7 September to 21 October
The Really Wild Show is not the show that you think it is. There is a show, but Michaela Strachan isn’t presenting it and what on earth does it mean to be really wild anyway? Join us as we explore internet jungles, wild birds and exotic plants with Iain Griffin and his Really Wild Show.
Did you ever fall asleep listening to the sound of the jungle? Or do yoga to the noises of the rainforest? For this exhibition the artist places live potted plants with unspecified jungle clips from YouTube and a therapeutic soundtrack of wild birds and animals. It is one of many hundreds of jungle videos created to help viewers to relax and escape from their day to day lives.
There is some echo of the work of Henri Rousseau (1844 – 1910), best known for paintings set in exotic fantasy jungles, such as The Dream and Surprised Storm in the Forest. It was widely believed that Rousseau sourced his material first hand whilst on military service in Mexico. However, it is now clear that those suggestions were unfounded and that Rousseau had never been beyond the borders of France, never mind seen a rainforest. Rather, his primary sources for the scenes of his jungle paintings were plants from the Botanical Gardens in Paris.
At one time our indigenous plants were wild and “wilderness” probably didn’t exist before we named it. Griffin plays with these ideas without trying to provide answers. What he does reveal is a sense of what lies beneath the suspension of belief.