The Brownlee Brothers’ work celebrates the ordinary made extraordinary. Their formative years were spent helping their parents run the family business – the pub. Their early heights took them below the bar. It was here they began to notice the detail. Out of sight they recorded the motifs and emblems of the drink culture. Simple caricatures surrounded them. Timeless youths on cans -smiling camels on cigarettes – dapper peanuts displayed on snacks.
Mixed with the crude graffiti and idle threats of the Ladies and Gents – this contrasting visual culture introduced the brothers to a world hidden from the outside and frequented by people who shared its cloak.
It was this contrast that enthralled the brothers and liberated them to explore and record the exploits of their immediate community. Peacock Visual Arts and W OR M present recent works and new print publications from this territory. Alongside the elegiac – Water, Bread and Wine prints, the Dundee Shuffle re-presents the generic betting slip as poem.
A quick online search of the term reveals, “on first hearing, the Dundee Shuffle might sound like an antiquated dance step or an ironic term for the shambolic gait of modern day drunks or junkies. But it is nothing of the sort. It happens to be one of the most pointlessly complicated bets ever invented.”
Perhaps this sense of the absurd led the Brownlee’s to the exhibition’s title Void Bet. When a bet is voided it is essentially as if it never happened. You don’t win anything but equally you don’t lose anything and the bet is entirely null, and, well, void. Gambling is bound up with the human condition but in this instance a paradox is created. The brothers help subvert ancient wisdom to modern riddle, by simply pointing out what we have always known but pay little heed to – that you will only beat the Bookie by not taking part.
‘Void Bet’ opens in W OR M on Friday 10th August and runs until 2nd September 2018.
We will also be providing a Risograph workshop centred on the exhibition.
The session begins with a tour of their exhibition ‘Void Bet’ which is being showcased at the W OR M from the 10th August until the 8th of September.
Use the Risograph machine and collaborate with the brothers, combining your images and drawings with theirs and create something extraordinary, out of the ordinary. At the end of the session, you will leave with 30 prints.
To book the Thursday 16th August class click here
To book the Saturday 18th August class click here