Hayward Gallery

earlier today, i went to the hayward to see the shrigley exhibition – for some reason, i was unaware of the deller show running concurrently, but was entranced by how each show influenced the other.

both deller and shrigley draw on the small features of the experience that is the everyday, to elucidate the more complex facets of being a person/human amongst persons/humans. there feels to be an organic process with deller’s source material – as if something resonates within his person, so he subtley flags it up for you and me to ponder. and we recognise these things. and pondering yields understanding – whether this reflects deller’s own feelings/evocations or not does not seem to be important. a space has been created where a genuine personal response can be formed – that the work emerges from common experience, enables reality to be exposed as art, and art to be my reality.

despite common origin, shrigley’s work, in comparison, felt black and white, one linerish and slightly contrived. which is not to say that i did not appreciate it, but more to acknowledge the different way in which it operates, compared with deller’s fleshier, more human, complex, pensive, meatier, colourful way of engaging the viewer.

deller’s works, when placed in the white space, had a sense of being ‘gallerised’, as though herded in from the real to be left to stand anxiously and self consciously in an institution to which they were not accustomed. shrigley’s pieces slotted effortlessly into their position as art, secured and reiterated by location, plinths and frames. indeed, deller’s own assertion that ‘art isn’t about what you make but what you make happen’ was embodied by the fidget of his pieces in the hallowed halls of the hayward.

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