A high pressure turbine disc from a Concorde engine, c. 1970
Steel, 250 kg approx.
67 × 12 cm. (26 ⅜ × 4 ¾ in.)
Revolution & Renewal
Agnews is participating in London Art Week's theme of Revolution and Renewal with an exhibition around the subject, showing works that demonstrate the various ways in which art and objects document and contribute to many of the modern world's "revolutions", be they social, technological, philosophical or aesthetic, which make us who we are today. Works include a 1955 painting by Belgian artist Pol Mara, Industrial Forms, which challenges the usual approach to the aesthetics of modernity and industry and asks viewers to re-appraise their idea of the world around them.
Lotte Laserstein's remarkable and challenging self-portrait of circa 1934 perfectly exemplifies the sexual revolution epitomised by the "New Woman" ("Neue Frau") in Germany's Weimar Republic of the 1920s and '30s, in which gender identity, equality, cultural, social, and political progress were explored through art and popular culture.
The exhibition also explores the artistic reaction to the military and industrial machine civilisation through examples of the aeropittura movement, Italian Futurism's final incarnation; as well as a high pressure turbine disc from a 1970's Concorde engine. Although not a work of art in the traditional sense, as well as being a part of a technologically advanced aeroplane that represented a tremendous breakthrough in aviation history, bringing humankind one step closer to its dream of flying like a bird, it is an object of great beauty and presented as it is as beautiful as any modern sculpture: what Man Ray would have described as an objet trouvé. It is a perfect example of art and science melding into one.