Preposterous tales

Archie Salandin

25th August to 5th October 2012
The Stapleton Road Tavern Window Commission

Archie Salandin consistently works with language and meaning. His artworks take the form of sculpture, books and performative photography. Salandin’s preoccupation with language mainly lies in the region of words that are overused or meaningless. He has found ways to try and liberate these words from their everyday use by giving them new meaning or celebrating their meaninglessness, drawing attention so that a viewer may look at them in a different way. He engages with how language interacts with its surroundings, how he can manipulate or draw attention to words or phrases to make people consider where they are, what they are doing subconsciously, and more importantly what they are doing subconsciously. The focus of this strand of his arts practice is located in small talk and conversation often imitating people and how they might interact at a social event. In such works, there is no question, and no expected answer, just like small talk each statement is a one-way conversation.

For Stapleton Road Tavern’s latest window commission Salandin has produced a series of signs displaying unrealistic (and sometimes comic) boasts. This installation plays upon the traditional pub culture of ‘bragging to the locals’, and commemorates the unique characters that you only ever meet in pubs. It references conversation that is projected towards you as an unsuspecting victim of people who may have potentially had a little too much to drink. Salandin describes his artwork not a critique of this phenomenon, more a celebration of it. Here his text-signs are shown amongst the four windows, as if the windows were talking at each other. However, due to the nature of its content, the text does not quite flow, mimicking how a lot of conversation of this type happens. In Preposterous tales Salandin gives inanimate objects the characteristics of humans, providing the windows themselves voices as if they are talking to each other. Using text to represent this conversation, rather than pictures, allows the viewer to see past the people and focus on the nature of what is being said.

Visit Archie's website here: www.archiesalandin.com