I The City at Edinburgh District Council has been awarded the Scottish Arts Council's Documentary Photography Commission fora project to examine the ‘cultural schizophrenia‘ of the Italian community in Scotland. Owen Logan (29) . who is half Italian. will carry out the project concentrating, not on the ‘poor family makes good‘ aspect of Italian immigration but on their present lives and psyches. no less. The end result will be a series of ‘intense and intimate portraits of individuals‘. The project follows hot on the heels of the National Library‘s Italo-Scozzesi exhibition and must be leavingthe Italian community feeling scrutinised but flattered. I Stills, Street Level and Summerlee Heritage Trust are offering four commissions worth £2,500 towards the production of new work for a major exhibition on the theme of The River. or Inland Waterway. The show will be launched simultaneously at Stills and Street Level, moving on to Summerlee and other UK galleries. The closing date for entries is 1 April. For further details contact Martha McCulloch or Catriona Grant at Street Level. ()41 552 2151.

I Entries are also invited for the next Inverclyde Biennial Art Competition for works in 2D and 3D.

Eligible artists, over 18 and resident in Scotland. should submit slides of their work paintings. drawings. prints. constructions and sculpture to the McLean Museum and Art Gallery, Greenock. by 28 Feb. For an application form. contact Valerie Boa

on 0475 23741.


I Matisse, Picasso, Miro- As I Knew Them Rosamond Bernier (Sinclair Stevenson. £30) Essentially this is an anecdotal account of the three artists Bernier came to know during the course of her editorship of the Parisian art magazine. L'()eil. Beautifully illustrated. it is a pleasant invitation to dabble in the lives ofthree ofthe century‘s most influential men. Beyond that the book is disappointing: there is little discussion of the artists‘ thought, or output or even oftheir- explosive - personalities.

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Personal column

An exhibition of new works at Glasgow’s Transmission Gallery has young artists probing the ritual, intimate and murky secrets of people’s private lives. Beatrice Colin professes herself shaken, but not deterred.

It’s an acquired taste, ‘diaristic‘, art. Faced with a/wall of hair, some huge cartoons and various hanging objects in corners, I wondered whether to bother acquiring it. ‘You need to be acquainted with the fetishistic‘. said the gallery assistant, sympathet - ically.

In Here, explores the private, the confessional and the perverse. Five artists present brand new works, five very different approaches and a show in which the only thing the works have in common is that they were reached by the same process. Puzzled? ‘That’s part of it’, quipped the assistant.

Rory Donaldson’s montages, made up of banks of photographic prints on to which he has drawn, feature parts of the body, such as nipples and hair. ‘These works do not pretend to have an answer but are a discourse about the complex nature ofseeing and knowing.‘ claims Donaldson. Like some sort of manic peep-show, the pictures have a voyeuristic quality which is

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Rory Donaldson's Objects of Desire 3, an example of ‘diaristic art‘

strangely enthralling. Likewise Leila Galloway‘s five-foot waterfall of wire hair. entitled Lair, plants a giant question mark over the issue of femininity and Brigid Teehan‘s installations are a hanging. dangling and cracked testimony to the frailty of human existence.

Less easy to decipher are Rachel Mimiec‘s red semi-circular mats which lie at the base of the four pillars in the gallery and David Shrigley‘s huge cartoons which mix the crude and the banal. like some sort ofstrange graffiti.

In Here. is the first halfoftwo shows: the second, Outta Here

features a couple of artists who will make installations in the gallery and all over the city. using posters and bollards. Rather than a journey into the heart ofdarkness, it will be a journey into the outside world. using mainly functional objects.

In conclusion? In Here. is self-indulgence on a gallery-sized scale, but this peek into the personal is certainly gratifying. Both diarists and initiates should find plenty here to muse on.

In Here is at the Transmission Gallery, Glasgow until Sat 8 Feb. Outta Here starts I 8 Feb.

:— Graphic Images

The 1980s really put illustrators on the map: breakthroughs in colour

reproduction meant that suddenly even

the most complex, the most subtle illustrations could be taithtully stamped on everything trom annual reports to calling cards. An exhibition at contemporary illustration at the National Library of Scotland explains some at the toil - and guile -that goes into the ‘tinal product’.

These days, we are bombarded by so many cleverly cratted images that there is hardly time to ponder or question, but this is a chance to do both. Alongside a tidy but tormidable array of brushes, paint tubes, pencils, rubbers and coloured paper, the work at ten Scottish illustrators is dissected into component parts.

Beneath the phrase ‘Specially Brewed For Head-Runters' and atop a menacing Amazonian backdrop, Alan

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Title Sequence trom the BBC series The Beechgrove Garden, byJacqueline Stevenson

R. Thomson has sketched and painted tour brimming pint glasses impaled on spears. On the side of a passing bus, it is a shrewd, even fetching plug for Scottish beer; but set beside the multitude ot preliminary drawings, some of which were only marrieo In the tinal stages of printing, the oeuvre looks a little more sinister. Questions arise: why has he chosen to include a shady Amazonian peaking out from behind a tree? Are these really images and words that belong together in a glib coHage? The power illustration has to dignity

the bland, or even the unpalatable, is shown in the work Robert Nelme did tor

the Royal Bank of Scotland’s I igh Interest Accounts brochure. Because photographs can be too harsh, too revealing, too true, advertisers turn to illustration lor a gentler, more seductive sell. Watercolours ot pounds, pence, even share certiticates, look positively alluring when overlaid on a watercolour map at Britain.

Whether you want to examine or just admire the work of our top illustrators, this small exhibition is worth a look. (Carl Honoré)

Contemporary Illustration is at the National Library at Scotland, until 15