Archive for the ‘Exhibitions’ Category

Abominable plastic primates

Thursday, May 27th, 2010
Chelsea 2009 Chelsea 2010

Every year I go the the Chelsea Flower Show and every year a fibreglass gorilla is there. People walk past bemusedly looking at it. Some go up and look at the price tag and stagger away in disbelief. It is £14000. The fibrglass gorilla is surrounded on all sides by less bulky fibreglass things such as a sleeping hound, a mystic mermaid and various nymphs looking weak and submissive. The fibreglass gorilla does not look weak and submissive. If you opened your curtains of a morning and saw the fibreglass gorilla on your lawn you would not think ‘god that fibreglass gorilla looks weak and submissive’. In fact if you opened your curtains of a morning and saw the fibreglass gorilla on your lawn the least of your worries would be whether or not it looked weak and submissive. This is because a. You are likely to have far too much money to care. b. You have the aesthetic sensibility of Jordan after she has done a BA in Bad Taste from the University of Poundland and c. You are a laughing stock for miles around because you have paid £14000 to have a fibreglass gorilla on your lawn. Garden gnomes are banned from the Chelsea Flower Show because they are in bad taste. Garden gnomes are, on average, around 12 inches in height. You can easily hide a garden gnome under a tasteful tuscan pot or behind a stunning stipa gigantea. For all we know the whole of the Chelsea Flower Show could be secretly stuffed with bad taste garden gnomes that are hidden from view by dint of their diminutive dimensions. If the RHS will not allow the open display of garden gnomes then WHY OH WHY DO THEY ALLOW THE ANNUAL DISPLAY OF THIS SIX FOOT ABOMINATION? It’s right opposite Titmarsh’s bunker too.  Some plastic things shouldn’t be allowed. That’s two for starters.

Party like it’s 1888

Saturday, March 27th, 2010

Party like it's 1888

They’re building a new metro line passing through Centraal Station in Amsterdam. What better opportunity than to use the temporary hoardings surrounding the construction site to display the work of young artists. Even cleverer is to provide downloadable copies of the works displayed. The one pictured above is a detail from Stefan Glerum’s history of Vincent Van Gogh’s life.

Empty modern monument awaits ancient contents

Friday, November 17th, 2006

Q: What do you do with an empty massive white plastic dome in the centre of London?
A: Keep it empty for 7 years and then rent it out to an exhibition of ancient Egyptian artifacts.
Currently packing them in in Chicago, ‘King Tutankhamun and the Golden Age of the Pharaohs’ is due to arrive at the Millenium Dome in London in twelve months. In 1972 1.6 million people queued around the block and the clock at the British Museum to see the pharaonic plunderings of Carter and Carnarvon. It was the most successful exhibition in Britain ever and I missed it because in those days a trip to London was more akin to visiting Turkmenistan never mind Tutankhamun and, anyway, I was more interested in acquiring my next Airfix fix than spending hours queuing up to see a load of gold stuff belonging to a dead bloke. Such simple tastes in my youth. [ Angel Delight anyone? ] So, it was with mounting excitement that I learned of the the impending arrival of what seemed like a new Tutankhamun blockbuster in London. The website has a pretty commercial feel. Would a scholarly outfit include the phrase, “Give the gift of King Tut” on their homepage? I think not. Sadly, reading more widely reveals that there have been mixed reviews for this show. Many have been lured by the marketing materials which feature an image remarkably similar in appearance to the gold death mask which has become emblematic of Tutankhamun and ancient Egypt to some degree. [The item featured is actually a mini coffin which was a travel case for King T’s liver]. Many have been expectant that this is a repeat of the 1970s show, “For the first time in 30 years..”, runs the strapline. From what I’ve read, this is nothing on the scale of what I missed all those years ago. But having looked around the online virtual tour I think it may still be worth a look. I just won’t expect it to make up for what I didn’t see in 1972. I remember they were saying at the time that it was a ‘once in a lifetime’ opportunity. This of course was in the days before low cost air travel. Does easyjet fly to Cairo?

Unfortunately named Catholic social theorist / ethicist / philosopher and political economists: no 1
Götz Briefs
[ at least his parents didn’t call him Crüsty ]