Variant issue12    www.variant.org.uk    variantmag@btinternet.com    back to issue list


20 reviews 20 mins
Mr Tayto & Mr Tayto


CITY CENTRE
Vivre sa merde, Transmission.

Centrally situated in city, on main bus route, towards the end of winter. Simply the best in high quality blends of stylish intelligent French design and value for money, in an expensive demi-monde. The dream of total theatre, is still a dream.
Lesiureland, Tramway.
Philippe Parreno and Pierre Huyghe have proceeded like men of experience in this business, and taken the natural road to undermine most with their big videos, very shiny shoes and long expanses of boredom.
Sticky Carpet, Project Room.
This whole matter of boozy underfelt gives the rank conception, or migrating sensation of a potato-faced man clad in a toga of servile retribution. The Devil! Pooh!
Anomalous Phenomena, Free Gallery.
We started cracking open the champagne, fell into a bottle and stayed there. We were absolutely smashed. There was an eeriness, a strange panic and hushed desperation, evident on the faces of the devoted before we woke up the next morning with our first hangovers since 1994. But we couldn't believe our bleary eyes when stunning Suzi snubbed our advances.
Mandelson of Rio, Gallery Charisma.
Describing the horrendous anthropocentrism of the '50s interests us enormously, but not as much as the old habits of rabid and bigoted partisanship.
The TuckShop, Intermedia.
You use a glass mirror to see your face; we use fresh and vivid beauty to see our soles.
Alison Watt: Sheet Folder, The Modern Institute.
High tech sex and filth intertwining doctrine and method from the air guitarist of horny duvet sets and hospital corners. Put this one on your wedding list for a few jejune points.
The Schaffhausen Videonale 20001, Kunsthalle Germany.
The curators of this years Videonale somehow seem to have settled for nothing less than a celebration of polysemy single channel Cornwallisation. Billy Chapel is one of many up and coming video nasties (by far the best). His installation 'The Wurst is yet to come' involves a video projection of a sausage on a plate being eaten. This seems a little old fashioned and some might say (Oasis) outdated, but Chapel's uniqueness has not yet been revealed and the fact he audaciously made the video projector sit inside a 6ft long (2ft diameter) block displays potential. Personally I didn't need to see the small sign saying 'do not eat the sausage'.
Supernatural Behaviour for the Festive Season, Fly Gallery.
A shark adventure to really get your teeth into, the ultimate rat-on-the-wall 'will they won't they?' rockumentary for mumbling apostles of the moderne.
'It is not the society that seems ridiculous to me, it is mankind', Sebastian Coe gallery, Southampton.
Five times this year, shows have existed. Sebastian shows himself to have emotive language, providing philistinism that confronts middle class cinnamon protocol.
CAPITAL CITY
The Umpire Strikes Bach, Collective Gallery.
Smooth blend of undetermined cricket, baroque music and profoundly big backlit hair.
Astroturf Castles, Protayto Academy.
Witness my death to vanity. Less ornamental 'action', more talk depending on a further auxiliary language. Waco 2: the comebach
Too Close for Comfort, Fruitmarket Gallery.
Two heads are better than none. Art as a partisan of agrarian reform, a bear-leader friskily celebrating the appellation of the bird of paradise.
Nicotine Patch, Inverleith House.
The table in the middle of the floor was as big as a house and the chairs around it were as high as trees.
Archibald Campbell and Harley WS Photography Prize, Stills.
There's nothing quite so horrific as man's inhumanity to man, and whenever an unusual historical tale comes to light, Archibald Campbell and his intrepid assistant Harley WS will be there to investigate.
Difficile est saturam non scribere, Sleeper Gallery.
It's difficult not to write satire.
REGIONAL
Maybe it was me, Limosine Bull, Aberdeen.

'Crazy' artist Toni Davies has researched the history of the gallery building, finding out that his own father used to torture dwarves and freaks on site with croquet mallet interventions. These works shamefully pander to the society of the spectacle, but never-the-less we loved looking at his sordid documentation.
Live and Let Die, Cornerhouse, Manchester.
A farcical stinking mass of stones and lime and dung scab and hunger.
Ethnic Rug Thug, Terrance Donovan Gallery, Jersey.
Tayto never seen scene like this. Terrance illustrates the sixth zeal of Koresh. Koresh for all his bad press/faith is actually correct. Terrance made Tayto smile with what he did, excluding his own vanity and tendency to make love sex gestures at Tayto wife.
Masters of the Universe, Delfina Project Space, Croydon.
What is it with you about rock music, every time a 'pun' concerning Iron Maiden, MOR and what-have-you crops up, you seem to slag them off. An example here is the Satan project. We don't know what makes you think that rock bands write about the Devil all the time, 'cos none of the records we listen to do anything of the sort. And if you think Iron Maiden are a 'crappy heavy metal' group, then perhaps you'd like to explain why No Prayer For The Dying has gone straight in at Number Two?
Best Before, Matthew Higgs' Fridge, London.
As Hollywood gave us stability, Jeremy Deller and Jim Carey got busy in the icebox.
Bring back Working Practice, The Annual Programme, Manchester.
Bring back working practice is an exhibition held at Clive Sinclair's first studio in sixteen years, based in a schemie (non-context specific) metal grill fronted 7Up outlet just east of brick Lane (pool table and soft drinks with posters on ceiling only) and the (Pheonix Specific) Pheonix pub in Broughton St, Edinburgh. The work seems to benefit from a hands-on application which derives from being tried out in the studio first. Conceptually it seems to deal with issues such as Hitchcock, and modern urban life, including sport (which takes place inside the touch lines only).
One Liner Designer, institute of myopic research, Dundee.
Lucas van Valkenborch provides interest but fucks up by concentrating largely on the glamour of institutionalised peripheral activity through a critique of the suggested relationship between science and washing powder (Radion).
White Van Man, Ormeau Baths, Belfast.
Virgins under hedges and scarlet whores confront the multi-national networked economy with a tower of traumatic mince (and pies).
Mongrel Tate Website, Tate Modern, London.
Morning boys! Once-in-a-lifetime chance to invite dissent. Capitalism will be over soon, unfortunately.
Steamy Windows, Anthony Wilkinson, London.
If Madonna has the time, she really must pick up a few sartorial tips on cowboy gear from future Turner Prize nominee Nicky Hirst.
Common Culture, Gaswerk, London.
Nothing was at stake except perhaps the truth. In private, we had contended that we didn't like Common Culture but that they were the real thing, which was the view pretty generally held at the time. I remember that Mr Tayto about '90, '91 asked me, "You don't really think about common culture do you?" He was for Common Culture, but for him and others Common Culture did something else, it wasn't good. You could see it, those beautiful hands, all that stuff. By the time Common Culture were discovered though, he had lost their stuff. They went over well though. I thought when I wrote that, they had lost it, that I was asserting the truth, protecting the truth, establishing the truth, re-establishing it, I thought that's what I had to do. Mr Tayto himself knew it was bullshit, but he was ready to accept any explanation for what they did, because they were hard up for words.
In for a penny, in for a pound, Dundee Contemporary Arts, London.
By transforming the 'white triangle' into a Cockney bookmakers, Carey Young makes her name appear in front of our eyes as we enter a coma.
WAR-U-LIKE, Walker Art Centre, Minneapolis.
Being fond of the ladies tends to obstruct and neutralise critique of the less significant cultural realignments at stake, excluding copious lyrical passages that have narrower parallels in culture, weaving tangled webs of mostly doomed but interesting insects.

Mr Tayto and Mr Tayto are associated convienience snack manufacturers, based in Eire and Northern Ireland respectively.