A Barbarous Intensity


Venue: Project Room, Glasgow, UK

Date: 2011


Photography: Max Slaven & Darren Tesar


An accompanying exhibition text can be found here



Artworks (in no particular order)


First Ode:

Nanga Parbat Pilgrimage (Hermann Buhl)

HD Video Projection



“Everything I touched came away.  It seemed too great a risk, for one small slide or fall would be the finish of me, and I should certainly drag with me my companion and friend, non-existent though he be...  I had to exert extreme care every foot of the way down.  The whole of this time my companion was with me, that staunch companion whom I never saw, and whose presence was more definite in danger spots.  The feeling calmed me, lulled me into security: I knew that if I slipped or fell, this ‘other man’ would hold me on the rope.  But there was no rope; there was no other man.”


- Hermann Buhl, Mountaineer


Second Ode:

Storm Catcher (Richard Tesar)

Dream catcher crafted by Roger Tesar


“I called it ‘Storm Catcher’ because the damn thing almost blew over my tipi.  You see I decided to bring it down from the cabin and hang it up in the tipi at the Prairie Rendezvous for something different. As soon as I brought it down off the hill it stormed so goddamned bad that the winds almost blew my lodge over...  it sure as hell doesn’t bring dreams!”


-Richard Tesar, Artist’s Father


Third Ode:

Already After (Ann Bancroft)

Cathouse, blanket, cat toys


“It startled me, because there was a flood of emotion with it, because it was so strong, and almost unmistakable, and it was good medicine, it was what I needed.  It worked, whatever it was...  I was accepting the feeling and the sense of presence.”


- Ann Bancroft, Deep Sea Diver


Fourth Ode:

Head Explosion

Temporary tattoos on watercolour paper


Fifth Ode:

The Grottoes

Termite infested  wood


Sixth Ode:

Tongue (John Milius)

Commissioned silicon tongue


“He (Robert E. Howard) was convinced that the town wanted to exterminate him and this kind of thing and he would go home and board up his windows and load his rifles; you know, a complete nut.  But the best part is he’s alone one night and he feels a shadow overtake him from behind and he knows that Conan is standing behind him with a large axe and Conan tells him  ‘Just stay there and write and if you don’t do exactly what I tell you I am going to cleave you down the middle’.  And so he is so terrified because Conan just exuded such power and fear and he could just see the axe glinting in his peripheral vision, you know, that he just writes all night.  And of course with the coming of dawn he turns around finally and Conan is gone.  So he falls upon the floor completely spent and he realizes: ‘I only have to sleep for a few hours because then I must fortify myself, for when darkness comes again, so will Conan…’  And of course Conan did.  He wrote almost all these stories in this very short period of time because Conan was standing over him with an axe.”


- John Milius, Film Director


Seventh Ode:

The Relics

Artist’s T-shirt collar soaked in resin