CCA Highlights - May/June 2016

Bored in Glasgow this Spring? Impossible – not when there’s so much great film, art and music going on at the CCA. Allow us to be your guide

Preview by George Sully | 25 Apr 2016

The next couple of months are going to be a doozy. Voting on this, voting on that, wondering whether, in a crushing loss for democracy, Boaty McBoatface will get boringly renamed Her Majesty’s Science Dinghy or something similarly less endearing; it’s all a bit glum, isn’t it? Fortunately, Sauchiehall Street’s own oasis of the soul, the Centre for Contemporary Arts, has a programme fit to burst with diverting, entertaining joys for your perusal. Spring’s in full fling, are you?

Often a platform for activism, the CCA plays host this month to a screening of This Changes Everything (Sat 7 May), the companion film (by Canuck documentary filmmaker Avi Lewis) to the environmentalism rally-cry book of the same name by Naomi Klein. Keen to bring climate crisis conversations to the fore, Global Justice Glasgow – a Scottish chapter of the UK-wide democratic project Global Justice Now – have organised this event in coordination with the Glasgow University Climate Action Society, and invite attendees to a post-screening discussion on the subject.

In April, trailblazing community-led multi-arts festival Buzzcut returned to Glasgow for its fifth edition, bringing its usual unpredictable fireworks of visual, sonic and live art in a week-long programme of unticketed, pay-what-you-can events. In much the same spirit, you can hit up the CCA for Buzzcut: Double Thrills! (Wed 11 May & Wed 22 Jun), part of an ongoing calendar of monthly double bills showcasing work “from wild and provocative artists from Scotland and beyond”. 

Noted Glasgow-based (and Toronto-raised) artist Corin Sworn, whose rap sheet includes winning the biennial Max Mara Art Prize for Women in 2013 and exhibiting at the Venice Biennale, has collaborated with Toronto-born filmmaker Tony Romano on La Giubba (Fri 20 May), screening at the CCA in association with GRAMNet (Glasgow Refugee, Asylum and Migration Network) and followed by a Q&A with the two artists. The film (whose title literally means ‘the coat’ but is also an Italian expression for ‘the show must go on’) charts the colliding paths of five characters in southern Italy, very loosely based on Aristophanes’ classic comedy The Birds.

It’s not unusual for musicians to branch out into other media (Morrissey writes ‘books’, Patti Smith paints, Brian Cox chats about science), though few have made anything quite as batshit as erstwhile Moldy Peach and kooky soloist Adam Green’s take on Aladdin. Adam Green’s Aladdin (Fri 27 May) – described by Rolling Stone as ‘Fellini on ketamine’ – is a hallucinogenic, Saturday-morning-cartoon-on-acid adventure through space, time, sex, drugs and a 3D-printing genie, starring many of Green’s celebrity pals (such as Macauley Culkin, Devendra Banhart and Zoe Kravitz). And what’s more, the New York weirdster’s doing a gig straight after, as the film is accompanied by an album release and tour.

If you’re after some tunes without the madcap filmic counterpart, dreampop troupe Wild Nothing (Wed 15 Jun) glimmer into Glasgow this spring to tour third LP Life of Pause. Helmed by Virginian Jack Tatum, Wild Nothing have been known to convert their woozy, shoegaze voyages into jangly indie-pop in a live setting; perfect for those encroaching summer vibes. [George Sully]