Let the games begin! To coincide with the Olympics commandeering the city of London this summer, cueB Gallery presents No White Elephants; an eye-catching series of paintings which addresses less the games themselves, but the vast space in which this colossal event will be taking place. The architecture and designs of the new Olympic buildings, which by many are considered pieces of art in their own right, are presented in vibrant blocks of colour which,
McIntyre tells us, are inspired by posters of the 1920‘s. This gives an interesting insight to the changes that are taking place at the former landfill site in East London (situated in one of the most deprived boroughs in the U.K) that is housing the Olympics this year.
The title No White Elephants refers to what will happen to the space once the Olympics has ended. The notion that has been nagging the architects is the one of legacy vision. How will the billions invested in the site be profitable in the future once the “house warming party” is over? The Olympic Park Legacy Company says, “There will be no white elephants” at the site of the Games. The implication is that the expensive regeneration will not turn the site into a ghost town of giant carcasses. The challenge is great, as previous experience has proven the enterprise to be difficult what with Olympic sites in both Athens and Beijing lying dormant since their Olympic debut. What will be the outcome in London?
Architecture is an important theme in much of McIntyre’s work as she states that she likes to “observe the grammar behind the arrangements of urban constructions”, what does our urban landscape say about our life and experiences as a society? McIntyre states through her work that what is now evident within London’s Olympic site is a drive typical of the late 2000 recession, that is to ensure sustainability, in order to face any on-coming economical and social challenge. These paintings speak to us not only on a striking, visual level, but through their engagement with subjects that are imbedded within today’s society and an event which is a benchmark for 2012.