Fred Scott: In Search of the Lost Artwork
2 — 22 December 2016
Betts Project is pleased to present ‘In Search of the Lost Artwork’, an exhibition of montages by British architectural theorist and lecturer Fred Scott.
‘Charlotte, lying on the couch, facing banked rows of architects, designers, blueprints, silhouette of plane.
A house is a machine for living. So is a body. Hers is supine, feet raised, knees extending out of skirt, hands cradled behind head, hair falling back. She co-designed the couch with Corb, but he excised her name from it.
Above her, Hitler Youths hold model planes against the sky; flying boats float in formation over Tokyo ruins; the Domino House abuts the Capitole, a grid between them. Regulating lines. Over a plan of the Marais, a Handley-Page bomber straddles her torso, a machine for killing. Lying on her back, she dreams Modernity.
Charlotte, half-naked up a mountain, raising her arms above the snowy valleys, couch floating in the air above them. To her left, Corb lurks behind thick glasses. His hand casts a long shadow that extends towards her.
Charlotte, redoubled, duplicated, outline scalpeled round, then collaged back above itself with a slight lag.
One of the Charlottes is greyscale but full-bodied; the other is faded, spectral.
Machines for forgetting.’
–Tom McCarthy 2016
Early in 2013 Fred Scott realised he had lost a triptych he made in 1997. ‘Dream of Flight’ was a montage using images from Le Corbusier’s pre-war publications, in which Scott blended Le Corbusier’s fascination for aircrafts and his associate Charlotte Perriand. For Fred Scott, Le Corbusier had a genius that has not been sufficiently recognized for gathering images to support his arguments, which is also almost an art in itself. The Radiant City in particular is an incredible collection of eclectic and surprising pictures, from similarly unexpected sources. Since then, Scott has been on a journey of memory to recreate his lost artwork. This exhibition shows Fred Scott’s pursuit and the “Dream of Flight” triptych becoming a silent “Ode” to Charlotte Perriand, alongside other paper montages Fred Scott has made this past decade.
Fred Scott was Visiting Professor of Interior Architecture at Rhode Island School of Design and the Royal College of Art. He was previously course leader for interior design at Kingston University, London. He wrote ‘On Altering Architecture’ in 2007, ed Routledge. The book explores the alternative to the sequence of demolition and new building that makes up the usual practice of architecture. Bringing together ideas of what might constitute a theory of interior, or interventional, design, Fred Scott fills a wide gap in the literature covering the evolution of interior space.