Westminster Reference Library
Wednesday, February 11, 2015
Saturday, February 28, 2015
35 St. Martin's Street London WC2H 7HP
Westminster Reference Library

Lives of the Artists updates the concept of artist biography for the internet age. Taking its title from the eponymous Renaissance work by Giorgio Vasari, artist Robert Good uses a well-known brand of internet search engine to conduct a trawl for artists, receiving daily notifications and painstakingly collating the results in an extensive and engaging display.

Set against the backdrop of Westminster Reference Library, a venerable public reference arts collection stocking over 40,000 volumes on art and using the display cabinets, tables and other paraphernalia of the library environment, Good’s work sees artists from across the spectrum both commemorated and celebrated as they jostle for space on the gallery walls.

Lives of the Artists replaces Vasari’s subjectivity, selectivity and authorial certainty with the equally problematic approach of inclusive egalitarianism and undifferentiated searching. The results are by turns surprising, intriguing, infuriating and refreshing.

Also exhibited is Phaidonidae, an entomological display cabinet of 1400 paper butterflies. With one butterfly per artist profiled in The Phaidon Encyclopedia of Art and Artists, Good creates a new family of lepidoptera and explores our need to classify and categorise the world around us.