Set in the very near future, Mickey, an old art-school friend, recognises Ian’s voice on the radio discussing the exhibition and arranges to meet him. Walking around the Edinburgh streets, they entertainingly recap on their own experiences of art but also the history of art itself. Mickey is puzzled by the current situation which he finds ‘confused and contradictory,’ and asks Ian, whom he says, ‘always had that mad-art stare,’ if he can make sense of it, ‘What’s good and what’s bad…. Do you know Ian?’ he asks.
The exhibition, with MacIntyre’s own ‘own style’, the highly original cantata composition and performance are a tour de force. The essay itself is incredible, eye-opening, radical, uncompromising, hard-hitting and certainly controversial. It sees beyond wealth and fame to analyse just what great art really is. The essay predicts that this exhibition will come to be known simply as ‘The MacIntyre Show’ – it could be right.