The bright, white five-galleried space of Hauser & Wirth Somerset
, an inspiring blend of old and new, could arguably house most artistic endeavours but the latest show from Martin Creed, What You Find, is the one that works the best so far.
The Turner prize winning artist, known for filling whole rooms with white balloons (Half the air in a given space), often chooses materials he already has for his source of inspiration. What you have here then, is the artist himself as installation, there’s even a glass cabinet filled with a nest of his own hair (he cuts it himself).
The viewer is left to make up his own mind about the themes behind the exhibition, all Creed offers in the way of explanation is this rather esoteric quote: "You find yourself here in this world with feelings and thoughts. It’s difficult to accept what you find you do. But if you can it seems to help.’
Let’s just say that the basic message seems to be we all have far too much stuff and Creed hoards more of it than any of us.
So you have hundreds of plastic bags, retrieved from under his sink, and now dangling artfully from a tree in the courtyard. You have a pile of rubbish, removed piece by piece from his flat and reconstructed in its entirety in the corner of the gallery. You have a collection of his old cars and a hippy bus (main image) and hanging behind it a rather beautiful Pollock inspired drip painting.
The exhibition What You Find is a crowd-pleasing fun monster but beneath it Creed’s political anger is also clear to see. There are two videos about immigration, Work No 2533 Border Control (he numbers every piece) and Work No 2530 Let Them In.
My favourite piece is a video installation of the artist singing (he's also in a band with a new album out) the memorable chorus, ‘I’m a victim, you’re a victim,’ and wearing an ever-changing collection of his own clothes including a kilt, a dress, a 70s trouser suit. You get the picture. Creed paints, sings, sculpts, collects and redefines quirkiness and artistic angst. It’s a great show in exactly the right space. You’ll like it.
Martin Creed What You Find at Hauser & Wirth Somerset til 11 September 2016.