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George Barber
His declared frustration, therefore, with much of what passes for current art practice and distaste at the machinery that surrounds it only enhances this subscription to the value of individual lives and stories, places where values can still be found, codes of meaning and worth. These lives might often seem defiantly mundane in packaging but, through closer scrutiny, Barber charges them with strong substance and emotion. This desire to honour and explore the incidents that might emerge from such territory finds creative form in his monologues, which take his opposition to structures of power into another formal realm. In his own words:

"Monologues therefore become a legitimate space. Bourgeois individualism aside, there is only one you; nobody can 'speak' you better than you. The viewer experiences a direct account of a creative person when as artist speaks in their own words. This doesn't necessarily follow on that individualism is the answer to everything but in a world of massive image making teams and corporations, the monologue is perhaps the equivalent of the hand-woven Persian rug. A welcome break in a sea of office grey carpet, the standard surface upon which 90% of all office workers tread...

"In a world filled with stainless steel, laminated glass and white, the monologue is a very British anti-IKEA attempt to bring back the tat. Those terrible untidy things that make a life and character quite unique: the ums and ahs, the strange facial expressions, the odd idiosyncratic voice, the curious preoccupations..."

This desire to soil the chrome and glass arcades of financial, media and political rule with messy, uncontainable human business, the unvoiced culmination perhaps of his semi-anarchic infant years wandering Georgetown (a neat and probably helpful synchronicity of names), reading the constant signs of the street as, later, he would scrutinise the smallest details of feature films for possible appropriation, is his take against restriction. Against the single narrative. Against the predicted outcome. Rather, he stands for the right to look askance and realign. For the free movement of images and individuals through the mediated world. For working beyond the market, but with its knockdown stock.

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