David Glass, Glasseye and Pierrot in Love

Review in Issue 5-2 | Summer 1993

I have yet to achieve full spectorial mastery over David's work. In his constant urge to be different he falls into the trap of being the same. You know that what you see will be twisted, the dark side of imagination, reflections in a cracked mirror. The first part of the programme, Glasseye, was, to follow David's eponymous lead, more like Glassroom exercises. Really, what am I expected to get out of watching two bits of folded paper fall in love? What does that tell me about life or art or folded paper? A pair of talking feet did nothing for me, and a large sheet of extremely boring tin, less so. Nor did a disturbing, repulsive, dribbling tongue powdered face. A bit like those freak shows that display two-headed sheep in pickle jars. So what? Curiosities at best, but ultimately pointless. David often confuses virtuosity with dramatic theatre.

But – Pierrot in Love is a kettle of a different colour. For me it has the possibility of being a really new departure. It could be lyrical, it could be dramatic without being a nightmare. In the end it is a series of extended jokes, with one penultimate hugely funny idea. But any time he runs the risk of being genuinely serious he laughs at himself dismissively, which is annoying. He reanimates Charlie Chaplin's bread-roll ballet, does a bit of over-long, self-indulgent, not very good and dramatically unmotivated dance. And the final denouement is back to the cracked Glass. A pity, he shows what he could do with the idea but relies on his usual formula.

David is very talented and very frustrating in equal proportion. A new departure for him would be to do something dramatic, lyrical or funny that doesn't want to make you run out into the middle of Spaghetti Junction in rush hour for a breath of fresh air. That would be more challenging to him than constantly exploring the same side of himself, interspersed with bits of Music Hall virtuosity. I am still waiting for him to find a vehicle worthy of his talents. He gives hints of it here.

Presenting Artists
Presenting Venue
Date Seen
  1. Feb 1993

This article in the magazine

Issue 5-2
p. 15