Trainer Monument (Prototype)

Static Gallery, Roscoe Street
Until 30th May 2009

Reviewed by Paul Cassidy

Can Altay’s prototype ‘monument’ invites the public to come forth and involve themselves in the ideas it represents, ideas which are directly influenced by the city's very own trainer culture (Altay cites Dave Hewitson’s The Liverpool Boys Are In Town as a direct influence). The monument is situated outside the Static Gallery and you may, as I did, walk straight past it, in which case you will have to do what we never seem to do; look up. Upon performing such an unfamiliar act you will be greeted by a metal frame of roughly fourteen feet, holding in place a series of wires. Dangling precariously from these wires by their laces are all manner of ‘trainees’, from the obviously well-worn to the seemingly brand new (try not to hang anything too expensive there however as two pairs have already vanished). Instantly regretting not bringing my own pair, I realised the sheer fun just waiting to be generated by the attempt to entangle a pair, all of which is recorded and streamed live on the gallery's website by a nearby camera.

Altay’s idea is an innovative one which both reacts to - and deals well with - the environment in which it is situated. Trainers are an important part of scouse culture, as they tie in closely to the city's reputable football scene. In this manner, Altay’s monument bridges the gap between art and the stereotypically uninterested ‘Average Joe’ in a very un-average way; everyone has an old pair of trainers hanging around somewhere. Such universality is a testament to the accessibility of Altay’s ideas; anyone is in a position to contribute regardless of their level of interest in art.

The monument is in place until the 30th May, so grab your trainers and get a move on.

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Comment left by Adarsh on 7th September, 2009 at 15:40