Sex, war and ultraviolence: Stanley Kubrick from a radical new perspective


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(edition.cnn) Stanley Kubrick's greatest legacy might just be how many people he inspired.

Sex, war and ultraviolence: Stanley Kubrick from a radical new perspective

His films cannot help but elicit curiosity. The space for speculation, a hunt for meaning in the American auteur's films, perhaps explain why he is such a draw for creatives today.

Somerset House in London is happy to play host to the fruits of this process with "Daydreaming with Stanley Kubrick," which opened on July 6.

In the new exhibition, contributors -- including Doug Aitkin, Marc Quinn, Samantha Morton and Norbert Schoerner -- examine Kubrick's oeuvre through installations, paintings and video.

Fittingly, curator, artist and UNKLE musician James Lavelle likens the five years he spent bringing together his ensemble cast to making a film.

Artists pay tribute

Among the highlights are Schoerner's "Das Problem der Befahrung des Weltraums," a virtual reality jump into the spinning interior of Discovery One, the ship from "2001: A Space Odyssey;" and light artist Chris Levine's "Mr. Kubrick is Looking," a haunting, fleeting portrait of the director.

Kubrick's signature one-point perspective abounds, even in the exhibition layout: a host of rooms are tied together with a long corridor featuring that carpet from "The Shining," reimagined by Adam Broomberg and Oliver Chanarin.

Political collage artist Peter Kennard is at large with a dizzying anti-war installation drawing the line between "Dr. Strangelove" and the nuclear states that remain today.

Toby Dye, meanwhile, calls on actors Joana Lumley and Aidan Gillen in a walled, looping video room, "The Corridor," recasting them as characters from four Kubrick films, including his opulent curtain-closer "Eyes Wide Shut."

It's an intense, immersive experience scored by everyone from Britpop frontman Jarvis Cocker to Detroit techno producer Carl Craig. But at the entrance, before the throbs and pulses, is a poignant reminder that above all the bravura, Kubrick was, to some, simply a devoted family man.

Christiane Kubrick, his widow and wife of 40 years, has contributed "Remembering Stanley," a portrait from 1999, painting the director during a quiet moment in their garden in rural Hertfordshire.

Her endorsement of "Daydreaming" has been key to Lavelle and his project.

"Kubrick is my creative hero," says Lavelle. "It's been humbling to have Christiane's blessing."
"Daydreaming with Stanley Kubrick," in partnership with Canon, runs at Somerset House in London until August 24, 2016.

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