COLLABORATIVE INSTALLATION WAYS OF DOING THE NIGHT Tramway, Glasgow, until Sun 30 Sep 0000
This exhibition has a way of sticking in your mind; like a fairy tale or a half—remembered childhood trip to the carnival.
Michelle Naismith's work in particular has a witch-like elegance about it; those little box trees made of clipped black wool in pots of black eyed beans. they are hers. The tawny owl. wearing a white ruff and casting his disparaging orange glass eyes over the proceedings — that too is Naismith‘s. Her video piece My Black Sun shows a fox in bed. wearing an eye mask and battling against morbid thoughts.
Naismith‘s collaborator. Mick Peter. shows work infused with deadpan humour. The literally titled piece Red Sign is a blank red sign fixed to the wall. trailing yards of orange cable. Elsewhere. the hall-of-mirrors sensation continues with his You Bear the Stigma On Your Mug. a wonky rendering of a pinball machine with red and yellow lightbulbs and a sinister motif of a ram's head.
A mordant wit undercuts works like Peter’s Decerebrator. cut in the style of 70s concrete garden wall dividers and coated in hundreds of tiny polystyrene balls. The incomprehensible and the everyday get all mixed up in a way that is really winning.
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The incomprehensible and the everyday get mixed up
JACQUELINE DONACI-IIE: EDINBURGH SOCIETY The Round Room, Talbot Rice Gallery, Sat 29 Sep—Sat 3 Nov.
The A-Ha Revival Society. The Chill Out Society. Huggabugga Jaffa Cake (International). These are just some of the 200 student societies currently on offer at Edinburgh University, ranging from politics to sport and from serious to silly.
Glasgow-based artist Jacqueline Donachie saw this list in alphabetic order and thought it looked ‘nuts'. She also realised it could offer a fascmating insight into whether Edinburgh's students really do fit the standard
ARCHITECTURE GIA ANNUAL AWARDS 2001 The Lighthouse, Glasgow, until Sat 28 Oct 000
Installation view of the GIA Annual awards
The Glasgow Institute of Architects 22nd Annual Design Awards showcases the 40 submissions ranging from student projects to Page and Park's Museum of Scottish Country Life and the Glasgow Science Centre by Building Design Partnership. While many of the images of new architecture look intriguing and impressive. the exhibition itself offers little insight into the creative or technical processes at work. A wall-mounted lightbox displaying faxes from the architects. coupled with brief glimpses of their work in multi-screen projections. serves as a frustrating taster. leaving the visitor dissatisfied.
Despite the lack of in-depth information. the exhibition designers (Chris Stewart Architects. whose work for Fopp Records is included) have attempted to create an interactive. user-friendly display. Visitors are encouraged to vote for their favourite building at the exhibition’s entrance and. though it looks like a Dan Flavin piece. a second lightbox. placed on the floor is actually a hi-tech visitor's book. on which faxed comments will be mounted.
A student submission from the University of Strathclyde is an unexpected highlight in the exhibition. Thomas Bernatzky and Moritz Thierfelder's CD-Rom Reality Times presents a witty series of imagined proposals and responses. Familiar Glasgow sites are rendered surreal through projects Such as Maryhill Thermal Pools. the Designer Brothel, New Habitat and CCTV (Church of Celtics to Tackle Violence). superimposed onto real backgrounds. An architecture and town planning version of The Day Today. many of Reality Times‘ politically and socially conscious proposals are inventive. thought-provoking and hilarious. (Susannah Thompson)
Detail from one of Donachie’s previous projects, Advice Bar, 1996
stereotypes. Given access to university resources and the small round room at the Talbot Rice. Donachie has intrigUing plans. She will build a small podium. and the walls will bear the names of each of the societies in alphabetic order. Society members will take turns to occupy the podium at the exhibition's opening. and a huge group photograph will be taken at the end of the exhibition's run.
‘Looking at the lists. I imagine that the Chess Club would look quite nerdy.‘ says Donachie. ‘and the Chinese Society would look Chinese. but maybe they won‘t look like that. Maybe these
84 THE LIST 20 Sep-4 Oct 2001
will turn Out to be misconceptions.‘ Donachie. whose work has often been described as anthropological. is keen to create a telling docwnent of the university‘s student population at a given point in time.
The resulting photograph will be used in Donachie‘s future work. ‘But this is very project-based.‘ she says. ‘and as much about the process of taking the photograph as the thing itself. I have done this sort of live event before. with strippers and with sword dancers. but never with so many people.’
Donachie is currently Henry Moore Sculpture Fellow at Spike Island in
Bristol. where she is preparing for her solo exhibition. South. as well as taking part in the DCA‘s current show. Here i Now. Trained at Glasgow School of Art. Donachie is interested in personal and collective memory. as well as in SOCial observation.
The artist hopes that Edinburgh Society will attract students to the Talbot Rice Gallery. but also that it ‘wili bring back memories for anyone who's ever had any experience of higher education‘. Personally. I'm already recalling With horror my strange encounter with the HuggaBugga Jaffa Cake Society. (Catriona Black)
ONE STEP BEYOND Scottish Gallery, Edinburgh, until Wed 3 Oct .00.
Arts and crafts have for too long languished in the cultural hinterland. a backwater populated by woolly jumpers and wonky vases. Now. however. craft has conjoined with contemporary. and peOple are creating beautifully designed and realised work. Thus the aim of this exhibition is to promote the evolved aesthetics of craft and to evoke a relationship between the work and its environmental influences.
The ten Scottish and Welsh artists chosen for this exhibition all possess a visual harmony. a relationship that makes the pieces on display — the jewellery. the bowls. the figures and the small hangings — look like preserved. pristine artefacts from an archaeological dig. Christine Jones' delicate. spherical vessels are beautiful in their simplicity and fragility. a fact emphasised by the ruggedness of Tony Franks’ basalt and porcelain vessels that use actual organic matter from sites around Scotland. The resulting pieces look like aged rock with the history of time embedded in them. Mathew Tomalin's thick cast- iron bowls have smooth exteriors with patterns carved on the interiors. He adopts a more industrial appreciation whilst still alluding to iron‘s history. Anna Gordon's jewellery is clean and simple with the drawn line informing most of her designs.
The best works on display are Claire Curneen's clay figures and Alison Kinnaird's figures engraved in glass. Both artists employ an inventive sense of fun and ingenuity to create original. appealing pieces. Curneen's figures call to mind someone's best china smashed then reassembled and Kinnaird's little opaque figures are truly compelling. Definitely a step in the right direction. (Isabella Weir)
Standing Figure by Claire Curneen
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