Exhibition of GSA graduates who've been recognised by the Turner Prize struggles to be more than a PR campaign
All the artists featured in the Royal Glasgow Institute's (RGI) show at the Kelly Gallery are graduates of the Glasgow School of Art and have gone on to win or be nominated for the Turner Prize. Curated by Adrian Wiszniewski and Sam Ainsley, who taught many of these artists as students, the show reads like a straight-up publicity drive for the GSA. Other than the Turner Prize, there is no narrative or thematic connection between the works, which though sparkling clean and shiny, seem to sigh with resignation at being shoehorned into another group exhibition in which artist's esteemed biographies are of more interest than the content of the work.
The grandiose statement found in the press release says 'this is the first time that the works have been exhibited together; many from private collections will allow an exclusive glimpse of the immense talent from GSA,' which seems a touch fur coat and nae knickers.
The RGI aims to promote artists at all stages of their careers through open exhibitions and sales opportunities, and gives much needed visibility and support to recent graduates. Though this show appears to be the exhibition equivalent of name-dropping, there is something for everybody. Works include David Shrigley's animation of a moth flying into a flame, Simon Starling's concept-driven car radiator and prints by Martin Boyce, Lim Lambie, Christine Borland and Ciara Phillips all available for purchase. Sales revenue is often essential for both galleries and artists, keeping studios running and gallery doors open, but if GSA hasn't directly funded this show as part of its PR campaign, it's getting a very good deal here.
Royal Glasgow Institute, Kelly Gallery, ended Sat 2 Nov.