David Shrigley the city planner

I saw the David Shrigley exhibition at London’s Hayward Gallery yesterday. Shrigley is best know for his drawings – whimsical and charming and yet with a bite. But there is just more than just these at the exhibition – strange objects and animations, and also an untitled installation that fills half a room. Made of some black stuff, it consists of elements that look nothing like people, but have a definite human quality, and other elements – long tubes, spheres and a kind of exploded spidery mass – that look nothing like most buildings but feel like buildings.

The impression is that definitely that you are looking at a city, where some areas are calm and harmonious, others are bustling and others rather menacing. It is a worthwhile reminder that our cities depend not so much on the details of architecture as on the disposition of buildings, on the spaces between them and on the people who occupy those spaces and the ways in which they behave. Maybe some urban designer should offer a role to Shrigley?

If you do make it to the exhibition, it is worth finding time for the Jeremy Deller display that is downstairs. Also fascinating in a different way.







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