Published  09/05/2013
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Wallace Collection Venture

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The Tate Modern effect is spreading: the Wallace Collection no less, has ventured into contemporary art, albeit in a self-reflective mode. ‘Sanctuary’, an exhibition of nine works by the American photographer Karen Knorr, is a triumph of self-examination. Knorr explores the nature and conflicting imperatives of the Wallace and its contents in her works, in an ironic yet wholly contemporary manner. Arguably, both subversive and critical of High Art, the photographs offer a cinematic perspective; surreal, yet painterly, whereby animals and birds wander the galleries, creatures seemingly related to those in the paintings of Fragonard or Boucher, for example. It seems difficult, after such an experience, to review Fragonard, or indeed Boucher, in the same way ever again.

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