The Skat Players
09 Mar - 06 Apr 2008
Preview: Saturday 8th March, 6 - 8.30pm
Curated by Sarah McCrory
The idea of the grotesque only exists if it inhabits and breaks free from a body that contains it, either literally or metaphorically.
This exhibition explores elements of that disruption through works that embody different aspects of the grotesque such as the Rabelaisian celebration of excess of the body. Soviet literary theorist Mikhail Bahktin’s critique of 16th Century writer Francois Rabelais discusses the grotesque and the carnivalesque, and focuses on the coarseness and extravagance of human nature, and the corruption of the classical body; a representation of order and the establishment.
The title is taken from a 1920 painting by Otto Dix, in which the German card game Skat is played by grotesque ‘war-cripples’. In this case the title has been appropriated to refer to the rules of the game Skat and the scatological connection of the term.
The exhibition features the work of Charles Atlas, Spartacus Chetwynd, Kitty Kraus, Manuela Leinhoß, Sol LeWitt, John McCracken, Dawn Mellor, John Miller, Carter Mull, Sterling Ruby, Jill Spector and Jannis Varelas.