courtesy Flowers Gallery.
Alastair Levy, Proposals for Everyday Living (Air Vent). Courtesy Flowers Gallery.
Andrea Galvani, Higgs Ocean #12. Courtesy of the artist and Meulensteen Gallery, New York.
Andrea Galvani, Higgs Ocean #12. Courtesy of the artist and Meulensteen Gallery, New York.
Raven Smith, Untitled (from the series The Worst Day of my life)
Raven Smith, Untitled (from the series The Worst Day of my life)
Nadav Kander, Metal Palm, Nanjing, Jiangsu. Courtesy Flowers Gallery.
Nadav Kander, Metal Palm, Nanjing, Jiangsu. Courtesy Flowers Gallery.
David Spero, Studio 3, Hallituskatu. © David Spero.
David Spero, Studio 3, Hallituskatu. © David Spero.

Flowers on Kingsland Road is one of the largest commercial gallery spaces in London and they've put it to great use with their latest exhibition. It incorporates over 100 pieces by 18 photographers, ranging from the well known through to emerging talents.

The unifying theme is human interaction with the environment ranging from the massive Mumbai shanty towns captured by Robert Polidori to Alastair Levy's playful attachment of multi-coloured post-it notes to an air vent. The variety of ways people may interact with their surroundings is limitless and this ensures the photographs are varied enough to keep the viewer interested despite the size of the exhibition.

There are many photographs on an huge scale including Nadav Kander's scenes from the river Yangtze where skyscrapers on the far bank loom ominously out of the smog. But the opposite is also present with playful pictures of people who've fallen into cardboard boxes by Raven Smith.

David Spero creates surreal interiors by placing brightly coloured balls all around a bathroom or a kitchen. Though they seem humorous at first, the stillness and sheer number of the balls take on a more menacing appearance reminiscent of a scene from Hitchcock's Birds.

There are also several abstract and surreal works including Chris Engman's construction materials supplanted into the middle of a desert that encourage the viewer to create their own story around them.

This exhibition does a great job of highlighting that photography as an art form has never been more diverse and engaging.

Uncommon Ground is on at Flowers, 82 Kingsland Road, E2 8DP until 1 September. Entrance is free.

Last Updated 21 July 2012