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'Co-operative Society.'

Exhibition dates: 8 July - 3 September 2005
Preview: Thursday 7 July 6:00 - 8:00pm

"All artists are alike. They dream of doing something that's more social, more collaborative, and more real than art." Dan Graham

"Man", Charles Darwin wrote, "is a strictly social animal." Five artists reveal new bodies of work, which examine what it might mean to live in a 'co-operative society'.

John Askew presents a new photographic installation composed of 300 printed ceramic tiles lining sixteen square metres of the gallery floor. When encountered at close range, we realise the tiles repeat and invert a single image of a boy into a brilliantly coloured pattern. Askew's work is a meditation on our relationship to photography in the gallery and as documentation; we are drawn between seeing the work as evidence, as a way of 'knowing' a world other than our own; and as an abstract, ornamental patterning.
Essay John-Askew.pdf|

John Askew, 'TV pictures' (detail), 2005, dye transfer prints on ceramic tiles
Julian Germain, Patricia Azevedo and Murilo Godoy have collaborated to present a series of photographs by street children of Brazil's third biggest city, Belo Horizonte. The children and teenagers took photographs with cameras provided by the artists to document their lives. The results reveal stories of another world, where co-operation is essential simply to survive. 
Essay Germain-Azevedo-Godoy.pdf|

Julian Germain, Patricia Azevedo, Murilo Godoy, and street children from Belo Horizonte, Brazil. From 'The Beautiful Horizon'
Rory Macbeth presents a diverse body of works united by the themes of ideals and utopias. The works include a burnt-out motorbike where each individual component has been chromed, converting scrap into an object of beauty and delight. Macbeth also shows a cartoonstyle fibreglass 'Thought Bubble' hanging above the viewer's head, guiding our imagination towards the stars.
Essay Rory-Macbeth.pdf|

Rory Macbeth, 'Thought Bubble, (oh god, (Nietzsche's Mum, (joke)))', 2004, fibreglass. Courtesy VTO gallery, London
Matt O'dell's sculptures and installations explore 'microsocieties' and groups who, tired with orthodox ideas, have forged their own belief systems. His model skyscraper depicts the prime Manhattan real estate owned by a religious cult. Using architectural models and audio, O'dell conjures alternative worlds which exist between fact and fiction.
Essay Matt-O-dell.pdf|

Matt O'dell, 'Heaven's Gate Cult, Rancho Santa Fe, California 1997', 2003-4, cardboard, paper, CD player, internet printouts, modelling details. Photography: Dave Morgan
Mathew Weir's exquisitely detailed paintings are based upon little-known sources including 18th century porcelain figurines. Each work is hung on hand-printed wallpaper covering the gallery from floor to ceiling, turning the gallery into a space akin to a museum or stately home. The figures, often based on works on display in English museums, seem to test how wide the gap might be between the ideals of the past and those of the present day.
Essay Mathew-Weir.pdf|

Mathew Weir, 'The Entertainers', 2004-5, oil on canvas. Courtesy Emily Tsingou Gallery, London.