SELECTED PRESS LIST
China Daily ‘Intimate Transgressions: More than just pain’ 29/10/15
Sinovision ‘…Sexual Violence as a Weapon of War’ 08/09/15
BBC London News ‘Bright Old Things’ 08/01/15
Creative Review ‘Retirement Renaissance’ 08/01/15
The Independent ‘Still got it’ 06/01/15
DazedDigital ‘Bright Old Things’ 08/01/15
i-d.vice.com ‘Bright Old Things’ 08/01/15
The Telegraph ‘New talent blooms in the university of life’ 06/01/15
Style Bubble -Susie Bubble ‘Bright Old Things’ 08/01/15
125 Magazine ‘The Origins of Man’ issue 17 Mar 2011
Gallery SPB magazine (Russia) ‘The Embassy’ Oct 2010
125 Magazine ‘Introducing’ issue 11 Mar 2008
GQ Magazine ‘Men of the Year 2007’ (cover artwork) Oct 2007
Evening Standard ‘Talent Spotting Future Art Stars’ 31/05/07
The Spectator ‘Inspiration to Young Artists’ 26/05/07
The Times ‘Meet the Young at Art’ 26/05/07
The Guardian ‘Pick of the Week Michael Lisle-Taylor…’ 26/05/07
The Times ‘My space -Rankin’ 24/05/11
The London Paper ‘Martial Art’ 22/05/07
The Independent ‘What New Sensations…’ 16/05/07
The Telegraph ‘a Taste for new Talent’ 08/05/07
Interview: 125 MAGAZINE 51 THE ORIGINS OF MAN Perry Curties
The world of the fine artist is a private, secluded affair, and we are rarely privy to the inner workings of the process or the progress of an unfinished work, but 125 was granted exclusive behind the scenes access to one of the UK’s most exciting young sculptors and spent a day talking about a project that encompasses God, creation, humanity and…cider.
In a cramped and dusty studio in a crumbling industrial estate in one of the least attractive corners of London, Michael-Lisle Taylor is creating a piece of art which takes as its inspiration themes of such religious and historical magnitude that the sprawling concrete factory and derelict tram shed just outside the window seem to disappear. This is because, from this inauspicious location, Lisle-Taylor is travelling through time in an effort to discover the connections we still share with the first of our species.
A couple of years ago, while on an excursion around the preserved concentration camps of the Nazi regime, Lisle-Taylor observed the odd juxtaposition of farmers working in orchards within meters of what would once have been land infused with the ashes of obliterated human beings. Initially titled Genocider, Lisle-Taylor conceived a vague project in which apples from the fields around places of mass death would be harvested to make bottles of cider for exhibition. However, his initial research into apples and the farming process quickly presented far larger possibilities; in fact, an hour in Lisle-Taylor’s company is akin to a horticultural seminar on seed propagation. Did you know that a particular variety of apple (let’s take Granny Smiths) can only be grown from a cutting of the original grafted to the root of another plant? Seeds grown alone produce a new variety of apple tree, not Granny’s, and it is this horticultural phenomenon which is at the heart of the work he is currently calling The Origins of Man. Artists are traditionally reluctant about placing meaning on their work. There is always a starting point, always a meaning, but it’s rare for an artist to completely open up and explain what’s going on; they like to let us guess. Perhaps when this piece (or pieces, as we will soon discover) is ready for its final presentation, Lisle-Taylor may recede and allow the work to speak for itself. For now though, he is at a crossroads – quite literally – and one feels that discussing the work is an important part of the process for him. In fact, Lisle-Taylor’s work is almost entirely about the process and in many cases an actual journey. He would describe himself as a sculptor, but to accurately discuss his work perhaps performance sculptor or travel sculptor would be a better phrase. To completely understand the huge scope of the work he is currently producing we should take a look at his back story, because Lisle-Taylor is an interesting man – a recently retired naval engineer turned artist, who has an understandable penchant for military regalia and for taking his art on trips…
As a boy growing up in rural South Wales, young Michael was interested in BMXs and taxidermy, often stopping the family car to retrieve a fresh piece of road kill for reanimation. He confesses that after reading the Wasp Factory, in later life he couldn’t help but notice the similarities between himself and the book’s main character. Unfortunately, none of his early stuffed rabbits made it beyond the natural lifespan of an unpreserved carcass, but the act of dressing a rudimentary clay animal in some other creatures coat has a direct link to his later work; more of that to come. As an undiagnosed dyslexic, Lisle-Taylor struggled with school and graduated without any qualifications before attempting an A-level in Art, but quickly found his way into the Navy’s Fleet Air Arm aged 17, where he became an engineer maintaining helicopters and the iconic Harrier jet. This was, by all accounts, a happy period where he was able to hone the metalworking and craft skills crucial to his art. One might assume that 13 years in the Navy would be a stifling environment for someone with artistic pretensions but he mentions the period of peace through which he worked as an imaginary war, where it was essential to suspend reality and think creatively. The military life is evident in all of Lisle-Taylor’s work, which includes uniforms, flags and maps alongside ideas of conflict and movement. In fact, it may be possible to distil his work into three key areas: conflict, (uni)form and movement.
It may seem clichéd to mention conflict when discussing the work of an artist with a military background but the armed forces only appear in Lisle-Taylor’s work as icons. Admittedly, during our interview, the military is a heavily discussed topic but the true conflict is the action recorded in his art; a Lisle-Taylor piece often contains two elements fighting with each other. The frequent (and popular) uniform pieces he produces more often than not consist of a uniform and a canvas sheet forced to share the same space by his sewing machine – the almost life-size, sloping boxing ring of 2006’s ‘Tournament of the Dirty Nurse’ was inspired by the record of a boxing match preserved on the canvas of an actual boxing ring – and almost all of Lisle-Taylor’s work has had to travel or move to gain experience and reach a conclusion before arriving in the gallery. The earliest example of this would be ‘Fat Bitch’, an animal-fat sculpture sat on a grid through which it gradually melted, whilst the aforementioned boxing ring had to be airlifted to the Brecon Beacons by the Marines before it gained the necessary life experience for exhibition at his RCA show, and let’s not forget the death-trap qualities of ‘Maiden Voyage’, a homemade submarine which Lisle-Taylor felt compelled to
risk life and limb inside before it entered his debut solo show in 2007. A Lisle-Taylor piece can also be identified by meticulous detail and delicate craft. His uniform pieces are an intricate patchwork of stitching that is easy to dismiss at a distance; his flag works are housed in intricate hinged cases and the larger metal structures demonstrate a surprising lightness of touch. Petty Officer Lisle-Taylor honed all of these skills thanks to the rigorous demands of the Ministry of Defence. So, back to the present day. Lisle-Taylor is five years into his professional career, and though the heady days of Charles Saatchi snapping up graduate collections are long gone, Lisle-Taylor is a Saatchi owned YBA. It’s a moment and a moniker he quite rightly plays down. Lisle-Taylor, a husband and father to two young girls, is realistic about his work; he knows the uniforms sell and he produces a new one each year, but he is now moving into new territory and new ideas which bring us back to the current project – The Origins of Man. This is probably the first piece of work where conflict and the military are not immediately noticeable, although it is still a work in progress so perhaps they’ll slip in later. As mentioned, the idea grew out of initial research into apples and their propagation methods which make it possible to trace the ancestry of every apple variety back to one original source. Believe it or not, there is a species of wild apple indigenous to Central Asia which is proven to be the sole ancestor of all apples, known scientifically as Malus Sieversii. ‘It is the progenitor species of the 7,500+ other known apple cultivars worldwide’ explains Lisle-Taylor. ‘They grow principally in the remnants of primeval forests on the foothills of the Tien Shan Mountains (Celestial Mountains), bordering South Eastern Kazakhstan and China’. The starting point of Lisle-Taylor’s work is based around the assumption that ‘this evidence presents us with a geographical position for the birthplace of the forbidden fruit and gives us access to the immediate genetic descendants of the apples from the Tree of Knowledge…and carries as much weight as any of the other hypothesis adopted in the eternal quest to find Eden.’
Which all sounds very slick, but how does it translate into a work of art? Well, so far there are two main elements in production – Diaspora and Monogenesis – but in truth this could grow into many more as new theories present themselves. Diaspora has already seen Lisle-Taylor travel to Kazakhstan to pick the Malus Sieversii fruit, take clippings and buy seeds from a delighted, if slightly bemused farming population… ‘I tried ordering Kazakhstani apples from my local market but they just laughed at me’. A key element of the Diaspora project is a map of Kazakhstan; framed in a similar fashion to the 2007 Blood, Sweat and Freckles flag piece, it stands around eight feet tall and has the key apple growing areas marked on its Perspex surface (a nod to military briefing maps which can be written on, then wiped clean). It also has a huge black polygon shape covering a central section, the site of the Soviet Union’s Semipalatinsk nuclear test site (an area the size of Wales), which contaminated vast swathes of the region (we’re back to genocide again). When talking to Lisle-Taylor, it’s clear that some of the dots are yet to be joined, but the concept is growing and changing by the day. One feels that mankind’s destruction of its environment and itself is central to the work but hasn’t yet fully emerged. Anyway, apples-in-hand, Lisle-Taylor returned to the UK to begin the slow and difficult process of grafting and growing his Eden apples for the second stage of the process. Creating cider with the forbidden fruit is central to the entire piece; in fact, it’s the initial idea that the work revolves around, and Lisle-Taylor expands thus. ‘Would the forbidden fruit of the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil be as illicit, if it lay part decaying and fermenting in its own juices at the foot of the great tree? It would unquestionably have lost much of its essence as an object of desire... Perhaps this was a loophole in the holy decree “Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it lest ye die”’. Is the decaying, fermenting apple a metaphor for the abuse of God’s fruit by drunken man, or simply an elegant method of transportation from the foothills of Kazakhstan to our primitive ancestors? Either way, it leads us neatly into the cider element of the project – the pressing, the fermenting and the bottling. These rather practical elements and the tools used are in fact the main sculptures in the artwork; Lisle-Taylor has built an apple press with the same craftsman-like details employed in much of his early work. It’s a beautiful wooden contraption which in true Lisle-Taylor fashion is not worthy of exhibition until it has been used in anger, in this case to press apples from Kazakhstan, extracting and growing seeds in his own orchard. The final act is the cider itself, bottled and presented in perfect uniformity, the ultimate art journey, each a perfectly presented sculpture which quite literally contains the results of the artist’s imagination, labour and technique. The bottles of cider are an elegant answer to a complicated idea and will sit in a gallery without need for explanation, but with an ambiguity that will annoy modern art’s detractors and enthral its lovers.
But what of the second strand of the project, Monogenesis? As with any grand concept, new ideas and alternative possibilities constantly present themselves and Lisle-Taylor’s opus (one cant help suspecting that this could become a sprawling life’s work) has grown a second shoot. Biblical stories tell us the Garden of Eden was God’s first choice for Adam and Eve, but Darwinian science suggests Ethiopia as the actual birthplace of humanity, and for Lisle-Taylor this can only mean one thing… another trip.
As we finish our interview, Lisle-Taylor reveals a new, blue map, a map of Ethiopia covered in tiny caveman-like drawings of historical and technical scenes. It’s printed on architect’s paper and framed by steel tubing, but the whole thing can be dismantled and folded for easy travel. And there’s a second press, but not for apples – they don’t grow in Ethiopia apparently (and I cant believe its not already been mentioned) but ‘apple’ is an old European word to describe any foreign fruit, so all that remains is to research the oldest Ethiopian fruit, fly there with a giant map and a 200lb fruit press and make some pomegranate juice. Simple. As I prepare to leave though, he casually mentions some other ancient civilisations with claims on the origins of man – the Mayans, the native American Indians, the original Australians – and I quickly realise this work of art is a long way from completion. In truth, it’s only just begun.
“The Embassy is dead. Long live The Embassy!” 08 Oct 2009
Produced by Alex Dellal’s 20 Hoxton Square Projects, in collaboration with Zoom Art Projects, The Embassy is a multi-disciplinary group show being held during Frieze Art Fair. Curated by Dellal and Xerxes Cook, the exhibition is a parody of outmoded cultural diplomacy in the form of an anonymous country’s embassy, a dystopia whose tyrannical government has tested the patience of its people and brought them to tipping point.
Participating artists include: Marco Brambilla, Terence Koh, Rosey Chan, Tom Gallant, Alastair Mackie, Oliver Clegg, Wolfe von Lenkiewicz, Bruce French, Henry Hudson, Michael Lisle-Taylor, Laurence Owen, Karim Rabik and Hugo Wilson.
A mixture of painting, sculpture and installation, works featured in The Embassy include a national anthem by the pianist Rosey Chan, a presidential palace built from mud by Alastair Mackie, a flag by Tom Gallant, and former service man, Michael Lisle-Taylor will present his Tournament of the Dirty Nurse, an ornately embroidered boxing ring still covered in the blood, sweat and tears from bouts that have taken place within it. Other works include paintings on old school desks by Oliver Clegg, lungs in three stages of the pulmonary cycle - shock, agitation and panic by Hugo
Wilson and caricature regal portraits by Henry Hudson in his distinctive plasticine style.
Less than 100 metres from Regents Park, the BBC headquarters and opposite the Chinese Embassy, The Embassy will take place at the former residence of the Sierra Leonean ambassador to Britain, 33 Portland Place. As the Internet allows the art, culture and news reportage of countries to become ever more accessible to each other, what were once bastions of this exchange – the embassies of countries wishing to create a dialogue with their host nation – now retreat behind metres of concrete, becoming fortresses of espionage. Globalisation has rendered the sometime patronising kind of cultural exchange once conducted by embassies dated. Yet, occupying a privileged position apart from their host nation – indeed, retaining their sovereignty in a foreign land – these buildings and their interiors provide a revealing glimpse of how a country chooses to represent itself abroad.
The Embassy tells the story of a deposed diplomat representing a government that has just been overthrown at home. A pastiche of the manner in which embassies promote their country’s culture abroad and set across the two floors of 33 Portland Place, works from over 15 artists will speak of themes relevant to the mismanagement of a country – greed, egotism, repression, theocracy, malnutrition, gluttony, tyranny, currency, geography and sex – because the dictator always gets the best lines.
Without wishing to recreate the mise-en-scene of an explicit narrative, the site-specific exhibition engages with the extraordinary history of its location, a 6-floor Georgian townhouse on London’s Portland Place. Between 1954 and 1998, 33 Portland Place was occupied and used as the embassy for the government of Sierra Leone. The Embassy seeks to engage with some of the factors that led to demise of successive Sierra Leonean governments – corruption, diamonds, personal gain, ethnic conflict, pride, drugs, jealousy – but without being specific to the Western African country or indeed, any other. The Embassy is that of an anonymous country, a very badly managed one at that. It is, in short, how not to run a country.
An interesting project, rife with critique. Well worth the visit if you're in London for the Fairs.
The Embassy is a collaborative project between 20 Hoxton Square Projects and Zoom Art Projects, curated by Alex Dellal and Xerxes Cook.
Wallpaper - Frieze Week Report 19 October 2009
At The Embassy, the ex-Sierra Leone Embassy in fact, young curator Xerxes Cook and Alex Dellal of 20, Hoxton Square projects, created an anonymous nation, where disharmony, tyranny and corruption were the norm. It was an ambitious show (it doesn’t get much bigger than trying to represent an entire, fictitious country), but highlights included a boxing ring by ex-marine-turned-artist Michael Lisle-Taylor where all manner of gratuitous violence could be performed, a wattle and daub Capitol Hill building by Alastair Mackie and Wolfe von Lenkiewicz’s political paintings. Artist Rosey Chan played a violated National Anthem on the piano and actors from Kevin Spacey’s troupe posed as the corpulent and corrupt ambassador.
artnet.com LONDON DISPATCH Laura K. Jones
"The Embassy," produced by 20 Hoxton Square Projects and Zoom Art Projects, was a "parody of outmoded cultural diplomacy" held in the former embassy of Sierra Leone at 33 Portland Place, just 100 meters from Regent’s Park. Alastair Mackie whose work is also included in "The Age of The Marvelous," showed a presidential palace made from mud, aptly titled Mud Hut (2005), and former serviceman turned artist Michael Lisle-Taylor showed two ancient ceremonial uniforms, both fashioned into straitjackets, Black Knight Squared Away and Crossing the Line (both 2007). Wandering up and down the stairs of the sixth-floor Georgian townhouse was none other than the very wholesome Sting; there no doubt, because his daughter Coco Sumner knows the curator and participants.
20 Hoxton Square Projects Showcases One of the Strongest Shows During London Art Week October 18th, 2009
The idea for the show was initially formed after Dellal learnt how certain embassies are now using parts of their premises to promote their national artists. Alex wanted “to do the exact opposite by inviting artists from all over to recreate the national identity of an anonymous country”. Instead of having an embassy defined by artists’ nationality, the artists would define the embassy’s nationality.Dellal and Cook invited emerging artists Marco Brambilla, Terence Koh, Rosey Chan, Tom Gallant, Alastair Mackie, Oliver Clegg, Wolfe von Lenkiewicz, Bruce French, Henry Hudson, Michael Lisle-Taylor, Laurence Owen, Olympia Scarry, Karim Rabik and Hugo Wilson to take inspiration from the building and it’s former owners, whose country has a façade of democracy, but in fact whose political history depicts a quite different story with abuses of power, corruption and financial crisis.
The result is a breathtaking pop-up exhibition, less than a couple of minutes away from the madness of Frieze in Regents Park, and I’d say one of the main highlights in London Art week and a must-see show.
JB Pelham PR clearly did a good job on the preview night as the building was rammed with people desperately trying to get in and join the likes of Alexander McQueen, Meredith Ostrom, Jo Wood, Charlotte Casiraghi, Lilly Allen, Anouk Lepere, Jefferson hack, Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, Valentino, Andy Wong, Charlotte Dellal, Marc Quinn, Evgeny Lebedev and Oswald Boateng. Guests were all floating around the building admiring works who spoke of themes relevant to the mismanagement of a country - greed, egotism, repression, theocracy, malnutrition, gluttony, tyranny and geography.There were also performance artists who were hired for the evening to assume the characters of diplomats, busily and noisily tearing through the space on official business.I went to see ‘The Embassy’ in the full light of day, after visiting Frieze a second time round. Every year I go to Frieze, full of expectation, hoping that I am going to see something that is going to blow me away and I always leave feeling a bit disappointed. However, my spirits lifted once I visited Alex and Xerxes’ offering.
On entering the building, I was greeted by Tyrone Wood (son ‘of’) who works with Xerxes at Zoom Art Projects, and handed a beautiful duck-egg blue catalogue with details of the 15 or so artists whose work was on display.
Ok, ok…so initially, I was a bit skeptic – some may say its easy to put on a show like this when one has family money and connections, but it was the informative and slickly designed catalogue forced me to take a closer look. The intro by Xeres was enlightening and well written, coupled with photographs of the work by Igor Tolstoy – no doubt a descendant of the famous author, knowing that ‘crew’.
I was totally awe-struck by this site-specific, theatrical exhibition staged by two young men who are still very new to the art world. The show, which mixes painting, sculpture and installation work, has been extremely well curated by Alex and Xerxes and engages perfectly with the extraordinary history of its location.It is true to say that the stunning, multi-floor premises helps with the general sense of awe one has when viewing the exhibition, but it doesn’t detract from the work which is clever and engaging.
The painting below is Wolfe Lenkiewicz’s (b.1966) ‘Lincoln Eagle’ and is a modern-day spin on a Baroque allegory showing a plane-crashing into Lincoln riding an eagle with the face of Jesus wearing a crown of thorns. Lenkiewicz’s canvases are often filled with a cast of characters, and a variety of symbols and icons taken from environments as diverse as Greek mythology and 1950’s pop culture.Former servicemanMichael Lisle-Taylor’s (b.1669) practice is predominantly sculpture based, but it also consists of modifying emotively charged found objects, already heavily emblazoned with the marks of their own history, such as his work below -‘Tournament of the Dirty Nurse’. This piece is an ornately embroidered boxing ring showcased in one of the building’s dark, back rooms still covered in the blood, sweat and tears from bouts that have taken place within it.His other works – ‘Crossing the Line’ and ‘Black Night Squared Away’ are from an ongoing series of ceremonial uniforms modified into garments of restraint which explore the culture of the military.
Press Release: MADDER139: No.1 VYNER STREET LONDON E2 9DG 4 Sept- 4 October 2009 Kieran Lyons, August 2009Sucking-Chest-Wound 2009The hilarity at the core of Michael Lisle-Taylor’s work arises from a dance with military service that won’t let go. It’s an embrace that promotes its own laughter. It probes the interfaces of insubordination while acknowledging that discipline encodes behaviour that prevails when rupture and trauma take hold. Men and horses get blown-up: humour anaesthetises, repels and provides a safe passage back to the problem. Today, in Helmand, donkeys are used as roadside bombs. It’s a world of ‘shock and eeeyore.’ Stand back, it’s best not to get in the way – perhaps it’s best not to get it anyway. What’s left in Lisle-Taylor when the laughter subsides? His skill for a start, which refers to his time in the service working with aircraft and weapons-handling equipment. He’s good at adapting Blues Ceremonial kit as well. His sewing is reliable and as matter-of-fact as his way of assembling his functional sculptures. Consequently the shredded uniforms, the dislocated flags, the themes of fragmentation and dispersal have the additional pathos of knowing how to destroy such well made things. In ‘Omm Papa’, Lisle-Taylor contrasts the paraphernalia of childhood and play – rocking horse, roundabout, see-saw – to put on show the evidence of this violent protest. In ‘Yeehaa’, Lisle-Taylor redirects the motif of the flag away from its modernist rhetoric and reclaims it as the emblematic device it always was. The work indicates the rituals played out with increasing regularity as troops are brought back from foreign service. The flags that cover military caskets are ceremonially folded in a particular way. The fragments of Old Glory in this work are seen through a matrix of folds and cuts, packed into triangular containers and displayed in an inescapable reference to the diagonals of the Union Jack. Consequently the image settles on neither one but reflects the uneasy alliance between the two. The shattered metaphors of ‘Omm Papa’ in consequence accrue problematic associations when American political equivocation and popular support for the IRA is factored in. The 1982 Knightsbridge explosion is at the centre of this exhibition, but it conjures other reverberations from further afield. In 2008, Lisle-Taylor travelled to the Tien Shan mountains in east Kazakhstan in order to pick enough wild apples to make thirty litres of cider for his work ‘Diaspora’. His theme is dispersal – not the dispersal that results from the detonation of malign devices but a more insidious permutation of knowledge. The Tien Shan apples are the apples of the original Fall, the Garden of Eden Apples, the ones Milton discussed in ‘Paradise Lost’ – we learn also that this beautiful region with its wild prelapsarian fruit became a nuclear testing range before the Soviet downfall. ‘Diaspora’ conveys its cargo of isotope-laden laughter that conceals its own warning but – as with the compelling nature of the other pieces in this show – much of this particular hilarity carries with it its collateral of pain as well.
Article: 125 Magazine. Rebellion issue; March 2008 Lisle-Taylor’s transition from aircraft mechanic to sculptor has not been without obstacles. Aspirations to be a taxidermist ran aground at a young age and when a run of botched badgers began to resemble an experimental fly farm, a change in career was needed. After quitting his A-level art course, he joined the Royal Navy and trained as an aircraft mechanic where his first year’s service saw him deployed on Cold War operations around the arctic circle, then on to mine clearance in the Persian Gulf during the Iran-Iraq war. Upon leaving the forces in 2000 (he remains a reservist), work placements at The Royal Opera House, Bristol’s Old Vic and a theatre design course at Wimbledon College led him to a Foundation in Art at Bath, before specialising in sculpture on the BA course at Chelsea College of Art. His 2004 degree show, entitled ‘Bedlam’, was a great success and offered an insight into the work to come. Included in the show was a Grenadier Guard tunic modified into a straightjacket, and Lisle-Taylor achieved the dream of any British art student when Charles Saatchi bought the piece and immediately exhibited it in his County Hall gallery, on top of which, days later, The Imperial War Museum acquisitioned art from the same show for their permanent collection. After graduation, he was awarded a place at the Royal College of Art where he refined his military-influenced modus operandi, which culminated in a final show at the RCA entitled ‘Tournament of the Dirty Nurse’, comprising of a compact and distorted boxing ring which was later broken down and airlifted beneath a helicopter during a Royal Marines military exercise and reconstructed on the summit of a Welsh peak. Adding performance to his skills as a carpenter, seamstress and strategist, the exercise itself became integral to the piece, with the accumulated scars on its highly stitched canvas adding gravitas to the work. One year on and Lisle-Taylor has completed his first solo show at the Madder 139 Gallery in London, a show which included a piece entitled ‘Maiden Voyage’, a Heath Robinson-style submarine that he took cave diving under the Brecon Beacons. His cavalier attitude to safety eventually scared off a leading diver hired to support him. Never one to be defeated, Lisle-Taylor went ahead with the dive alone, the submarine later exhibited alongside a number of pieces including ‘Blood, Sweat and Freckles’ - a flag framed as a ceremonial sarcophagus, inspired by a military shit-splatting game. Don’t ask.
Press Release: Something Less, Something More David Roberts Art Foundation, 20th March2008 draws together works from 14 International artists and is the second in a series of exhibitions at Gallery One One One, featuring works from the David Roberts collection. ... this exhibition explores the use of objects and ready-mades in some recent works ... Michael Lisle Taylor (born 1969, Wales): The sculptural work exists both as relic - remains of an event, be it actual or imagined - and as an emotionally charged object in itself. Lisle Taylor’s political work is brutally honest, almost overburdened with meaning and history.
Something Less, Something More is the second exhibition at the Gallery 111 to unveil parts of the david roberts collection. The exhibition explores how artists challenge and re-interpret minimalist and conceptual strategies. The exhibited works play with the concept of the ready-made, either using found objects or elements in the direct legacy of Marcel Duchamp, commissioning new manufactured objects in a more minimalist way or re-creating by hand facsimiles of existing objects in a traditional manner.
With Bettina Allamoda, Bertozzi & Casoni, Pierre Bismuth, Oliver Clegg, Martin Creed, Elmgreen & Dragset, David Ersser, Neil Gall, Tatsuya Kimata, Simon Linke, Nate Lowman, Donald Moffett, Michael Lisle Taylor, Manuela Ribadeneira .
Press: THE GUARDIAN PICK OF THE WEEK May 26 2007 Michael Lisle-Taylor, Madder Rose, EC1 "Brash machismo and absurdity, this recent RCA graduate's performances are intrepid in the extreme"
Press Release:MADDER139: 137-139 WHI TECROSS STREE T LONDON EC1Y 8J L 17 May–27 June 2007
Persons attempting to find a motive in this narrative will be prosecuted; persons attempting to find a moral in it will be banished; persons attempting to find a plot in it will be shot. ‘Authors note’, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn—Mark Twain
Michael Lisle-Taylor graduated from Sculpture at the Royal College last year, prior to this he had completed his BA at Chelsea. Before this he served 13 years in the military. This will be Lisle-Taylor’s first solo show, showcasing a body of work which encompasses sculpture, photography, video, and drawing, often as part of the execution of some seemingly hair brained scheme. For Tournament of the Dirty Nurse 2006 he manufactured an ornately embroidered boxing ring, then hauled it up a mountain piece by piece for reconstruction at the summit. He subsequently recruited former colleagues to airlift the boxing ring. It dangled precariously through the sky and then landed in an anonymous UK airfield. The resulting video is both comic and gutsy, as if the mechanics of war have been raided by the artist. For Madder 139, Lisle-Taylor will take a welded and upholstered submarine invention on a cave-diving escapade under the Welsh Hills. On May 16th we will be presenting the outcome of this dangerous endeavour, whatever this might be. So far it’s included the meticulously drawn plans and construction of the beautiful, though cumbersome vessel itself. Hanging from your Daisy Chain 2007 will stand alone in the upper gallery, a climbing frame tightly corseted with sailing canvas, and bolted with sharp fixings. Too fragile and vicious for its original purpose, a pointless enterprise somehow made meaningful. Oddly seductive, it sits awaiting its miss/use. The sculptural work exists both as relic - remains of an event, be it actual or imagined - and as thing in itself. The work is brutally honest, almost overburdened with meaning and with history. Each component is sourced precisely, its motive reasoned, its implication planned, the use of certain materials has become policy. Carpenter, seamstress and strategist, Lisle-Taylor follows elaborate working processes, comparable to life in the army. The architecture of conditioning; its ceremony and manoeuvres, the spit and polish, the uniforms and drill. It’s dignity reduced to absurdity, and dignified once more - a blunt practice for these muted times. Wonder, terror, and something comic too. The illogicality of the task is set.
SELECTED SHOW DETAILS
Artists :- David Mach, Wendy Smith, Michael Lisle -Taylor , Peter Newell-Price, Tim A Shaw , Mathew Gibson. Curator: Stephanie Nebbia
2012 ‘One Giant Leap’
Artwork from the Saatchi collection, curated by Rebecca Wilson
Off-site The Churchill London www.saatchi-gallery.co.uk
Artists :- Dexter Dalwood, Ronin Cho, Celine Fitoussi, Lothar Hempel, Martin Honert, Chantal Joffe, Michael Lisle-Taylor, Liz Neal, Tim Stoner, Steve Bishop, Kate Lyddon, Stella Vine, Christina Mackie, Rafal Zawistowski, Shara Hughes, Hayley Newman, Steven Gontarski, Roland Hicks, Johnny Spencer, Boo Ritson, David Ordning, Clare Pestaille, Jody Carey
2009 The Embassy | The Embassy is dead. Long live The Embassy!
Produced by Alex Dellal’s 20 Hoxton Square Projects, in collaboration with Zoom Art Projects, at 33 Portland Place. The Embassy is a multi-disciplinary group show being held during Frieze Art Fair. Curated by Dellal and Xerxes Cook, Down load catalogue at link below :-
Artists :- Marco Brambilla, Terence Koh, Rosey Chan, Tom Gallant, Alastair Mackie, Oliver Clegg, Wolfe von Lenkiewicz, Bruce French, Henry Hudson, Michael Lisle-Taylor, Laurence Owen, Karim Rabik, Hugo Wilson
2008 ‘Something less, Something’
Gallery One One One 111 Great Titchfield Street, London W1W 6RY More, 20th March- 25th May,
Artists :-Bettina Allamoda, Bertozzi & Casoni, Pierre Bismuth, Oliver Clegg, Martin Creed, Michael Lisle-Taylor, Elmgreen & Dragset, David Ersser, Neil Gall, Tatsuya Kimata, Simon Linke, Nate Lowman, Donald Moffett, Manuela Ribadeneira
One One One, London, showcases the talents of 25 of London’s finest MA and BA students from 2005 /2006, collated by three of the sharpest-eyed contemporary curators in the UK Flora Fairbairn, Kay Saatchi and Catriona Warren.
Artists :- Jodie Carey, Andy Denzler , Tom Price,Emma Puntis,Tatsuya Kimata’s, Doug White, Boo Ritson’s, Frances Richardson, Boo Ritson, Michael Lisle-Taylor
Artists :- Amanda Couch, Sarah Dwyer, Doug Fishbone, Laura Green, Aisling Hedgecock, Tony Heywood, Graham Hudson, Thomas Hylander, Michael Lisle-Taylor, Ryan Mosley, Clare Parry, Clara S Rueprich, Claudia Sarnthein, David Spero, Raymond Taudin Chabot, Sally Underwood.
in association with Art Review,
Artists :- Daniel Wallis, Tessa Farmer, Annie Kevans, Katrina Palmer, Michael Lisle-Taylor,
2005 ‘Act Art 03, Disorder’
Central Station. Performance and video art event
Artists :- Yr Mum Ya Dad Catwalking, Tai Shani, Stav B, Sally Brookes, Richard Sawdon Smith, Philip Lee, Oreet Ashery, Sputnik 2 - Martin Degville, Lee Adams, Kira O'reilly, Jo Public, Ira Goodman, Hans Scheirl, Ernesto Sarezale, Donald Urquhart, Dafna Ganani, Candice Tripp, Alan Mcquillan, Anat Ben David, Craig Yamey, Darran Leaf, Duggie Fields, Ernst Fischer, Michael Lisle-Taylor,Helen Spackman, Jemima Burril, Joe Frazer, Laura Napier, Marc Massive, Oliver Frost, Paule Sviano, Philip Normal, Rory Haines, Seb Patane, Stewart Who?, Wayne G.
2005 ‘ Imagine a World...’
Bargehouse, Oxo Tower Wharf, London25 November - 11 December 2005 Curated by Emma Underhill for Amnesty International UK
Artists :- Guerrila Girls, Tracey Emin, Jemima Burrill, Grayson Perry, Martha Rosler, Catherine Bertola, Shane Waltener, Grace Ndiritu, Jet, Anat Ben-David, Marica Farquhar, Elaine Tribley, Jeroo Roy, Sion Parkinson, Josefine Engstrom, Karin Hoffstedt & Cecilia Lindgren, The House of O'Dwyer, Michael Lisle-Taylor, Stella Vine, Marc Quinn, Illustrious Co, Vince Clarke & Martyn Ware and Alison Lapper.
2004 ‘Act Art 02’
291 Gallery. Live performance, video, painting and sculpture event curated by Juliana C. Leite and Oliver Frost.
Artists :- A Constructed World, Andrea Leria, Bradley, Bea Turner, Daniela Amaral, Del Lagrce Volcano, Ernst Fischer, George Chakravarthi, Guilio Vaccaro, Hans Scheirl, Hayley Newman, Helen Spackman, Ira Goodman, Jemima Burrill, Juliet Walker, Katherine Hymers, Kristi Malakoff, Lee Adams, Makoto Fujino, Dj Malinky, Molotov Cocks, Nicolas Vass, Oliver Frost, Oreet Ashery, Richard Kellett, Peter Rockmount, Stav B, Sarah Gilder, Tai Shani, Timberlina & The Kitchenettes, Tom Price, Vanda Playford.
2004 ‘Galleon And Other Stories’
work installed direct from Lisle-Taylors BA degree show during. At The Saatchi Gallery County Hall 07 July - 07 Nov.
Artists :- Michael Lisle-Taylor, Anne Chu, Conrad Shawcross, Jamie Shovlin, Mally Mallinson, Kate Mccgwire, Lucy Mckenzie, Dexter Dalwood, Hiroshi Sugimoto, Grayson Perry, Yasumasa Morimura, David Thorpe, Display Rooms 1- 10 Peter Doig , Luc Tuymans, Martin Kippenberger, TAL R, Marlene Dumas, Daniel Richter, Noble And Webster, Michael Raedecker , David Falconer, Belinde De Bruyckere, Rotunda Gallery,Jenny Saville, Sarah Lucas,Damien Hirst, Tracey Emin, Chris Ofili, Chapman Brothers, Ron Mueck, Marc Quinn, Gavin Turk, Gary Hume, Boiler Room, Hiroshi Sugito, Hernan Bas, Dana Schutz, Baumgartel, John Kørner, Permanent Installation, Oil Room: Richard Wilson.
2004 ‘A Little Flat in Kensington’
Curated by Maria Walsh
2003 ‘Act Art 01’ 291 Gallery.
Live performance, video, painting and sculpture event curated by Juliana C. Leite and Oliver Frost
Artists :- Bruna Rocha, Celia Noss, Cecile Mairat, Daniela Amaral, Jemima Burrill, Ira Goodman, Juliana Amaral Leite, Lee Adams, Nadim Samman, Oliver Frost, Oliver Pitceathly, Oreet Ashery, Othan Mataragas, Rebecca Marsh, Peter Rockmount, Timberlina, Vanda Playford.