We welcome guest blogger Milo Adler-Gilles and his Glasgow contributions:
Glasgow’s weather gods really smiled on Laresa Kosloff and Andy Thomson’s project ‘The Green Text.’ The Partickhill Bowling Club suffered no more than a total 30 minutes of rain scattered across the five hours of the work. This was, we are reliably informed, as spring as things get.
The bowlers were out in force, many of them not Partickhill club members but drawn from the broader Glasgow bowls scene. For some bowlers, it was a reunion after years apart.
The artists told us that club memebership is diminishing and the jolly, ello ello styled advertisements for ‘Have-a-Go-Day’ made it clear. But when the two teams took to the green, it was difficult to discern. A group of older people laughing and enjoying themselves together in a manner that was a pleasure to be able to observe. Laresa and Andy’s text was presented in the voices of the fictional lawn-bowls experts Dr. Lindsey Fischer-Price and Alistair McLeod who also have sidelines in Ancient Greek natural science, contemporary continental philosophy and British history. The droll text, which the viewer hears via headphones, ranges wildly. It was not uncommon, looking around the perimeter of the green, to see a smirk or a chuckle on the face of a viewer.
As the commentators banter strayed from the game, the question of what is this construct of the game, its rules, traditions and required skill, were able to riff and ponder a broader range of intellectual concerns. Was the game a manner in which to think through ideas or simply another human way to whittle away at time, another form of light quirky chatter, as one our commentators puts it, “in the face of our inevitable demise”? Or a profound, balletic drawing of arcs and tilts…sculptural and performative nodding towards the coloured ball arrangements of conceptualists Baldessari and co. On the green this matters little probably, but the tea and sandwiches were great and the day ambled along with the pleasant sound of colliding bowls and friendly banter.