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National Gallery of Modern Art, until Fri 31 Dec .0.

As a conceit, this one is a little confused. Anyone interested in his work knows that Warhol‘s art was linked to and effusive of the US concept of international commerce as dripped through his obsessions with art and death. To underline the fact, as this exhibition does, seems a little too obvious. But that’s not really surprising considering that many things about this collection of Warhol's odds and ends seems badly thought out - from the dispersal of the paintings and photographs to the poor accessibility for people with physical disabilities.

The work, however, speaks for itself. The hallway leading into the first room features Warhol's extraordinary 1986 turquoise on white painting of the Statue of Liberty a more quirky, oblique yet sneakin pejorative take on a national symbol there has rarely been.

Room 1 is filled with Warhol’s works in synthetic polyester paint and silkscreen ink, and the works cover the middle to late work period of Warhol from between 1972 and 1986. Highlights here include the Gilbert and George diptych whose sober and restrained salmon (Gilbert) and baby blue (George) hues belie the cannibalistic nature of the iconography. The stunning centrepiece is the gold and black on white ‘Dollar Sign’ (1981) - a roughly scribbled hymn to the symbol that had governed Warhol’s every movement for most of his life. ‘Self Portrait (Strangulation)’, the six piece silkscreen, is also interesting in that it signals the classicism often embraced by - though not always obviously - Warhol’s work of the period.

Room 2 boasts an unusual selection of Warhol’s ‘sown photographs’ produced between 1976 and 1986. These bizarre moments snatched from eternity are a bunch of little gems, and include the serene ‘Baby Church Dolls‘, ‘Cough Sign’ and the disturbing ‘Dissection Class’.

Up the stairs and onto another level, Room 3 contains some of his better known works,


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Andy Warhol's Statue of Liberty

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‘Camouflage' (1986), the Valerie Solanis inspired ‘Gun' (1981) and ‘10 Brillo Boxes' (1968). A kind of slight greatest hits that is only interrupted by the Warhol’s dissolving blur portraits of Josef Beuys and Robert Mapplethorpe and the deceptively simple ‘Hamburger‘, Warhol‘s interpretation of a simple hamburger sign, this is the man at his most proletarian yet polemical. (Paul Dale)

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Collective Gallery, Edinburgh, until Sat 9 Oct 00..


The Birthday Party

With the ()ollective's off site programme for 900-1 garnering significant critical praise and attention throughout the month of August. this show sees the gallery rein its interests in to focus on the traditional Cockbum Street premises Yet The Birthday Party is. if anything, more expansive than the Festival displays. As the title makes plain. it's now 20 years since the Collective opened its doors as an artist run space. consolidating. in the interim. its pOs‘ition as one Of the UK's most supportive small scale outlets for new creatives. Following on from a similarly

themed show alter the ten year anniversary, The Birthday Party is a celebration of the very best artists to have exhibited in the gallery over the last decade. l-lence creatives of repute. notoriety. relative obscurity and something approaching real fame all share wall space DaVId Shrigley. lvloyna Hillllllgilll. Alan Currall. Bob and Roberta Smith and Chad McCall are among the (30 exhibitors. for sheer diversity and breadth of subject matter. in other words. it absolutely demands a viewing, regardless of whether or not you actually end up liking everything.

llieie are stills. paintings. Video artworks. sculptures. comic books. and even an incongruous steel railing by Jacgueliiie [)onachie entitled 'lhree Piiikston Dine - Section', Despite most of the work being recent. the young artists concerned unite under a refreshing and not entirely uncharactmistic disrespect for traditional themes. Take Dan Willson's pornographic kids' book ‘Big Ted The Horrible liuth‘, for example. or Curiall's ‘Phoney Sketchbook. lambasting depressing performance art. But Lyn lowensteins ret‘xcled banner sums the ethic up best ~ The Future ls Ours. it reads. like the Collective's manifesto wrote large. iDavid Pollocki

(JOl [Atil TONY SWAIN The Modern Institute, until Fri 1 Oct, .0

High l uropean rnodeinisiii has been parodied, .‘ippioriiiali-il. llll'~.’l[ ipii ‘ltllrilt‘tI illill copied. the debris of such interventions has littered the flour. and I‘t‘i‘ll lift ‘ltlil‘lI up against the walls of Glasgow studios. galleries and a; or w, mini i- thi' iiii l‘ l“lll|'>l avanl gaide (lecampeil from mainland l uiope to New York ft) yt’.ll'. .igo \f-Jith thi- iise of a (often badly understood) formalism in the (it; over the last ili‘i .ide have been experiencing a micro renaissance exploring flatness. .iir hitei tiiial subject matter and now something approaching the tamed ( iil ‘l‘vl i ollagi.

loiiy Swain is the latest sufferer of this melaiicholia. Marry of thi- .iwathi-tii connotations of his work are greater then the denotations “\iirt f‘w li.-.ifti-r‘.' ,iiriL collages are torn up and reconstructed in soothing Paolo/xi ii e ( iiain pastels, and throbbing Kandiiiskyesriue auras int up against angular l e U iiliii';i.iii houses. lhe subject matter mostly consists of decoiistruiterl then “4 oristrui ti-d architecture. which occupies the illusionistic or "believable spar it of .i mid ground. Wllll the occasional cut out figure woven into the nap

Swain's work is traditionally surrealist in that respect, but is at its strongest when he moves away from the figurative into what appears to be total lll‘ h .ili',tr.ii tioii Hyper real American influences are ('()llfil)l(ill()ll‘; by their absenr e, \.‘.llll h is both refreshing and somewhat disorientating.

Amongst the sheaves of his painted collagr-s you could selei t a few {Jll‘lllf'l examples where there is originality and aesthetic worth. Swain uses gouache's flattening tendency to great effect. by letting it mirror and match the flatness of the inky newspaper he uses as the ground for these pieces. But while this exhibition is a welcome relief for sympathetic readers who are sick of painted MDF. it makes you wish there were a Postmodern Institute" . as well as a Modern , Institute in Glasgow. iAlex Kennedyi

Transatlantic by Tony Swain

2"; Sep i' ()2: HM“. THE LIST 91