Jarvis Cocker and Steve Mackey of Pulp would like to ask you a few questions. “Are you up for it? Are you afraid of the dark? Would you like to achieve mental tranquillity?” They are coming to Glasgow on 20th April for a night of “Dancefloor Medititations” in the TV Studio at SWG3, “in an attempt to access the state of mind associated with deep meditation using only the tools to be found in a suburban discotheque”. The performance, in complete darkness, will be at the invite-only official opening party of the Glasgow International – Scotland’s largest festival for contemporary art, taking place over three weeks every two years across the city – and the launch of the Acid Bar in the Galvanizers.
SWG3 Contemporary Art Exhibitions and Commissions runs from 20th April to 7th May, open daily from 10-6, Sundays 12-6, admission free.
On the evening of Friday 20th April, Scotland’s largest clear span gallery space for contemporary art will open in Finnieston on the north bank of the River Clyde. The Galvanizers is a 6,000 sq. ft. former industrial works which has been renovated and repurposed by SWG3, already recognised as one of Scotland’s leading music and events organisations.
A Roomful of Lovers (Glasgow) is the Galvanizer’s first commissioned work of art and it forms part of SWG3’s programme of commissions and exhibitions for this year’s Glasgow International.
Created by the celebrated British artist Richard Wentworth, working in collaboration with writer Victoria Miguel, it accompanies exhibitions by Judy Blame (jewellery and collage), Dmitri Galitzine (HD Video installation) and Hugo Scott (Photography). This remarkably diverse programme is united by the artists’ common use of found materials and subjects, echoing SWG3’s origins and its fifteen year transformation from a collection of disused buildings into a world-class arts venue.
For this commissioned collaboration between an artist and a writer, Wentworth appropriately works with chains of steel and Miguel, equally appropriately, chains of words. The vast open space of the Galvanizers is traversed by over 600 metres of galvanized steel chains, which sag and stretch between its Victorian red brick walls, suspended from clamps anchored to its iron girders.
The title of Miguel’s commissioned book A Volume of Fanatics (Glasgow) is derived from A Roomful of Lovers (Glasgow). It combines Wentworth’s Glossary (first published in Making Do and Getting By (2015) and Miguel’s 2012 dictionary from, My Favourite Words, Phrases, Sentences, and Paragraphs (2012) with a recent list of their words compiled and transformed into a thesaurus, celebrating their love of language and inviting readers to share in
their enthusiasm. The book is dedicated to Professors Michael Samuels and Christian Kay, the first two editors of The Historical Thesaurus of the Oxford English Dictionary, which was created at the University of Glasgow, between 1965 and 2009.
As a teenager, Judy Blame was already designing and making jewellery from found objects and and after moving to London discovered ‘mudlarking’, which would see him scouring the banks of the River Thames looking for bones and buttons with which to make his joyful, extraordinary works.
These can be seen in Blame’s second only public exhibition in SWG3’s Railway Arch (No. 21) on Eastvale Place. It features Couture Clash (1983-1989) comprising twenty-two framed collages, exhibited with Assorted Jewellery (2005-2018) and Blame’s Art Rehabilitation collages, made before and after rehabilitation treatment in 1999. He once stated “I don’t think that a diamond is better than a safety pin; to me it’s just a thing or a shape.”
An Elvis impersonator, a lonely American diner and twin girls standing on top of a military tank are all subjects in Hugo Scott’s exhibition On the edge of town, which welcome visitors to SWG3’s newly created Acid Bar ~ also opening on 20th April. These highly charged colour photographs are characterised by a sense of immediacy and Scott’s remarkable empathy with his subjects – encountered during visits to conventions and festivals across the world. Scott’s photographs have been featured in many leading publications and he is a member of the photography collective DoBeDo.
On the edge of town continues in the Photography Studio on Level two, which is also open for public viewing for the first time. SWG3’s third commission for GI 2018 (and the first for its Warehouse space on level one) is by Dmitri Galitzine. At This Stage, 2018 (48 minutes) is a multi screen HD video installation, filmed over a four-month residency at The Dance Attic Studios, a music and dance rehearsal studios in the old Fulham Bath House, London. A sanctuary to all the great stars over the years, it is known as one of the most acclaimed and celebrated institutions in the industry. Presented across three screens in the otherwise deserted club venue, At This Stage is a touching and at times hilarious portrayal of life behind the scenes and in front of the rehearsal mirror.
Artist Biographical Information:
Richard Wentworth (b. 1947). A seminal figure in British art since the ‘70s, Wentworth’s work, encircling
the notion of objects and their use as part of our day-to-day experiences, has altered the traditional
definition of sculpture as well as photography. By transforming and manipulating industrial and/or found
objects into works of art, he subverts their original function and extends our understanding of them by
breaking the conventional system of classification. Recent solo exhibitions include: Azzedine Alaïa, Paris
(2018), Bold Tendencies, London, (2015), Black Maria with Gruppe, London, (2013), Whitechapel Gallery,
London, (2010), 52nd Venice Biennale, (2009), He lives and works in London.
Victoria Miguel (b. 1977). Victoria Miguel is a writer. Her book My Favourite Words, Phrases, Sentences,
and Paragraphs was published by The Proconsul Editions in 2012. She worked for the estate of the
maverick composer, John Cage, and was commissioned by them to create an online version of Cage’s
composition Reunion (1968), which premiered in tandem with her play Laquearia at Summerhall as part of
the Edinburgh Festival Fringe in 2013. In 2016, her company, Smith+Brown, staged the first full re-creation
of Cage’s infamous first ‘happening,’ the ‘Event’ at Black Mountain College in London.
Judy Blame (B. Christopher Barnes,1947-2018). A child of the ‘80s London club scene, Judy Blame came
to prominence alongside fellow creatives including Leigh Bowery and John Galliano. In 1985 he helped
John Moore to set up The House of Beauty and Culture in Dalston, later collaborating with designers
including; Comme des Garçons, Gareth Pugh and Kim Jones (Louis Vuitton). In demand as a stylist, he
reshaped the careers of artists including; Neneh Cherry, Bjork, Boy George, Kylie Minogue, Massive Attack
and Iggy Pop. Judy’s mantra was both simple and effective; Make something, Wear it, Cause trouble.
Hugo Scott (b. 1978). Hugo Scott’s interest in photography was awoken in childhood, by seeing his father’s
travel photographs and he began taking photographs himself whilst still a teenager; fascinated by the
medium. He works in film using virtually all formats, from 35mm to 5” x 4” and the works in this exhibition
were all been printed by hand, from Scott’s original negatives taken on location in the U.S.A., Brazil, Japan,
South America and the U.K. Born in Edinburgh, Scott now lives and works in New York City and this is his
first public solo exhibition.
Dmitri Galitzine (b. 1986). Dmitri Galitzine graduated from The Royal Academy Schools (London) in 2017.
His work is set within folk culture and it uses the kind of stories that you might see in regional newspapers;
about a giant vegetable or an Elvis impersonator or a world record attempt ~ stories that are both absurd
and amazing, ordinary and epic. The driving force behind these narratives are the individuals and
communities which display a palpable belief in something; even if others think it’s daft. The artist’s stories
portray people as characters, where the viewer is unable to tell the difference between the real and role
play. He lives and works in London.