Tag Archives: Art

Edinburgh Fringe Inspiration

The Fringe 2009 has now ended. This year, the BF and I went to see a fair amount of shows, in particular, those of the Laughing Horse Free Fringe. Here, performers pay nothing to the venues they use, but they also don’t charge the punters. It’s a win-win situation: The venue (often a pub) gets extra customers buying drinks due to ‘free entertainment’, while the performers get (hopefully) a larger, more enthusiastic audience.

But how do they get paid? The deal is that we, the audience, pay on our way out – in line with what we thought the show was worth. This keeps the performers on their toes, and allows (ideally) for a more authentic experience for everyone.

I’m mentioning the Fringe in my quest to reiterate my desire to become a writer. This blog’s function (hopefully) is to turn into some kind of scrap book, where I collect and note down all the things that will help keep the flame alive and put me onto the right path. Because, let’s face it, with a job that is sometimes ‘enjoyable’ and ‘rewarding’, I’ll be in danger of just forgetting all about it again. And waking up in 10 years’ time only to find that I haven’t contributed anything to the world.

The inspiration of the Fringe, then:

  1. There is a different life out there, and people are living it
  2. So can I

Gerhard Richter exhibition and a Homeless Girl

Abstract Painting 780-1 by Gerhard Richter
Image by cliff1066 via Flickr

I went to the Gerhard Richter exhibition that I’ve been wanting to go to for ages, and which ends on the 4th January. While there, I was aware of my somewhat outsidery-status due to the number ofย  ‘toffs’ around (the upper middle-class, or maybe the educated, cultured class. I’m neither here nor there and don’t feel I belong with either).

I thoroughly enjoyed it and made some notes on my phone (copying from descriptions etc.), such as:

All his paintings, no matter what their subject matter, are about the materiality of paint. The squeegee did not allow him complete control over how the paint was applied. He greatly prized the objective element that chance introduced into his work.

Without going into too much detail, I liked the fact that his work is about materiality, and that he wants to remove his ‘personality’ (or rather, subjectivity) as much as possible. To be able to work with materials and create something that is however not about you, or your suffering, or your subjective experience. Quite the opposite of, say, Tracey Emin’s work (who incidentally had a major retrospective at the same gallery in August).

So, there I am wanking my mind with thoughts about art and objectivity, and how this is what constitutes good work (i.e. Richter’s approach – materiality, getting rid of the subject), and on my way home a 17-year-old homeless girl from Glasgow asks me for directions to Leith Walk as she was looking for a night shelter there. She’d come from Glasgow where her 22-year-old boyfriend had thrown her out, via Livingston where she went to see her mother, a junkie, who didn’t offer any support but instead asked her daughter for money to feed her habit.

So I walked her to the top of Leith Walk, chatted about irreverent stuff (my being German, she had taken German at school etc.), while inside my heart was breaking. I thought about the wanky art stuff, and its irrelevance, and how the whole strife for objectivity doesn’t really communicate anything to the great majority of people. How removed it is from the actual real materiality of life. And how we tend to forget that it’s a fucking luxury to be able to think of such subject matters as the ‘materiality of paint’ and get turned on by removing subjectivity from our wanky self-expression.

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lenina at the Space Age – exhibition

Here’s a pic of me at the Space Age – exhibition in Edinburgh that’s currently on loan from the Museum of Childhood in Bethnal Green. I did in fact go to the Museum of Childhood with the ex this year January and even blogged about it here (Museum of Childhood, Bethnal Green).

In a weird way I’ve seen the same thing with two different BFs. In my first article, I even talked about the Meteorite which of course I remembered and told B. about, and yes, it was there when we went on Saturday.

The helmet that I’m wearing is of a space costume that was provided for children to dress up and run around. I’m nearly 35 but I LOVE playing and indulging the child in me sometimes (hence I play video games and such). The good thing is that B. is like that too – probably more so.ย  Note that playfulness can sometimes be silly and maybe immature, but in our case at least, it’s never irresponsible – I take life in general rather seriously ๐Ÿ˜›


Tate Modern’s Got a Hole

Unveiled today: a huge crack in the Tate Modern’s Turbine Hall. I like sculptures that form part of the fabric of a building, rather than merely being separate from it.

My favourite sculpture is probably Rachel Whiteread‘s House. Actually, Whiteread also created a sculpture in Vienna – the Holocaust Memorial. Methinks anaj should go and see it ๐Ÿ™‚


Holocaust Memorial: