07 December 2009


The Shilo project at the Ian Potter Gallery is based on Neil Diamond’s classic 1970 album, the cover of which features a connect-the-dots portrait of Diamond for fans to complete.  It's a kaleidoscopic exhibition of art and record sleeves while also it poses conceptual challenges to artists. The original sleeve promises an image of Neil Diamond but doesn't deliver: When is a portrait not a portrait? Completing the puzzle reveals the portrait but may trash the sleeve.  The curator of the exhibition came across a sleeve of the album at a garage sale, with the dots joined up, and decided to give a range of artists the chance to interpret the image beneath.  Personally I love Neil Diamond (yes, if you're squirming, your loss). I love the nostalgic feelings that this album invokes, and the fact that maturity or a need to join the "I hate Neil Diamond Club" hasn't affected these feelings.