Owain Train McGilvary’s exhibition is informed by his close connection with a wrestling group for women and non-binary people, in the southside of Glasgow. Owain spent the last two years working closely with the group and has created an intimate video portrait that distils many of their conversations to explore key themes including the role of ‘villain’, gender, kinship and working class lives.
Owain’s investigations into queer vernacular – such as Polari or carny - and it’s social purpose to enable queer people to live in secret and safety, is akin to some of the terminologies and motifs that he discovered in the wrestling community. In this way, he found a link between queer vernacular and the camp aesthetic of wrestling, which he interrogated further via key writing including the feminist text ‘Against Ordinary Language: The Language of The Body’ by Kathy Acker, and in his own writing.
Alongside the video exhibited in Stiwdio Seligman, Owain has produced an accompanying suite of works for the café bar. A series of paintings, drawings and collages depict bodies colliding and merging into and out of each other with details of animals, body parts and royalty, shown alongside prints and collected ephemera that illustrate the complex and rich wrestling world.
About the artist
Owain Train McGilvary (b1992 in Anglesey) works across moving image, painting, drawing and collage. He is interested in modes of communication derived from popular culture and queer vernacular, through investigating the subcultures that engage with them. The work seeks to explore their intricacies through verbal, gestural and pictorial means, considering oral history, speculation, mass media imagery and archival material together as a way of collaged storytelling.