The Surreal House – The Barbican
Always a bit of a hoot walking round a Dadaist or Surrealist show, as the Dadaists, especially, were anti-art, and hated the sort of conventions that gallery curators adhere to. These ‘shows’ should really reflect the work, with at least some attempt at anarchy and disruption. Instead, we get solemn environments, carefully lit to exude ‘seriousness’ and audiences guided through like the walking dead. It’s all so humourless. Give me Cabaret Voltaire, a little dangerous performance art or at least a laugh. The Dadaists and Surrealists would have swept through this ‘exhibition’ pissing on most of it, tearing it apart and cursing their legacy.
One bright spot was the tiny cinema, where we sat and watched Tati’s Mon Oncle. This is one strange film, with a messy soundtrack and anti-modernist sentiment. It’s only now that it seems surreal.