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La Gallerie dans ma Poche

It’s been a while since the domestic Bert & Ganddie gallery drew its net curtains to the public. Gallant Ganddie diligently poked around for a vacant space for a new project, all the while encountering the usual problems with finding funding and time to invidulate exhibitions. The solution was staring him in the face; his left-hand jacket pocket is always empty. La Gallerie dans ma Poche is the result. “The reason my left pocket is a disused space is that I have never had a left arm. This is obvious to some, but not to strangers. I don’t want it to sound like I’m selling the gallery on that. It just made perfect sense to use the space.” Ganddie has undeniably stumbled upon a winning formula. Unlike the majority of artist-run spaces, his is genuinely financially independent and completely nomadic. Where Ganddie goes, his gallery is sure to follow, creating no cost opportunities for exposing the best Mancunian art around local pubs, other people’s openings and out of town. This idiosyncratic, parasitic approach is a perfect way of avoiding dreary form filling, sugar coated art empires and sabre-toothed corporate philanthropy. Ganndie took his omnipresent gallery around London in September and plans to feature it as part of Flourish Nights, a series of performance evenings organised by artist Lucy McKenzie in Glasgow. The curator has already received a string of proposals for future exhibitions. Currently, he plans to show the work of Edinburgh sculptor John Mullen and Manchester artists Ryan Gander and Oliver East. The inaugural show, running from the 10th of September to the 12th of October, features Jim Medway’s very sugary home-made cola bottles, all painstakingly cut out by hand, a thrifty DIY riposte to rip-off multiplex culture. Ganddie also satirises corporate art marketing, embroidering the inside flap of his suit jacket with the gallery’s courtly hand-written moniker, conveying all the panache of a fin de siecle boudoir. Medway’s sweetie treat is designed to tempt Ganddie to consume the show as it hits the streets, destroying his curatorial reputation. “When you propose something like this to an artist”, says Ganddie, “it’s really good to see how everybody immediately tries to oppose or break the rules in some way. Jim’s handle on it was to respond to me as the curator, which is great.”

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