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Home on the range: an on-screen shot of life at home by Pope and Guthrie


Glasgow: Street Level Gallery until Sun 27 Jul & Homespun/

For most people over 25, hearing John Denver crooning ‘Take Me Home Country Road’ is enough to induce a fit of nostalgia bordering on psychotic regression. Within seconds, heads start to wobble and eyes well up. We may not like it, but we're all missing John and West Virginia mighty badly, though the idea of home is like that - for good or bad, it leaves an indelible mark.

Plugging into these emotional depths is Homespun, the latest video and Internet project from Nina Pope and Karen Guthrie, creators of last year's Internet piece Hypertext Journal. That saw the duo on a Thelma and Louise-like tour of Scotland in a Maestro, retracing Boswell and Johnson's Highland travels.

For Homespun, the artists have returned to their family homes - Pope to Cambridge and Guthrie to Largs - to spend a week videoing interiors and landscapes which they see as personally influential. The results can be seen daily in two galleries - Glasgow's Street Level and the Cambridge Darkroom - or on the Web.

'In Homespun, we are interested in places where

temporal, geographical and emotional spaces overlap,‘ says Guthrie. 'In a broad sense, the piece is about the experiences which have propelled us to work together. More specifically, Homespun is about the feeling of trying to return to the past but not documenting what is happening there now. It's not about videoing a fight at the kitchen table.’

Pope and Guthrie plan to exchange their video tapes through the post and produce a split-screen image which combines pictures from both homes. For Guthrie, this is a ’straightforward cinematic reference', conveying a sense of their parallel lives.

‘We are using automated tripod heads with the camera to control the speed, direction and angle of each pan,’ explains Guthrie. 'We were uncomfortable with the voyeurism associated with domestic video and filming this way. The work is more reverential and abstract. We did not want to spy on our parents, so the human element has been kept to a minimum.

She continues: 'I feel ambivalent about home. For the last few years, my family has been very unstable, but conceptually my parents still represent something that was always stable in the past. These raw nerves make the work exciting but I don't know how much to reveal. Where do you draw the line?’ (Paul Welsh)

European Couples, and Others

Glasgow: Transmission until Sat 2 Aug ****

Yes it's true. European Couples, and Others, a show of work from Transmissron's members and guests, has everything. There's a limousine outside (well, on opening night anyway) and Wine, mu5ic and many bright young artists inside.

The predominant mood of the show is a slightly Jaded, melancholic View of the world - but dished up wrth irony and satire. There are plenty of wry smiles, a couple of belly laughs and some thoughtful head-SCratching in between.

Take Alan Dimmick‘s Henry Eats Shit, which shows a friendly-looking gorilla eating his dessert, while John Beagle and Graham Ramsey’s Pure Mince, is a polemical comment on our tendency to compromise standards Jessrca and Katy Rothschild have recorded a tribute to the Spice Girls, while Sarah Felton in Every Waiting Moment has drawn an atmospheric sketch.

Forgetting the cliches and recycled ideas, this show is generally an intelligent offering. In time, some contributors will turn their talents into something substantial and lasting, (Paul Welsh)

Present Tense Edinburgh: Andrew Grant Gallery, Edinburgh College of Art, untilThu 31 Jul ***

Detail from untitled work by Tamzin Adams

Out Of The Blue

Faisal Abdu’Allah is a barber who

subverSion The tiles, which are

Glasgow: Gallery Of Modern Art until Sun 21 Sep *tt #1

Scientists of Sound: Faisal Abdu'Allah‘s Silent Witness

on "IE LIST zs Jul—7 Aug 1997

works in north London. He is also an artist who reverted to Islam a few years ago. His installation Silent Witness comprises three plinths. On each rests a triangular, 30 glass-piece screenprinted with images of male heads: faces and the backs of heads. We are told that these men are 'rap iconoclasts who have re-embraced Islam.’ Meticulously constructed, the work resonates With presence. The 'scientists of sound' have become silent beacons.

Out Of The Blue, a show of work by three artists, forms part of Glasgow Museums’ festival Salaam, A Celebration Of Art And Culture In The Muslim World. It's an interesting and timely riposte to the 'Christian' West's simplistic and frequently scaremongering Views on Islam.

Zineb Sedira was born in Paris to Algerian parents. In Ouatre Generations De Femmes, she has covered the walls of the gallery With traditional Islamic geometric patterned tiles. Yet, there is evrdence of

traditionally made by men, are created here through computer-generated design, and contain the faces of women in miniature. This in itself goes against convention Islamic art and decoration has long excluded the human form in its iconographic repertOire.

On other tiles there is text, One line runs 'I am lost between two imposed identities and opposite cultures? Calligraphy has been ousted and replaced by words on identity confu5ion. And when enclosed Within this uniforme tiled space, there is a real sense of not so much claustrophobia, but the weight of these dilemmas One world and its order appears to be seamlessly grafted on to another.

Sher Raiah’s work offers gentle re5pite to these dilemmas Comprising a stream and mini-fountain installation wrth attendant greenery, there is a park bench on which to Sit You can even throw a com into the water and make a Wish. (Susanna Beaumont)

Timed to comode with this year’s Scotland/Africa 97 festival, this exhibitiOn brings together work by twenty photographers from Durban and Johannesburg i". South Africa. As the shows title suggests, the end of apartheid has brought South Africa more 'in to date', (~t-naliling many photographers to turn from political documentation to other StlblCClS Val Adams'On's prize-\.\'ii‘.r‘.iiig black

and white portraits of dancers present I a claSSically-inspired approach to photography reiiizniscent of Robert l/lapplethorpe A graduate of Edinburgh’s Napier Uiiiteisity, Adarnson has lived in Durban suite 1984

At the other end «if the st the is Taiiisyn Adam's (Ollf‘t tits-n of old luggage tickets and lire-An t‘ll'.{’i(‘l.‘t‘\, superimposed with blue cyanotypt- images Elsewhere, there are landscapes, photographs at rural rite :n deepest Natal and abstract xxo'k

Best of all is the work of Jerry l/lt hunu and Biggs l/lbliele Charging 70p per shot, they worked as street photographers in Durban Their informal 35min toiour snaps have the immediacy of real life «Mart Lambert)