London: Martin Creed ‘Work Nos. 1100, 1343, 1347′ at Gallery Restaurant, Sketch

April 7th, 2012


Sketch Restaurant, London. All photos on site for Art Observed by Ryann Donnelly.

In celebration of their 10th anniversary, London’s Sketch restaurant in Mayfair unveiled a new installation from Turner prize winning British multi-media artist Martin Creed on March 1st, 2012. Creed’s installation is comprised of three main components: opulent marble tiling, large-scale murals, and an assemblage of mix-matched furnishings and tableware, each piece as functional as it is aesthetically compelling and intricate.


Martin Creed, Sketch Installation View (2012)


Martin Creed, Sketch Installation View (2012)

Work No. 1347  features 96 types of marble arranged in a zigzag pattern across the floor, geometric and somewhat Surrealist, the pallette of earth and jem tones could perhaps be likened to a chic Missoni textile. This custom creation serves as the foundation for Creed’s esoteric environment of otherwise colloquial bits and pieces.


Martin Creed, Sketch Installation View (2012)

Work No. 1100 includes the four murals adorning the interior with emblematic crosses and primary color patterns working in a Lichtenstein vernacular. One wall references a common mode found in other Creed paintings, overlapping colorful strokes in a lattice pattern. The myriad of colors are offset by large patches of white that seem laid in deliberate relief of the amplified palette. The effect is a feeling of simple but coded communication with pop familiarity. Despite the busy-ness of the room, the patterns feel infinitely open, and provide contrast to the small scale ornaments and props also used in the work.


Martin Creed at Sketch (2012)

The third element of the installation is Work No. 1343, in which Creed has assembled assorted table settings and furniture throughout the Gallery restaurant. From above, each setting becomes its own unique tableau. Vintage flatware and cutlery ranges from subtly embellished depression-era glass to kitsch-like arm chairs from the 1960s and ’70s. The antiques compliment the contemporary design of their environment with an unexpected contrast. Lighting also plays a crucial role as floor and desk lamps are paired, at times with candlelight, creating an ambiance of both artificial and natural light to illuminate Creed’s experiential work.


Martin Creed, Work No. 1343 (2012)


Desserts at Sketch Restaurant, London (2012)


Martin Creed at Sketch, London (2012)

The work will be part of an ongoing series of installations, though an end-date for the current piece has not been announced by Sketch, nor a proceeding artist.

—R. Donnelly

Related Links: 

Exhibition Site [Sketch]
Artist Site [Martin Creed]
The Art of Dining [Huffington Post]
Martin Creed revamps the Gallery restaurant at Sketch, London [Wallpaper]