MacLaurin Gallery, Ayr,
Nikolai Fine Art, New York
are a series of 20 large image juxtapositions made during a number of
project collaborations with friends in
ActUp and with hospitals in Milan and New York.
and systems. T-cell counts. Numbers. Categories. Spinal grids, cross sections,
tissues, membranes, lesions and incisions - images and fears not contained
by words. To classify and to label is to set out the cornerstones of medical
research and scientific investigation. Acronyms and systematisation reflect
the clinical means of ordering the chaos of disease. They distance the
fear and engineer our responses.
the studio, etherised upon a table, are the operating instruments and
props. Spotlights focus on a desultory mix: a shiny scalpel, some rusty
nails, nuts and bolts, inks and dyes, powered saffron and turmeric, blood-stained
swabs, reds and yellows - the colours of bruises and bloody wounds. Black,
red, green and yellow tints recall older histories of disease organised
into the four humours or biles.
fashions other images with more muted, subtler colours - seductive cosmetic
tones - laid out as in a retail display, metal X's and O's, the noughts
and crosses of idle times, leaving the trace of an X, the basic signature,
X marks pre-literacy, or a surgical incision, or a chromosome, a gender,
a social identity."
from 'Karl Grimes: Work in Process'. Circa, No 81.