“That’s Grouse”.The British Show surveys the cross-media work of Linton Meagher. Showcasing works with international appeal, “That’s Grouse” The British Show playfully considers the construction of identity, touching upon motifs in contemporary pop culture.
“That’s Grouse” is an Australian colloquialism referring to something excellent or fantastic: this tongue-in-cheek exhibition is a mischievous exploration of cultural iconography that’s equally relevant in both Australia and the UK. Through a painstakingly repetitive artistic practice, Meagher moves familiar, functional objects into the realm of fine art, encouraging and challenging viewers to question their meaning for contemporary society. Constructed from hundreds of shotgun cartridges, bullet casings, imitation lipsticks and surgical scalpels, Meagher’s large three-dimensional drawings can be enjoyed on many levels, both visually and conceptually.
The marriage of disparate meanings and objects is a theme throughout Meagher’s work and is particularly evident as repellent objects such as bullets or surgical scalpels are transformed to portray beauty. Taking inspiration from Jeff Koons’ and Arman’s irreverent approach to art-making materials, Meagher’s practice often examines a symbolically loaded object, such as a shotgun cartridge (referencing both gun control issues in Australia and hunting heritage in the UK), and utilises its aesthetic appeal to encourage the viewer to reflect on the world around them.
“On the surface, these works are just fun, sensual and instantly engaging: with the shotgun cartridge works, the viewer is initially seduced by the beauty of the piece. However, it is hard to look past the death implied by all the empty cartridges. They force the viewer to ponder the economics of the endless pursuit of thrills and beauty. These works are also an extension of the artistic tradition of exploring mass consumerism and the use of ready-made objects in art.”
St St James’s, SW1Y 6BN
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