tate st ives dalwood cornwall

dexter dalwood 'immersion' at the tate st ives

During the is-it-art-or-is-it-simply-a-red-splodge-type debates, I have been known to find myself marooned on the side of the red splodge – perhaps due to a fact-finding journalistic background.

This is why I found the Dexter Dalwood exhibition, currently showing at the Tate St Ives (until 3 May), so engaging. Working at the junction of history and art, Dalwood produces large-scale works that recreate key historical events, celebrity deaths (Sid and Nancy, Janis Joplin) and an array of imagined celebrity bedrooms (Michael Jackson, Jimi Hendrix).

Highlights: Bill Gates’ orderly bedroom; the sinister depiction of the unsuccessful Bay of Pigs invasion of Cuba in 1961; and ‘Immersion’, portraying Jeff Buckley’s death in 1997 – he drowned during a night-time swim in the Mississippi.

Bonus: the Tate is free to Cornish residents in March 2010; bring proof of address.

This gives me an excuse to post a tangental link to Buckley singing ‘Hallelujah’.