Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Running with scissors. Martin Creed at the Tate

martin creed runner at the tate
Every single time I visit the public art gallery I think I overhear another visitor asking the perennial question of the modern age - 'Call that art?'

The Tate Gallery has a new installation in place - though 'in place' might be understating the case. Every day, for four months an athlete will sprint 86 metres through Tate Britain’s central Duveens Galleries. Then a 30 second pause. Then another runner will burst from the blocks.

The work is by Martin Creed. He is notorious for winning the prestigious Turner Prize in 2001 with a light bulb which was switched on and of like a …well, a light bulb I suppose.

The current piece is enigmatically titled Work No. 850. An enigmatic title is half the game. Creed talks about 'An art gallery is a theatre for looking at things,'.
Hmm… profound title, curiously inarticulate rationale. But let's not let reason get in the way of expression. More importantly I hope the visitors don't get in the way of the runners - it's all fun and games until someone gets hurt.

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