Aron Tarjani and Miranda Whall: If I Open My Eyes I Might See Teeth (3 stars)

Washington Garcia, Glasgow, run ended


The second offering from the Glasgow artist-run collective Washington Garcia brings together video and film work by Hungarian artist Aron Tarjani and Cardiff-based Miranda Whall. (Their first exhibition, a month ago, featured installed drawings and animation by Icelandic artist Sigga Bjorg Sigurdardottir, and acted as a safe entry into the Glasgow art-scene.)

Whall’s animated watercolours play with the badly understood Freudian idea that women and animals are narcissists, displaying themselves for an invisible gaze. The viewer (male or female) can never wield this omnipotent gaze, of course, but Whall forces the onlooker to occupy such an impossible position, making him/her watch well-painted representations of the artist masturbating with a dildo while birds, a fish and cat encircle the artist at work. This isn’t even slightly shocking, demonstrating that porn is wallpaper, that art can be thought of as self-congratulatory and so on. The viewer acts as an inconsequential variable.

Sexual metaphors leak into the second room, where a film of Tarjani shucking an oyster is playing. The juxtaposition with Whall’s work may be crude, but it is also humorous. The oyster is forcibly taken in this mini-celebration of sex and violence, but the money shot is off camera - we do not see if the artist spits or swallows this glorious glob of libido fuel.

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