Thursday 17 April 2014

Glasgow Open House,

 by Fran Light - not me.
With Glasgow International plus Open House all opening at once, I decided to ask Fran to research some locations and let us know what she thinks about them.
This weekend I will follow up with comments on GI plus a few Open House. Being a critic can be hard on the feet!
Glasgow Open House, a new festival organised by recent GSA graduates, has seen a crop of 32 exhibitions opening their doors in artists’ homes and other non-gallery locations across the city. Here, sculptures nestle in stairwells; unexpected sounds can be found emitting from cupboards; shower curtains double as projection screens. I spent a weekend exploring the offerings.
At 51 Grant St, the garden is filled with (see below) Emma Ewan’s sculptural jigsaw puzzle 'Modular Manner' – great fun in Saturday’s sunshine – whilst an intriguing show by Madeleine Virginia Brown and Stella Stewart at 16 Baliol St explores the relationship between model and artist. A sound piece recounting Brown’s inner monologue whilst life modelling is a particular highlight.
'HALLelujah! 3' sees Janie Nicoll’s hallway at 212 West Princes St given over to a variety of artists working with collage; the space at 1 Royal Terrace (which, despite being the only full-time gallery included in the programme, is nevertheless housed inside a flat) is transformed with the darkly architectural sculptures of Augustus Veinoglou. Outside, I find Catherine Hotchkiss and William Aikman’s interactive installation ‘Scope’, an enormous electronic kaleidoscope housed in the back of a van. Being mobile, Scope will be moving around different venues over the course of the festival – keep track of it via
On the Southside, ‘I Bought a Little City’ at 101 Forth St comprises four artists’ responses to Donald Barthelme’s short story of the same name, spanning painting, artist books, video, sculpture and the written word. A couple of blocks away on Leven St, ‘Romantic Possibilities in Modern Flats’ sees artists Andrew Black, Bradley Davies and Nick Thomas cohabiting with the works of invited artists Dan Hays, Paul Housley and Torsten Lauschmann, curating these alongside a selection of their own pieces. The excellent show ‘A Gyrus to Define Us’ at 100 Deanston Drive is well worth the walk, particularly for Jack Farrell and Angel Reid's 'Roaming Colonies' - motorised sculptures, camouflaged cunningly against the bathroom floor.
Artists and curators are on hand at every venue, happy to chat about the work and offer cups of tea, and consequently there aren’t enough hours in the day to see every show. Luckily, the festival will open its doors again next Saturday 19 and Sunday 20 April. With an exciting selection of artists in unorthodox venues, Open House certainly proves that Glasgow’s DIY ethos is alive and well – and, funding permitting, it looks set to be an annual event.                                       by Fran Lightbound 
 Elizabeth Rowe

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