Michael Wilkinson: Lions after Slumber (3 stars)

Michael Wilkinson: Lions after Slumber

This exhibition’s title is taken from a poem by Shelley but also references a song by post-punk group Scritti Politti. Glasgow-based artist Michael Wilkinson adds new cultural meaning through an intelligent array of aesthetic play.

Encountering a vertically chalked blackboard, the chorus ‘We don’t need no education …’ comes to mind. A collection of objects, including an audio-cassette case alluding to Pink Floyd’s The Wall, is assembled on top. Metres of audio tape removed from its casing hang from the ceiling, its contents now recorded and stored elsewhere. A philosophical exegesis of the dark side of the 1980s is quickly grounded when you become aware of the sleek carpet in Mars grey, on which a small, wall-like structure is built with 2808 white Lego bricks.

Reflecting the importance of the process and exposing the raw economics of his cultural exchange, an accompanying text gives recognition to the people, places and histories from which meaning was derived and materials obtained: 70s London boutique store Seditionaries, eBay, Stockline Plastics, Prince and Princess of Wales Hospice, Susan Wilkinson, the Red Army Faction, and a tree on the Île de la Cité in Paris. The cost of each piece is neatly itemised, revealing both the skeleton and the flesh of an artistic political economy.

Modern Institute, Glasgow, until Sat 23 May

Michael Wilkinson: Lions After Slumber

  • 3 stars

Taking its references from both Shelley and post-punk group Scritti Politti, Glasgow-based artist Wilkinson's exhibition of photography and found images presents a philosophical exegisis of the dark side of the 1980s.


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