Virtual Grizedale

Grizedale Arts
Blade Factory, Greenland Street
15th September – 26th November 2006

Reviewed by Adam Ford

Ok, so this is a joke, isn’t it? I only ask because if it is, no one at the Echo or on the net seems to have got it! All the talk is about art making a difference and ‘civic pride’, but surely, please, this is a wind-up! In which case it’s a good one, and worth a visit.

Liverpool in 2006 is suffocating under a blizzard of buzzwords and building sites, and Virtual Grizedale caricatures this superbly. There's far too much going on at this exhibition for me to do justice to it, but here's a small selection of our glorious future.

A community theatre is promised, starring 'Les Dennis and Harold Pinter'. Sprawling graphics highlight the supposed need for 'Integrated Aesthetics - Common Culture'. A 'postmodern henhouse' is all noise and no hens. A skater video has a Coldplay soundtrack. There is a CD which costs five pounds, with songs about deer; you are asked to 'please put money in sporran'. Thoughtfully, a sporran is provided.

In short, the new Liverpool/Egremont/Yourtown would be a place where ‘no one would sneer at the middle class and call them nts’ (sic), where there ‘would be free wireless broadband’.

To me, it seems like this spoof art meets regeneration presentation is meant to draw our attention to the real tragicomedy that is the preparations for Liverpool 2008. Decide for yourself at the Blade Factory or

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