Her serious, atmospheric works - mostly films, but also drawings and photographs - are both sparse and rich. Dean is known for her (extremely) long shots; somnolent to some, epiphanic to others. We'll look for an hour at coastline, the bulk of a lighthouse, a hopping magpie, an old man descending the stairs. The sea is a particular obsession - especially in her early work.
Nominated for the Turner Prize in '98 and commissioned for the Turbine Hall in 2011, her work has lost none of its muddy poetry over the years. As Simon Schama put it, her films are "heightened, quickened, poetically illuminated in more than the purely kinetic sense, and charged with the intense beauty that is conditional on the presentiment of loss."
Tacita Dean makes resoundingly English art, but she's done something rather different for her latest trick. She relocated to LA, where she became obsessed with clouds, and made a series of lithographs (a printing process using stone and oil) to depict them, intermingled with other works made with charcoal, spray chalk, white charcoal pencil and blackboards. Individually joyous, these pictures combine to create an utter daydream of an exhibition.
If you're a British artist in LA, who else do you look for but California Stalwart David Hockney. Dean filmed him him amid his very own clouds of smoke, to create a dynamic portrait of one of our most treasured artists.
‘He's thinking about his paintings,’ says Dean. "He paints, sits down, has a cigarette and figures out what to do next.’
|What||Tacita Dean, Frith Street Gallery|
|Where||Frith Street Gallery, 17-18 Golden Square, London, W1F 9JJ | MAP|
|Nearest tube||Piccadilly Circus (underground)|
16 Sep 16 – 04 Nov 16, Gallery Hours: Tuesday - Friday 10am-6pm; Saturday 11am-5pm, and by appointment
|Website||Click here for more information|