Joanne Tatham and Tom O'Sullivan – A Tool for the Making of Signs at Cardiff's Chapter

By Culture24 Reporter | 24 January 2013

Exhibition preview: Joanne Tatham and Tom O'Sullivan – A Tool for the Making of Signs, Chapter, Cardiff, until February 24 2013

A photo of a large square white sculpture on a black and white plinth resembling a dragon
Joanne Tatham and Tom O'Sullivan, A Tool for the Making of Signs© Chapter Gallery, courtesy Joanne Tatham and Tom O'Sullivan
The last time we reported on Joanne Tatham and Tom O'Sullivan, the Glasgow School of Art protégés were reframing the city’s CCA with the help of chunks of a black and white version of the Loch Ness Monster, a typically memorable intervention in a show labeled Direct Serious Action Is Therefore Necessary.

Several fun-filled outings later, they’re bringing sculpture, painting, architecture, literature, “institutional critique” and elements of performance to Cardiff, rethinking a jumble of images, phrases and forms in a bid to explore the art world and its entwined mythological backdrop.

A central work again dominates – this time, their structure juts awkwardly against the overarching architecture. It’s formed in the symbol of the Welsh dragon, but also shoots off on tangential, primal meanings under the watch of the duo, as well as providing an analogy and counterpoint to two accompanying works by painter and modernist poet David Jones, integrated into the structure itself.

This merging of past and present practices allows Tatham and O’Sullivan to turn their wry style to a consideration of the relationship between contemporary and bygone artists. With almost 20 years of playfulness to their own careers, the pair show no signs of narrowing their sights.

  • Open 12pm-6pm (8pm Thursday and Friday, closed Monday). Admission free. Follow the gallery on Twitter @chaptertweets.
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