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Submit Response is a weblog by Jack Mottram, a journalist who lives in Glasgow, Scotland. There are 1308 posts in the archives. You can subscribe to a feed. This post was made on and belongs in the art and culture category. The previous post was , and the next post is .

Disentanglement & Knotting

A quick plug: if you’re in Glasgow, go to Lowsalt this weekend to see ‘Not a disentanglement from but a progressive knotting into’.

A slightly off-putting title for a show, maybe, but it fits. The three artists, Steven Anderson, Dougie Morland and Javier Ferro don’t have much in common on the surface, but the more time you spend with their work, the more the links between the three become apparent.

The best stuff is by Dougie, I think - he has made a great big looming wing thing based on a drawing by a psychiatric patient, that has a really black front and a softly glowing back. The result is pretty disconcerting, as if the wing is a shadow casting its own shadow made of light. He’s done a couple of drawings too, of branks—tongue torture devices used to silence and punish uppity women in the 17th Century—one of which looks like a Rorschach inkblot test with only one possible interpretation. That all sounds a wee bit goth written out, but it’s really an attempt to draw together ideas around the collective unconscious, psychoanalysis and superstition. Disclaimer: I’ve known Dougie for yonks, but if I thought his work was bibble, I would definitely say so!


Steve Anderson’s work is right up my street, too. He’s a bit like an ethnographer, or an anthropological archaeologist of the present, and looks at the social interactions around an absent performance by collecting up broken bits and bobs—snapped guitar strings, busted drumsticks—from the floors of rehearsal rooms, and photographing folk as they arrive at a gig. I missed his own performance on opening night, but it seems he’s working on wordless folk songs made up of overheard exclamations, which is pretty intriguing.


Javier Ferro is the weak link, really, but in this context his work stands up, especially the concrete table with an unfinished letter on it, reading, weirdly, “Dearest, I have to think about you everywhere I am. I am therefore writing to you from my boss’ office whom I’m representing at the moment”.

So, yeah, good stuff: lots of fizzing little connections between the work, which all touches on potential futures, half-remembered pasts and undefined relationships. And, for once, this is a show about memory—the current de facto curatorial justification for every sodding group exhibition you see—that’s actually about memory!

Update: My review of the show for The Herald.

Posted at 1pm on 28/06/07 by Jack Mottram to the art and culture category.
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