20 Dec

Oh dear: another day, another informant, another so-called art gallery with their hand out to artists for money: The Lloyd Gill Gallery. Although sketchy website design, rampant typos, bad syntax, dodgy. Punctuation And random Capitalisation are par for the course with these people, I fear in this case that the whole project may truly be the work of somebody who’s genuinely mentally unwell or somewhere on the autistic spectrum, so I can’t bring myself to be too harsh. For reasons that will become clear, I also fear that Mr Gill might pursue me with an axe like Jack Nicholson in The Shining. I’ll try to restrict myself to enumerating some of the reasons why I personally would not want anything to do with this gallery.

Reason 1. It’s in Weston-Super-Mare. I’ve nothing particularly against backwaters because I live in a backwater too, but I don’t delude myself that my living room is a commercial gallery.

Reason 2. This photo:

Fawlty Towers + HP Lovecraft = The League of Gentlemen <=> This picture of Lloyd Gill Gallery.  This is a local gallery for local people. Don’t touch or covet the precious things of the local gallery. The wonky writing on the sign is highly reminiscent of Basil Fawlty’s deranged follies and of the titles from the show, which every week featured a new, mischievous anagram of Fawlty Towers on the hotel’s sign. Here are my suggestions for LGG:








Reason 3. The “management” page has more unreasonable, draconian rules than North Korea. Probably three quarters of the text is legalese of dubious validity. They forbid deep linking (i.e. linking to anywhere but the home page). Hello, it’s the internet. The internet is made of links. If you don’t want your stuff linked to, looked at and subject to comment on the internet, don’t put it on the internet. They claim ownership of everything, while simultaneously denying all liability in case they happen to infringe anybody else’s rights. I’d call that trying to have your cake and eat somebody else’s.

Reason 4. They won’t warrant “that all information provided will be accurate.” Furthermore [they] “make no guarantee of any specific results from the use of our Services.” SEEMS LEGIT. This would seem to suggest that paying for your work to be shown there doesn’t necessarily guarantee that your work will be shown there, at least in the most literal interpretation of a stipulation that in any case probably doesn’t hold water legally in any developed country on Earth. “No part of this Web Site is intended to constitute advice and the Content of this Web Site should not be relied upon when making any decisions or taking any action of any kind.” No shit. That is good advice. Don’t make any decisions or take any action of any kind that would bring you into direct contact with this place.

Reason 5. There’s another massive disclaimer about paying them to show your work (also on the “management” page). What’s brilliant, though, is the bold but bonkers breakdown of what your £220 “management fee” actually buys. £106 for advertising “in excellent publications such as Aesthetica Magazine, Clifton Life”. Stop laughing, this is serious. £44 for invites. £46 for doing what they call PR. £9 for the website. BARGAIN. £12 for catalogue. £3 for wine. Shush, you snob, some excellent wines can be had for under £3 a bottle. Return of your work– and yea, even brown paper and bubble wrap– are free, hallelujah, Lloyd Gill is indeed beneficent.


Reason 6. I don’t know what a “network manager” is in this context, but LGG’s “network manager” is one Lou Reade. Gadzooks! It’s Lou Reed, but in ye olde Elizabethan times. Obviously Lloyd told Lou “hey babe, take a walk on the mild side… with me in Weston-Super-Mare.” And the coloured girls go don’t d-don’t, d-don’t don’t d-don’t, don’t d-don’t, d-don’t don’t d-don’t…


Reason 7. Lloyd Gill’s own art work is scary and a bit John Wayne Gacy-esque in some indefinable way, like the efforts above and below. Apparently he studied art, which just goes to show that you can lead a horse to water but you can’t make it drink. Gill, I mean, not Gacy. No clowns though (luckily), and Gill has yet to be immortalised in a lovely song by Sufjan Stevens.


Reason 8. If his Axis page is anything to go by, Lloyd Gill is worryingly obsessed with the George Romero zombie film Day of the Dead, although apparently not obsessed enough to know that he’s spelled a character’s name wrong in the descriptions for his paintings. Now, I probably like horror films more than is quite normal. I like zombies. I like grand guignol. I’d rather watch the worst zombie film than an above average straight drama. I even quite like this painting; it has a certain je ne sais quoi. In fact je really ne sais quoi le fuck is going on with these zombie paintings, but I kind of enjoy them in an outsider artist sort of way. But, you know… still crazy. Still wouldn’t want to give this guy £220 or have him choosing art work for an exhibition, though.

Reason 9. I will never pay anybody a fee for showing my work. You pay me for my work. I’ve said this countless times, but let’s try again for the benefit of the particularly dense: a professional artist is paid to make and/or exhibit their work, and/or they sell their work through legitimate channels, and/or they work to paid commission. A person who pays to have their art work shown is a hobbyist. Having a scalpel doesn’t make you a surgeon, having a wrench doesn’t make you an engineer, and having a paint brush doesn’t make you an artist. If nobody else wants to show your work then I suggest you put your own little exhibition on. Ask your friends and family around to see it and have a few drinks. That’s all LLG and their like seem to be doing for you anyway and that’s fine, good luck to you. The point is, you can do a thing like that without lining anybody else’s pockets. You think an advert in Aesthetica (and don’t even get me started on that magazine) means you’ve arrived in the art world? Sorry, no. You could place an ad, as well, if you wanted to and had the money.  Anyone can, so why don’t you? Just to spite them, save up and buy a fuck off gigantic advert in Frieze about art work that nobody at Frieze would ever consider writing about.

Reason 10. The LGG site says “Interns: Rebecca”. They have interns? Why? Are they all called Rebecca? Do they have to be called Rebecca in order to be considered? Or is Rebecca playing the role of all the interns by changing her wig, putting on glasses, and so forth, like Cindy Sherman? Is she like Prince or Madonna and only has one name? Is this a reference to Hitchcock, is she a ghost, is the first Mrs De Winter’s body hidden away somewhere off the coast of Weston-Super-Mare?



  1. anonymousartist2012 20/12/2012 at 4:54 PM #

    You forgot to mention Maria Aparaci’s latest botox fix makes her forehead look rather like that of a weirwolf..

    • Alistair 20/12/2012 at 5:07 PM #

      She was also lucky not to inherit her daughter’s nose.

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