Monday 17 August 2015

CHARLES AVERYIngleby Gallery, Edinburgh 

By coincidence a few days before I saw CHARLES AVERY's show we were in Mull. I had no idea that Avery comes from Oban & has a place on the Isle of Mull, (To get to Mull u take the ferry from Oban.) but I recognised the quay .. right away. 
And that explains the eels, fish, quays, & of course the fact that his work revolves around an island and its Islanders. Avery's island is called Onamatopoeia - what else? - 
The most beautiful work on show is this single slithery eel - gorgeous! 
more eels.
But then there are the inhabitants with their Eastern head-dresses. What to make of them??  Sometimes they provide the only colour among the pencil. 

Having your own imaginary country is a convenient way to comment on politics, culture, - skinny adolescents up to no good; stout older men ditto. The females are all young n' sexy. We await his comment on immigration to his island. Will the dark skinned immigrants snap up all the women?? Who knows. 
I first saw Avery's impressive large work at GMA - such a relief these days to find an artist who can draw! I had no idea he was pretty well self taught. 
Now he has added design objects and furniture to his arsenal. Some work better than others. And the display is too sparse to really get an idea of his skills in this area. 

He has made a large "tree" from one of the drawings, & the 'tree' is now installed in Waverly Station. As far as public art goes, it's weak. So back to the drawings - 

With their harbour steps, buoys, eels, long legged birds & sea creatures, it's back to Mull - or Onamatopoeia as Avery calls it. 

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