Monday, 30 May 2011

Carnie Folk

Today we got lost near the football stadium. We ended up in a series of Cul de Sacs, one by the 1930s bus depot, one by a carnival behind fencing and one near a barbers with a stolen dog poster on it's gate. We rode past Veronica Lake's apartment which looks like a set for Poirot and now houses the Brazilian mistress of a doctor who is the father of a very sweet ex student. She named the mistresses baby after me in the end so the half Brazilian Annabel lives in Veronica Lake's apartment now.
We cycled past the river near where one of the prostitute's body was found. Before I remembered that I briefly fancied swimming in it. There is a lido near us too which I yearned for, but it's full of rubbish at the moment. Alex and I went to look at it once but it was impossible to get into.
I then spent ages wrestling a huge framed watercolour painting into several jackets-cardboard, bubblewrap, cardboard etc. The image is from a beautiful red calf-skin A-Z my mother had from the 1950s. It had all of the buildings drawn in, that had actually been bombed in the war. It had my mother's bus routes in to various liason locations and some which were things like Liberty and the restaurant in Soho with the big golden snail on the front.
The painting itself spent a day unacompanied at Victoria station once. A then boyfriend took a show down for me in Brighton, left the roll of paintings on a bench and then picked them up five hours later. Only telling me on his return. The red calf-skin A-Z is lost now. pulped maybe by the mouse that used to live in my studio bedroom who used my mother's communion gloves as a nest filler.


The other artists that are to appear at Art as a Full Time Hobby are: Craig Atkinson, Gareth Bayliss, Martyn Cross and "Bad Timing" + a few more as yet unconfirmed. Craig came down to be a visiting lecturer at the college I teach in, but I missed him as it was my day off. I used to follow him on twitter but he didn't follow me so I unfollowed him in a fit of peak. Gareth probably won't remember me but he was a student on a course I taught fifteen years ago. He is much taller than he used to be. Martyn I don't know but I like his work and follow him on twitter, he has just started following me. "Bad Timing" I have no idea about but I shall follow them on twitter. I had a lazy day today doing very little beyond finally completing all four hundred and sixty eight levels of Slay and cycling from staples with an enormous roll of bubblewrap strapped to the back of my shopper. Here it is parked in the garage.

Annabel is now doggedly wrapping three large framed watercolours for a show in London  of which she is very embarrassed (I admit I asked her to hide the invites in case anyone came round). She will be happy when they sell. I have just finished reading an article on the market project site in which David Kefford describes how his art education did nothing to prepare him for the idea of selling work. I was having the identical conversation with Adam King while setting up "The Man Who Fell to Earth" (I hope it is still up). When, rarely, someone offers to buy something I usually say "take it", "no, £10000", "erm make me an offer", "no just have it". And I am (apparently) one of the more professional artists around.

Saturday, 28 May 2011

The Red Carbuncle

I have a large spot above my left eye. Annabel, after staring at it a little too avidly, insisted I take it to the chemists for assessment. Believing it to be a sty, and fearing severe disfigurement for my next private view, I agreed. Minutes later I left the pharmacist barely able to hold back gales of laughter (him not me).

"that sir, is a spot".

In advance of Market Project's next event at Aid & Abet (aid & abet again hmmm) Annabel was asking me to come up with some questions about collecting the uncollectable. While we talked I formulated an idea that I could designate a cold (or a sty) an artwork and could physically pass it on to a willing collector for a fee. We discussed the necessarily short term nature of the collector's purchase and the idea that rather than buying an object the collector was investing in a connection with the artist. How much should I charge for a cold, a sty, whooping cough, diphtheria?

Meanwhile in Limerick. Transition gallery is presenting the next instalment of The Count of Monte Cristo: The Lion's Den. The image shows five worn spoons used to dig a tunnel in my basement.

Jimmy Saville

I have been painting in the coal cellar and don't really feel like writing. I have been trying to recreate some paintings I made and have lost. They are of 'Wonders of the World' a seies of paintings and drawings I have made in response to being forbidden from looking at The Reader's Digest Atlas of the World. This is a very cheap publication that is in nearly every home I have visited. To my father, however it was the Gottenburg Bible and it lived in his 'study' which had a polished parquet floor and a leather clad desk with gold tooling. God knows what he studied in there: John Le CarrĂ© novels? the Exchange and Mart? 
It's tediously Freudian that nearly all of my work seems to come down to my despot of a father and I am hoping it's just a phase. Alex mentioned Jimmy Saville in the last post and he too reminds me of my father-MENSA member, odd aspic-image of his mother and rumblings of something rather unpleasant.

Friday, 27 May 2011


What an idiot. My mother is no sooner back from her journey across the atlantic than she tells me I have made a serious error. The photograph does not depict Dean Martin on a bicycle it is in fact Jimmy Saville!.

No its Tony Bennet I was just teasing.

Size of an Elephant!

As is often the case, I have already written and lost this and so feel disinclined to go on. We are sitting in Starbucks next to what Annabel describes as a couple of vacuous bimbos and I am trying to remember the gems I wrote earlier. Last night we watched part three of Matthew Barney's Cremaster and enjoyed watching him being ultra macho in a pink kilt. I was amazed at his power, not his muscles but rather the fact he got the Guggenheim to clear it's walls and Richard Serra to shovel hot wax (though he did seem to be enjoying it). When I last visited the very same gallery it was also closed, but for cleaning not tap dancing lamby girls. All we could do was crane our necks to the skylight with the other disappointed pilgrims. We also heard that we had both got into Kerry Baldry's "One Minute volume 5" which will start it's world tour at Aid & Abet
In July. We will probably be there, on stage, with a large bubble bath and a Bengal cat. The picture below is Dean Martin on a bike. It reminds me of "Attack of the 50 Foot Woman"!

Tuesday, 24 May 2011

Annabel Dover & Alex Pearl: High Alert

Back from my walk. I saw gnats in the sun, a black shuck, a lot of dog shit and our posh next door neighbour on his miniature bike back from a meeting in London and with a ruddy glow to his cheeks. I looked for marmite in the corner shop and tried to explain to the man behind the counter what it is. he looked confused and then disgusted.

Alex and I helped put the Foundation art show up today. There was a hissy fit from one of the fashion show boys and a student refused to sit on my (expensive cashmere) jumper to protect her from the floor as it looked to grubby (the jumper). Senior management came down to tell me that they had received 16 emails of complaint from even more senior management (it's a Saint-like intercessionary process communicating with the truly senior management). The complaints addressed the very serious issue that I had been seen on CCTV letting Alex into the college with MY CARD. What the hell I was thinking of I don't know. After paying our very sweet but curiously deranged guinea pig mad administrator (she wears a guinea pig toy on her lanyard) and has several professionally taken photos of them along with cherry blossom in Japan, on her board. Alex became a respectable human being as I thought it easier to buy him a new card. On my bike ride home Alex said I shouldn't have paid the card fee for him and it would have been fun to see what happened if he got the sack and was forced to change his life.

Talking to my boss I noticed there was a notebook entitled 'problems to sort' with several names of fellow colleagues on and their personal menopause, grief related behavioural problems. I also saw on the screen a lot of emails from senior management entitled 'Annabel Dover & Alex Pearl: High Alert'

Alex = Green Annabel = Orange

I am reading Brian Aldiss' Hothouse. It describes a world taken over by evolved plants in which small tribes of tiny humans fight for survival. One tree covers the whole planet and the moon is tethered to the Earth by vegetal spiders' webs. David asked us to send a few images of what we might be doing at Aid & Abet in July. This lead to the usual hunting for pictures which have been arcanely filed in iphoto. Mine always seem easier to find than Annabel's. I have resized them three times now and compressed them and zipped them in order that they can be squeezed over the information super byeway. It still hasn't worked.
I'll write a blog sometime, I'm just too shagged at the moment. I'm going out to look at the gnats in the sun.