PREVIEW Twentieth Century Decay
Glasgow: Street Level, Tue 12 Jan—Sat 6 Feb.
Okay, so we've all spent the last month partying like it’s 1999. But now the hangover fog has cleared and New Year resolutions have been tossed out with the Christmas tree, it's suddenly not such a wonderful world after all. Fin de siecle fever, end-of-the-century ennui, zeitgeist zen — call it what you like, but there's something in the air and it's smelling decidedly unpleasant.
Artist Euan Sutherland calls this feeling ’20th century decay,’ a phrase that also acts as the title of his three-tiered exhibition at Street Level, in which Sutherland tackles what he sees as a 'decline' into the 21st century. Crime Scenes sees photo-collage bombardments of imagery from recent multi-nationals and various state apparatus and modes of oppression. Virus Protection is a temporary bookshop run by AK Distribution, and selling works from the counter-cultural canon of Noam Chomsky, Jean Baudrillard, James Kelman et al. suspended sentence is a time- specific installation, using slides and large-scale photographic images, which in part highlights the recent Western aggression in the Gulf.
’lt's looking at how contemporary society is completely messed up,’ says Sutherland. ’The exhibition shows the whole range of that, from the purely domestic to the national and international.’
work isn't viewed as didactic.
l Beagles and Ramsay Glasgow: independent Studio opening times by aopoiritrnent tel: 01.111 332
Skinny dipping: Beagles aiiii Ramsay enjoy beach exposure
’I’m certainly not trying to take the moral high ground with the work, but I suppose it is expressing my
up. ' (I ‘ " I” " '1- -, 4’5 ’
Age of decay: Euan Sutherland tackles twentieth century decomposition
- V (il'tm‘:
viewpoint on the debacle of the world around us. On
It’s mid-December when we’re talking, the day Bill another level though, it’s simply trying to make Clinton was supposed to be impeached and two days before Ramadan. As it turned out, it was also the day after a wave of American and British backed air-strikes targeted Iraq. Yet despite Sutherland’s clear political leanings, marked by conversational turns into environmental and ecological issues, he’s anxious the
something that’s visually interesting.’
Sutherland admits there's a real need for such counter information as Twentieth Century Decay. 'Some of the things I’m trying to deal with are so blatantly obvious as regards the hypocrisy of governments and continual military attacks throughout the world,’ he says, ’but you
can’t even read about them in so-called quality
Feeling hroody? You and Ally lvlc'Beal both, and, such :s the wonder of merchandising, the leggy briefs dancing baby can act as a surrogate bundle of Joy for us all Child—rearing may he the new rtci. n' new Independent Studio sl‘ould see any latent maternal instincts left a: the nursery where they l)t’"l-‘)ll(l
Itiner‘ant pranksters Beagles and Ramsay have taken the character of a monstrous infant from last year's a’li'r’.’ Pay, Won't Pay exhibition at Edinburgh's Collective Gallery, fleshed him out and (liven him his own snot-.1 Stand up Gary lhr- f‘vllSUlltft‘l‘sltl’iif Toddler, a 30in high (flilif who comes complete \.'.’|lli a fully operational flamethrower With which the dear wee mite terrorises the inhabitants of South London estates The show and tell Video features slices of Gary's dorrzestrc life With his' parents alongside excerpts from hrs adventures in the outside world.
’Our intention for the show is to construct for Gary a :liipboard coffin
roll, but a
exhibition at Glasgow's
broadsheets, which I find pretty frightening.’
‘.'/llltlll ‘.'.'lll(fl he Will he in state while his fiarrietl‘rrower fires a torch of llfllllllilillllﬂi larnd of like a Kuwait Oil well,’ say the artists Surrounding this Will be a pile of coloured A4 paper, riinr'e t'uel for Gary's fire/funeral pyre A series «:5 ‘logans hang on the walls as a (Bill‘s highlights of Gary's tragically short ute to a soundtrack entitled Get-Li iwtta Flamethrower' Ramsay see their collaborations as entertaining yet iraorally .trrrltrnunus in tone', regarding Gary the of a series of characters that express a volatile and decidedly tin-Pt” rnis.iiliriity Maybe that's why t’jary has lietome a star in Australia, where (nee/a Gotta Flamethrower has beer: played on national radio
Still, the siliilmkc‘ll landscapes of the land of 0/ have little to do With the Mel: of Beagles and Ramsay's work 'l'he \.'.'hole thing wi'l be pretty dark and say the pair, 'pr'edorniiiarrtly grey and black in tone,
hut wrth soots of tolour here and there ' lf‘lf'll ("rte-pert
Edinburgh: Cameo Cinema, until Sun 17 Jan ‘* w as
Holly Wright’s Reeling
Be rt the lecturer's tirade, a party political broadcast or today's headlines, we are all guilty of ignoring words in favour of pictures. Exploring the conflicting relationship between the two, the nine artists exhibiting in Loop observe what it means to be young at the end of the millennium.
Critical of an unforgiving society in which we are forced to conform or have an alternative label foisted upon us, they consider the shifting problem of identity, together with notions of guilt and innocence, alienation and loss.
Forcing us to consider what is real and what is imagined, Genevieve Wartes delves into the layers of experience which determine an individual’s multi-faceted and often contradictory persona. Similarly, through a variety of technical manipulations, Cat Bell uses the creative process to mirror the way in which we are shaped by an inflexible establishment.
Requiring either a fleeting glance or a more studied reading, the artists here pose many pertinent questions and dilemmas And though as a whole it gets bogged down in self-(ionscious cleverness, it evokes a bold sense of disenfranchisement (Claire Prentice)
Brophets and Pilgrims: Ruskin, Proust and Northern Gothic
Edinburgh: National Portrait Gallery until Sun 7 Mar it:-
When Marcel Proust managed to leave the drgestrves alone. and drag himself out of bed, he could oft be found demuring the work of Victorian art critic John Ruskin He spent six sleepless years translating the writings of the man he called the ’hrgh priest of beauty'
Poet, sCIentrst, philosopher and artist, it is Ruskrn's championing of Gothic .‘irc‘hitec'ture that pulls this exhibition together, With passing ll‘fOfCllC(.’S to the likes of William Morris, Thomas Carlyle and Oscar Wilde. Taking in Ruskrn's own dageurotypes of French cathedrals as well as portraits of key personalities and original manuscripts, it's fascinating more in historical than aesthetic. terms
An empire builder in the best possible sense, Ruskin's Idealism was summed up best by Proust in the key phrase, ‘the true paradises are the paradises that we have lost ' I'Nerl Cooper)