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Egg junkies, pooing cats, Rolex watches and minimalist mountains—Charles Avery's art seems silly enough to laugh at. Has the art world been duped?

By Ben Lewis   November 2008

One of the recurring sensations I’ve had while looking at new art over the last five years has been a bittersweet feeling—as pleasurable as frustrating—of recognising something familiar without quite being able to put my finger on what it reminds me of. The work of the 35-year-old Scottish artist Charles Avery is a perfect example. Since 2004, he’s been developing a multimedia Gesamtkunstwerk of an imaginary island in drawings, objects, texts, models and creative taxidermy. His project to date might make you think of a 19th-century ethnographic museum, Gulliver’s Travels, a John Buchan novel, Italo Calvino’s Invisible Cities, Alice in…

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