Enrico David London
Those who dismissed Enrico David’s 2009 Turner prize-shortlisted show as nothing more than scatological pantomime should perhaps come and look more closely at this recent work and think again. Like the almost incomparable Louise Bourgeois, David has achieved the unimaginable by breathing new life into late, great surrealism. His sculptural installations have all the peculiarity of our worst and best dreams. A male and female couple, hand-crafted in builders’ Jesmonite, balance precariously atop the steel silhouette of a fortress. Potbellied, pallid, wrinkled, and terribly naked, his lost souls barely hold on for dear life while sporting poses of wincing concentration. David presents theatrical tableaux of forsaken dolls, bedraggled mutants and ungainly blob-people. This stuff might look unschooled but don’t be fooled: David is like a highly in-the-know interloper, in touch with the nitty-gritty of our common vulnerabilities, yet reaching out with an undeniable pathos.