It’s a little disappointing that in an entire gallery exhibition themed around the life and work of the late, great Stanley Kubrick there is not one cat to be found. Of the 60 or so artists who contributed to the exhibition, you would have thought at least one of them would have picked on Kubrick’s feline fascination and run with the theme. But no…
What we do get however are a stuffed snake, over-sized teddy bears sporting heart-shaped ‘Lolita’ sunglasses and Clockwork Orange codpieces, a giant concrete phallus, and Joanna Lumley dressed in full 18th Century costume, giant wig and all.
Lavelle and his co-curator James Putnam have turned a section of Somerset House into a series of eery corridors and claustrophobic rooms and then dug deep into their little black book of creative chums who have been tasked with filling those spaces with their own individual interpretations of Kubrick’s rather intimidating filmography.
Some have chosen to take a personal approach to the brief, like Samantha Morton’s short film which tells the semi-autobiographical story of a young girl running away to an empty cinema to watch 2001: A Space Odyssey with wide-eyed confusion and amazement.
Others have chosen to peak behind the scenes to Kubrick’s methods, tools and locations. Nancy Fouts has taken a vintage camera Kubrick was fond of and made it ‘breathe’ in a very disconcerting way. While Iain Forsyth and Jane Pollard have taken 114 analogue radio sets, each broadcasting an individual voice performing the same eery classical piece Kubrick used for both Clockwork Orangeand The Shining, and then crammed them all into a small, carefully crafted space. The overall effect is simultaneously beautiful and more than a little creepy.