Glsgow enters ronze age
Gorbals sculpture to rival Angel Of The North. Words: Tim Abrahams
magine a bronze 4m figure of a woman suspended from a
roof. 20in high. stretching between two four-storey tenements.
Imagine it hanging in front of a huge photograph. 5m by 6m. of a woman walking through an empty fact0ry towards the camera. Imagine an undergroond Crypt filled With ashes. Imagine yourself looking at The Gatekeeper. the largest piece of public art to be commiSSioned in Glasgow.
Created by Matt Baker and Dan Dubowtz. collectively known as Heisenberg. The Gatekeeper has evolved out of nearly three years of dOCLimenting the life of Glasgow's SOLithSide. The team's biggest protect to date ceiild do as much as Anthony Gormley's Angel Of The North to restore the prestige of public art.
Heisenburg are public artists. critics of crassly commercial design who were wisely coopted by Glasgow's City Of Architecture And DeSign in 1999 to prowde a different perspective. They covered Springburn Public Halls in candles and reopened the abandoned Gorbals Railway Station. They pointed out that 10 per cent of Glasgow urban area is derelict by filling it with orange men. They had a party underneath the Kingston Bridge.
Unfonunately. as Baker admits. ‘public art is SUCh a bankrupt term because there's so much bad public art“. He adds: ‘There's been a split between the artist and the public. Traditionally artists like Michelangelo worked only to commission. but fer a long time we have not had a satisfactOry way of working in public because
The joy of text
I Saw You joins interactive partner. Words: David Allan e're all now familiar with the SMS text messaging epidemic that has taken the nation by storm as an inexpenSive. funky means of communication for the masses. But now. The List and Glasgow based Saiiv-Youcom are set to take textual interc0urse to the next level. Already well known to readers of the magazine. The LISTS I Saw You personal page is set to hook up with Saw- Youcom to bring you the future of textual healing. ‘The initial Similarities between our serVices made The List a perfect first partner,‘ says Saw-You CEO Mike Kinsella.
Already well established with over 1.4 million users. the Saw—You site is a social search engine that allows users to chat With other users in their city anonymously via secure SMS text messaging. Prospective users log on to the site and complete a Virtual questionnaire which acts as a SOCial fingerprint. allowing other users to chat and flirt With them based on their profile. This profile not orin includes a physical description of the user. but also incorporates the bars. clubs. and other venues they frequent. alloy-ring them to interface With like~minded text maniacs.
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there's been this split. We are interested in cioSing that split.'
Good public art reguires research and dedication to capture a local spirit. Heisenburg has certainly put ll‘ the hours. Not only has Dubowtz exhibited a series of superb photographs of the Gorbals' Queen Elizabeth Square before it was demohsned. but also he has reCOrded over 2:30 hOurs of intervenv ‘oetage in the Shopping centre: everyone from retired drug dealers to the last Jewish lil’dl‘ to live in an area once a haven from the pogroms of the eariy ’20th century. ‘We've defined ourselves as agents for people's shared social incinery and more importantly their identity.' says Baker. ‘The fact that the Gorbals has been demolished for the second time in 50 years means that a sense of continuity is vitaif
The Gatekeeper is the expreSSion of a plethora of local stories. combining the idea of a benevolent guardian with the idea of the Gorbals as a gateway to immigrants. Informed by history. The Gatekeeper is a work of art tne Success of which V/lli not be klIOV/l‘ for another decade or two. Only then will we discover whether it is a token gesture or a symbol of civic unity in a fractured seeiety.
The Gatekeeper, on the corner of Caledonia Road and Cathcart Road in the Redrow Housing Scheme, Glasgow,wi|l be unveiled on Wed 27 Mar at 11am, and will be lit at 6pm. Dan Dubovitz is recovering from a major operation. The List wishes him well.
To get texting, visit www.|ist.co.uk and click the saw-you icon on screen. Alternatively, pick up your mobile right now and do this:
vi: Work out what city you are in (Edinburgh or Glasgow)
Give yourself a chat handle between five to eight characters (like Listyguy)
Type into your mobile: Join Glasgow Listyguy
at Send this SMS to the Saw-you number 077 8641 0318
i1; Seconds later you will get a string of replies
«1» Pick someone to chat to and type: Chat, along with their name and your message
When they reply, all you have to do to respond is type: Reply, along with your message.
1.? How the mighty have fallen. Gary Barlow. the man credited with penning all : Take That's finest moments. only to watch Robbie Williams walk away with international fame has stooped to his lowest ebb. Apparently. he has written songs for Pop Idol reject Rik Waller's debut album. due Out in May . . . Are you between 25 and 40’? Does your urban garden need a makeover”? Then get in touch with Two Four Productions which COtild be filming in your backyard over the Summer for a fonhcoming Channel 4 Show. Simply email gillliennessey<a)twofour. cook for details . . . John Lasseter. director of the Toy Story films and Monsters, Inc. is planning a “cartoon Jacques Cousteau' for his next project. Finding Nemo will have tropical fish as central characters . . . How would you like to play a role in the next Ian Rankin novel? lt'll cost you. but all for a good cause. as an auction is being set up in aid of Leonard Cheshire Scotland which allows you to become the highest bidder and secure yOur place in literary history. Or something. Between 15 and 22 March. you should log on to wvaXLcom smile and start your bid rolling
. Sam Peckinpah's cult claSSic Bring Me The Head Of A/fredo Garcia is being remade by Samuel Bayer, best known for directing Nirvana's ‘Smells Like Teen Spirit' promo.
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