Disruptive art: Liam Gillick explores collective tensions at Maureen Paley
Liam Gillick is an artist of context. His life’s works have strayed from the ivory tower of autonomy and made the assertion that everything is part of something; that you can’t see the one without understanding the whole.
His latest exhibition is based on anthropologist Mary Douglas and sociologist Ludwik Fleck’s assertion that ’an isolated investigator without bias and tradition, without forces of mental society acting upon him, and without the effect of the evolution of that society, would be blind and thoughtless’.
’The Thought Style Meets the Thought Collective’ is a sharp look at the way tensions and cohesion arise and diminish through the group production of creative work. Placed in Maureen Paley’s gallery in Bethnal Green – itself a Mecca for disruptive art – the pieces on show span some of Gillick’s collectively-produced work from the 1990s and new pieces he’s crafted himself. Wander the works of one of the original YBAs and pick up his new book From Nineteen Ninety A To Nineteen Ninety D – a selected survey of the artist’s groundbreaking projects, installations, methods, and practices. A solid chance to see the progression of a little piece of art history.