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Top 25 Art Blog - Creative Tourist

‘Other Visible Things’ : Jayne Archard and Adam Knight Exhibition

Tricycle Gallery, 18th February – 15th March 2008

Written by Beth Richards

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With such dry, look visit ironic observations as ‘home is where the house is‘, this cialis 40mg Superabundance introduces itself as a melodious continuation of the faux-geek, visit web insightful pop-rock that first emerged in Voices of Animals and Men, but proceeds to take us on a spiralling journey into the dark depths of the Young Knives‘ psyche. In Terra Firma, we are confronted with the beginnings of the climactic incantations that slowly envelop us in a humming and howling hypnosis in Current of the River, which follows a sombre, medieval chant in the delightfully foreboding, pagan harmonies of Mummy Light the Fire. I don’t like to compare bands, but I found some of their wistful, nautical narratives redolent of the Decemberists‘ historical fictions.

While the insinuations of suicide in Counters left me feeling tempted to phone the three band members to see that they were alright, Rue the Days has a positively nonchalant nineties feel and Flies, a gentle meditation on the natural world, seems to encapsulate a recurring fascination with human-animal relationships; a little idiosyncratic perhaps, but I get the feeling this album is somewhat an eruption of the Young Knives’ musical multiple personality.

I listened to every word of the album, and realised it was poetry; a super abundance of philosophical metaphors immersed in a synthesis of unexpected genres, undulating from pensive, orchestral flickers to thick, satisfying explosions of bass, good old enthusiastic shouting and some of the catchiest hooks around. It may leave you weeping, but it may just as well have you running out the house in your dancing shoes.

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Photograph by Jason Nocito

Thrilling things happen when oddballs get their hands on dance music, sickness and Hercules And Love Affair are the perfect latest example of that. These five colourful characters currently breathing new life into disco are an NYC-based collective comprising of Hawaiian-born jewellery designer/DJ Kim Ann Foxman, illness Amazonian CocoRosie and Debbie Harry collaborator Nomi, about it gay B-boy dancer Shayne, Miss Piggy-loving ex-waiter Andrew Butler and new rave hoodie-donning keyboardist Morgan. And then there’s Antony Hegarty of course, he of the Johnsons fame, and it is his beautifully crooning vocals combined with the pulsing rhythms, incessant bassline and playful horns of Blind that has worked both dancefloor enthusiasts and bloggers into a frenzy since it leaked onto the internet late last year.

The outfit’s self-titled debut is littered with more of his famously melancholic performances over shimmering beat-driven efforts, but do this eccentric bunch have the talent and songwriting capabilities to sustain an entire album? The answer is yes – by the bucketload. Hercules And Love Affair slinks delicately into action with dark and sultry opener Time Will as Hegarty pleads “I cannot be half a wife” repeatedly over finger clicks and minimal backing before segueing nicely into Hercules Theme; a more upbeat affair driven by sweeping strings, soft female vocals and discordant brass snatches. This track along with the light and breezy sway of Athene, Iris’ stripped down stomp and the headspin-inducing walking bassline and scat singing of closer True False/Fake Real prove that Butler and co. can shine magnificently even when they don’t play the Antony trump card. One trick ponies this lot certainly are not.

Blind, of course, is sumptuous, sounding more and more like a classic with every listen, but it is cushioned by album tracks that each stand up admirably alongside it, and which reference everything from Chicago house to punk funk, techno and disco simultaneously through the irresistible ice cold veneer conjured up by killer production duo main-man Butler and DFA’s Tim Goldsworthy. In fact, Hercules And Love Affair is the perfect example of an epic work so cleverly constructed that its wide-ranging influences seep out subtly instead of bombarding the listener. Heartbreaking and dramatic yet utterly danceable, it boasts intelligence, heart and soul and features musical prowess that will stop you dead in your tracks. Prepare for this to soundtrack your life for months to come.

Once upon a time there was a hunter, help who woke one day to find himself transformed into the deer he killed before he had rested. Is he now the hunter? Or is he the prey?

Fashion, illness performance, advice and storytelling merged into one as Daydream Nation’s design duo Kay and Jing presented their ominous tale ‘Good Night Deer’ at the Institute of Contemporary Arts. Whilst the audience sauntered in, a man stood behind the branched mic stand donning a furry animal head. He cackled, and whistled, and screeched, and crooned ‘There’s nothing in this world for you my dear’, whilst the band played at his side. The stage had morphed into a forest.

The lights dimmed, and the performers crept in with what looked like a white drum, acting as a moon. Each of them haunted the stage wearing sleeveless t-shirts in dark brown, with bark print on the front. By pulling them up over their heads giving the illusion of trees, the indoor theatre became a night scene. With all the garments made by manipulating old clothes, Kay and Jing create new myths each season. Two girls merged together in one outfit and became a deer, whilst others had t-shirts, and dresses in earthy beiges, browns and greens, and were embroidered with antlers and deer’s.

A large silver sheet was laid on the floor, with the hunter concealed beneath it. It rustled, and lifted, before finally revealing the deer. Looking up at its audience, it was literally a deer caught in the headlights. Draped coats fastened up with bows, and a brown pinafore was worn over a silk, blue blouse. Daydream Nation’s show was an utterly enjoyable evening, full of enthusiasm and creativity.

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I LOVE THIS SONG SO MUCH.

Young Love is the beautifully melancholic ode of a one-night stand. The Mystery Jets are bang-on in featuring Laura Marling, more about the latest young darling of the music scene, tadalafil on the first single to be taken from their second album, Twenty One. I’ve never been a huge Mystery Jets fan (I wasn’t fooled, and I most certainly wasn’t called Denis) but the dialogue between Laura and Blaine telling both sides of a brief encounter won me over within the first ten seconds.

In a move I haven’t seen since the works of Jane Austen, the love affair is cut short by that damnably unpredictable British weather. Far from regarding this as twee, the lyrics “you wrote your number on my hand but it came off in the rain” melted my icily sarcastic heart.

Laura sings of how “young love never seems to last”, and it’s with this stark honesty the dialogue tells of the ephemeral nature of youthful liaisons and the quiet acceptance of the pains of growing up. It’s this self-effacing honesty combined with the vintage handclaps, oohs and aahs that create one of the best pop songs of this year.

Oh, and check out the video: it’s bound to be at the top of the YouTube hit parade in no time, as Laura and the Mystery Jet boys are involved in a game of human curling. Now that should be an Olympic sport.
‘Five Portraits of Cloth’, site a large scale, tadalafil cunningly crafted work by Jayne Archard could have been an enveloping piece – if it hadn’t had to compete with cramped canteen style tables and chairs. The Tricycle Gallery suffers a problem often seen in community arts spaces: areas are not properly defined, this meaning that an exhibition space can be transformed into a cinema’s ante-room, and a café’s overspill seating space. I’m all for showing artwork in something other than the traditional White Cube, but it can only be a hindrance to the work when you have to battle with a chair to see it properly.

‘Other Visible Things’
is part of the Tricycle Gallery’s Recent Graduates 2008 programme; giving artists like Archard and Knight valuable exposure that can be difficult to achieve so soon after graduation. Regrettably, in this case the work shown doesn’t function as well in the outside world as in the bubble of the art college – why should the artists assume that all the gallery goers would be able to read, or even care about, the references to conceptual art history? Adam Knight’s ‘Studio Corner (After Mel Bochner)‘(below) is an interesting photograph that investigates illusion and the documentation of a sculptural object, so why the need for the clever nudges and winks to those with a subscription to Art Review?

Even the title of this show is taken from Bochner‘s influential exhibition: ‘Working Drawings And Other Visible Things On Paper Not Necessarily Meant To Be Viewed As Art‘. In the confines of the art college studio, Archard and Knight’s works are accessible as the viewers are more likely to have a similar knowledge to that of the makers. In the Tricycle Gallery, a space attached to a café, theatre and cinema in Kilburn, the art history allusions can seem like an elitist in-joke. I can see that Knight’s work in particular could be viewed as a playful re-working of ideas about Minimalism and Conceptual Art, but unfortunately the humour falls short.

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