If I Ruled The World
Glasgow: CCA at McLellan Galleries until Sat 20 May at at a-
Tony Bennett, the master crooner of corny songs, is clearly a man of influence. This show takes its title from one of his hit songs. And it is a title taken in irony; the eight artists in this show doubtless enjoy a good tease rather than harbour global take-over aspirations. But the shame is that the show falls short of announcing to Scotland, let alone the world, that these artists are heavyweights.
Ross Sinclair, Martin Boyce, Claire Barclay, Simon Starling, Clara Ursitti, Rose Thomas, Bryndis Snaejornsdottir and Roderick Buchanan are eight of Scotland's hottest artists yet the show is lukewarm. Curated by Sinclair and Snaejornsdottir, it gives the impression of being fairly hastily put together. Barclay and Ursitti have collaborated in More Sex, Death And Fly Fishing. The idea is interesting. Apparently women are record-breaking salmon catchers and this is partly explained by a pheromone link between women and salmon. There is an attraction between the species. On the wall hangs a photograph of Barclay and Ursitti dressed in matching tweedy outfits standing in a billiard room of some country house. They have
infiltrated a male preserve. A few yards away is a small wall-piece. It emits the dusky smell of pipe smoke. You
get the picture but it fails to excite.
Far more resolved is a series of photographs by Starling. Ever the investigator, Starling is fuelled by a curiosity for the seemingly everyday. In 1763, rhododendron ponticum was 'discovered' in southern Spain and introduced into cultivation. Over two centuries on, the ubitiquous rhododendron is often regarded as an unruly, outsized weed. Obviously moved by the plant’s change in status, Starling journeyed to Spain in a red Volvo estate with five rhododendrons. He wanted to show the plants their roots and the photographs chart the plants homeward bound journey.
Starling has also collaborated with Martin Boyce. They
Dundee: Dundee Contemporary Arts until Sat 29 May
A moment is a wonderfully indefinable chunk of tzme Enough time to fall in love, enough time to fall down the stairs. Ye: never enough time when the alarm is ringing and you Just don't
Marijke van Warmerdam's Skytypers is a reminder of lazy days
want to get out of bed. This exhibition Moment is dedicated to this tricky little capsule of time and stretches and squeezes it With some charm.
Beat Streuli's human wallpaper consists of bold colour photographs taken in Glasgow and at the T in the Park festival. They're close up, in-your-
Clara Ursitti and Claire Barclay pay tribute to Georgina Ballentine, who landed a
have created a model pavilion to house a small screen showing Jaques Tati’s film Playtime. It is a clever work that makes reference to ‘Tativille' the set constructed outside Paris for the film. What's more in the model are tiny cardboard cut-outs of Boyce and Starling. We are watching them watching Playtime. ; In a further room are large photographs of Sinclair. He had the words ‘Real Life' tattooed on to his back in 1994 and the photographs show him barebacked. The image of a real live flesh marked with these word is poignant but the surrounding construction of cardboard boxes weakens the impact. Glasgow has not been host to a show of work by these artists — all Glasgow residents — for sometime. Sadly it disappoints. (Susanna Beaumont)
64lb salmon in 1922, a British record
face images that show the tiny ticks and transactions that take place all the time, but are so brief we barely notice. A stray hair escapes from a pony tail. i Someone frowns. Pennies are counted i out in the palm of a hand. Everyday is filled with thousands of moments JUSl like this. l
Marijke van Warmerdam's film of five planes flying in formation has us gazing up at the skies. It reminds us of long summer days when there's nothing to think about, but to lazily watch vapour trails cross the skies. Most of us don't have days like these any more so sit back, watch and lose yourself. Meanwhile lgor and Svetlana Kopystiansky’s Video records rubbish drifting along the streets of New York. Less luxurious to view but equally time absorbing. :
But the star of the show is one long moment that lasts an utterly absorbing 30 minutes. Peter Fischli and Davrd Weiss' complicated masterwork, illustrates the Domino Effect as weird chemicals, household rubbish and invented contraptions turn a series of deliberate accidents into one long chain reaction. It only takes a moment to change the world. (Meira Jeffrey)
Mhairi Sutherland/Julie Read
Glasgow: Street Level until Sat 29 Apr ﬁnite
A Tornado pilot stands in a changing room. He is readying himself for a flight. Shoe-laces are tied. A protective suit is fastened. At times the accompanying music ceases, at other times the music is a touch menacing. At one point the pilot’s movements quicken and a sense of urgency is felt. This is a man clearly on a miSSion. A mission where? Who knows.
Mhairi Sutherland's video shows Chris Melville from RAF Leuchars in Fife preparing for a flight. Nearby are photographs of the approach road to Scotland's so-called ’secret bunker', formerly a nuclear command centre in Fife It's a forlorn and desolate-looking road, not so much a road to nowhere but a road that once lead to a HQ of destruction Yet unlike the work of LOUIse and Jane Wilson who similarly explore inaccessible spaces and places, Sutherland doesn’t quite give you a sense of trespassing on the forbidden. But a feeling of disclosure does come on peering into a glass cabinet. A small piece of text reveals that during the World War ll, managers of Granada cinemas were forewarned of air raids with the code words 'red roses’. Apparently the cinema audience were literally ’kept in the dark' They were not told of the imminent danger. Sutherland hits the nerve of secrecy
In the adjoming gallery, Julie Read explores both the body and the world beyond. She has photographed people’s navels, arguably the centrepomt of the human body, evrdence of life in the womb. Read's
g other work is inspired by travelling to
Bosnia On the wall are small glass triptychs. On one panel is text written in reverse Only on looking at the text's reflection is it readable, The words recount recent events in Bosnia Yet by looking in to the mirror, you catch your own reflection. It as if you are being implicated in the situation. Sometimes the text is unclear. The reading of the events is (lllflCUll. And that's the mint; the war in Bosnia was misread by the West. (Susanna Beaumont)
A room ready for a mission: Mhairi
Sutherland's interior shot of RAF Leuchars
13—27 Apr 2000 THE usr 79