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archive 2003

click here for archive through end 2002

 

July 25, 2003

 

Bridget Riley, High Sky 2, 1992. Neues Museum, Nurnberg, Germany © 2003 Bridget Riley. All rights reserved

Bridget Riley, High Sky 2, 1992
Neues Museum, Nurnberg, Germany © 2003 Bridget Riley

 

Bridet Riley 26 June - 28 September 2003

at

Tate Britain
on the North Bank of the River Thames

 

Bridget Riley, Movement In Squares, 1961. © 2003 Bridget Riley. All rights reserved. Courtesy of Arts Council Collection, London

Bridget Riley, Movement In Squares, 1961
© 2003 Bridget Riley. All rights reserved. Courtesy of Arts Council Collection, London

 

It is hard to imagine that you can feel ambiguous about Bridget Riley's work.  You either love the precision of her design... or you don't.  She demonstrates the finest example of the art of geometry.  

It may appear simple: construct on graph paper in back and white or in colour and paint a 3 dimensional picture which gives movement to 2 dimensional art.

 

Bridget Riley, To a Summer's Day, 1980. Tate. Purchased 1982 © 2003 Bridget Riley. All rights reserved

Bridget Riley, To a Summer's Day, 1980
Tate. Purchased 1982 © 2003 Bridget Riley

 

Bridget Riley is one of Britain’s best-known artists. Since the mid-1960s she has been celebrated for her distinctive, optically vibrant paintings which actively engage the viewer’s sensations and perceptions, producing visual experiences that are both challenging and entertaining.

 

Bridget Riley, Evoë 3, 2002. Private Collection © 2003 Bridget Riley. All rights reserved

Bridget Riley, Evoë 3, 2002 Private Collection © 2003 Bridget Riley.

 

Riley’s paintings exist on their own terms. Her subject matter is restricted to a simple vocabulary of colours and abstract shapes. These form her starting point and from them she develops formal progressions, colour relationships and repetitive structures. The effect is to generate sensations of movement, light and space: visual experiences which also have a strong emotional and even visceral resonance.

Although her work is abstract, such experiences seem surprisingly familiar. During her childhood, when she lived in Cornwall, she formed an acute responsiveness to natural phenomena. In particular, the effects of light and colour in the landscape made a deep impression. Though her mature work does not proceed from observation, it is nevertheless connected with the experience of nature. Of her paintings, she has commented: ‘the eye can travel over the surface in a way parallel to the way it moves over nature. It should feel caressed and soothed, experience frictions and ruptures, glide and drift…One moment there will be nothing to look at and the next second the canvas seems to refill, to be crowded with visual events.’

This parallel relation between Riley’s art and nature has underpinned the development of her work, coloring the way it forms both an exploration and a celebration of a fundamental human experience: sight.   And the way you look at her works dictate your response to them.  The titles seldom give away the big clues, therefore it is up to the individual to interpret them......, or just be visually entertained by a the works of art 'generated' by an apparent perfectionist

Riley’s work falls into phases or groups in which it is possible to see certain formal ideas being worked through. At the same time, however, her work has not followed a single, straightforward line of development. Rather, its course resembles a kind of musical progression in which different themes are stated, explored, combined with other ideas, and progressively transformed.

The exhibition is  arranged in a broadly chronological order, and according to phases or families of related paintings. Within these groups internal connections can be discovered and ideas stated earlier can be seen reappearing in later works.

Although I am a big fan of black and white, I find Riley's works in color the most effective.  The tonal qualities generated by the use of complimentary and contrasting colors add to the texture of the painting and give them a greater feeling of depth and perspective that goes far beyond trickery of the eye!

 

Bridget Riley, Zing 1, 1971. Private Collection © 2003 Bridget Riley. All rights reserved

Bridget Riley, Zing 1, 1971

 

As I left, clutching my Paul Smith notebook a thought came to my mind -  re-inventing a artist's work is a serious form of flattery!

 

 
Bridget Riley, Movement In Squares, 1961. © 2003 Bridget Riley. All rights reserved. Courtesy of Arts Council Collection, London

 

Hours

Daily 10.00am - 17.40pm
Last admission 17.00pm

Tate Britain Restaurant
Open Monday - Saturday 12.00-15.00pm
Sunday 12.00-16.00
Reservations +4420 7887 8825

Tickets

£8.50 (USD14 approx.)
£6 concessions (USD10 approx.)

Tate Ticketing on +4420 7887 8888.
Lines are open Monday to Friday, 10.00 to 17.50.

Tickets for special exhibitions can be bought at Tate Britain or Tate Modern seven days a week from 10.00 to 17.00, with late opening until 21.00 at Tate Modern on Friday and Saturday. There is no booking fee when you buy tickets in person at the galleries.

Free entry for Members, Patrons and individual children under twelve when accompanied by an adult.

 

the Editor, July 6, 2003

 

 

July 6, 2003

 

 

Wimbledon

at
The All England Lawn Tennis & Croquet Club,
Wimbledon,
London SW19 5AE,
England

 

June 23. 2003 to July 6, 2003

Tennis Star.jpg (59565 bytes)

Tennis Star.jpg (59565 bytes)

 

2001 Men's Champion, Goran Ivanisevic

   
   
MENS LADIES
Wimbledon 2003 Seedings Wimbledon 2003 Seedings
1.Lleyton Hewitt
Born: 24/2/81
Nationality: Australian
World ranking: 2
Wimbledon best:
Winner (2002)
Recent record:
2002: Winner
2001: 4th round
2000: 1st round
 

1.Serena Williams (winner)
Born: 26/9/81
Nationality: American
World ranking: 1
Wimbledon best:
Winner (2002)
Recent record:
2002: Winner
2001: Quarter-finals
2000: Semi-finals

 

 

2 Andre Agassi
3 Juan Carlos Ferrero
4 Roger Federer (winner)
5 Andy Roddick
6 David Nalbandian
7 Guillermo Coria
8 Sjeng Schalken
9 Rainer Schuettler
10 Tim Henman
11 Jiri Novak
12 Paradorn Srichaphan
13 Sebastien Grosjean
14 Xavier Malisse
15 Arnaud Clement
16 Mikhail Youzhny

 

2 Kim Clijsters
3 Justine Henin-Hardenne
4 Venus Williams
5 Lindsay Davenport
6 Amelie Mauresmo (withdrew)
7 Chanda Rubin
8 Jennifer Capriati
9 Daniela Hantuchova
10 Anastasia Myskina
11 Jelena Dokic
12 Magdalena Maleeva
13 Ai Sugiyama
14 Eleni Daniilidou
15 Elena Dementieva
16 Vera Zvonareva
 

tickets for 2004

 

Most tickets for Centre Court and No.1 Court are allocated through the Public Ballot. The remainder of showcourt tickets are allocated through a variety of methods such as: On the Day Sales, the LTA Ballot, LTA Affliated Organisations, Corporate Hospitality and Tour Packages and Debenture tickets (see below). All Ground tickets are sold on the day of play on the gate. As demand for tickets is usually high, large queues are expected on most days of the Championships (more information on buying tickets on the day of play).

The 2004 Public Ballot
Introduced in 1924, the AELTC Public ballot has always been substantially oversubscribed, with the main proportion of Centre and No.1 Court tickets being available in this way. The Public Ballot for the 2004 Championships closes on December 31st 2003 and no new applications will be accepted after this date.

Applying for the Ballot does not automatically entitle applicants to tickets for Wimbledon, but a place in the draw for tickets. Tickets are allocated at random to successful applicants by computer. Furthermore, it is not possible to request tickets for specific days or courts, as the day and court offered are also chosen randomly by a computerised selection process.

How to Apply for the 2004 Ballot from the United Kingdom
To enter the public ballot for Centre and No. 1 Court tickets, applicants must complete an application form and return this to AELTC by 31 December of the previous year. To obtain a form, applicants should send (from 1 August) a stamped self-addressed envelope to:

The All England Lawn Tennis & Croquet Club,
PO Box 98,
Wimbledon,
London SW19 5AE

All applications must be from the applicant's permanent residential address and the Club will accept only one application per household. Applicants may apply for a maximum of two tickets each.

How to Apply for the 2004 Ballot from outside of the United Kingdom
Overseas applicants should send a self-addressed envelope with an Internation Reply Coupon instead of a stamp. The International Reply Coupon (IRC) is obtainable from any of the larger Post Offices or equivalent. When it is received here it is exchangeable for the minimum postage for an unregistered priority item or an unregistered letter sent by air to a foreign country. The IRC has now been updated and is readily obtainable and is the same throughout Europe, USA, Australia and Japan.

Apply to the address below for an application form. Upon receipt of applications, the ticket office will send out a form which must be completed by the applicant and returned to the Club.

The All England Lawn Tennis & Croquet Club,
PO Box 98,
Wimbledon,
London SW19 5AE,
England

All applications must be from the applicant's permanent residential address and the Club will accept only one application per household. Applicants may apply for a maximum of two tickets each.

Successful Applications and Paying for Tickets
The draw will be made in January 2004 and successful applicants will be informed from February 2004 when they will be asked to forward immediate payment (by Bank or Building Society cheque) for the cost of the tickets they have drawn. If you have not heard by March 2004, assume that your application has not been successful in the main ballot. However, as declined and returned tickets are re-balloted up to the day of play, you may be offered tickets at a later stage.

The Wheelchair Ballot
Wheelchair users have a separate ballot for Show Court spaces suitable for wheelchairs.

To enter the public ballot for Centre and No. 1 Court tickets, applicants must complete an application form and return this to AELTC by 31 December of the previous year. To obtain a form, applicants should send (from 1 August) a stamped self-addressed envelope (overseas applicants may enclose an International Reply Coupon in place of a stamp) to:

The All England Lawn Tennis & Croquet Club,
PO Box 98,
Wimbledon,
London SW19 5AE

Applications should be received by 31st December 2003. Please mark the letter and envelope "WHEELCHAIR".

All applications must be from the applicant's permanent residential address and the Club will accept only one application per household. Applicants may apply for a maximum of two tickets each.

Contact Details
Please phone the Ticket Office on +4420 8971 2473, Mon - Fri 09.00 - 17.00.(GMT).

 
 

Wimbledon 2001 Men's Champion: Goran Ivanisevic

Wimbledon 2001 Ladies'   Champion: Venus Williams

 

ranking

men women
1 Sampras Hingis
2 Agassi V. Williams
3 Rafter Davenport
4 Safin Capriati
5 Hewitt S. Williams
6 Henman Mauresmo
7 Kafelnikov Clijsters
8 Ferrero Henin
9 Grosjean Tauziat
10 Enquist Dementieva
11 Johansson Coetzer
12 Gambill Maleeva
13 Clement Vicario
14 Ferreira Dokic
15 Federer Testud
16 Voltchkov Elia

 


the Editor, June 22, 2003

 



June 22, 2003

 

Sean Paul

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with

Heartless Crew (PA), Spanner Banner & Curtis Lynch Jnr, JMC performing for either one or both nights

 

ONLY UK DATES
June 26 - 27

 

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OCEAN:
270 MARE STREET
LONDON E8 1HE

 

Born Sean Paul Henriques in 1973 to a mixed parentage of Portuguese, Chinese and Jamaican origins, his mother is a renowned Jamaican artist and Sean was an accomplished athlete and scholar during his teens. His education was enough to land him a prosperous career, but dancehall reggae remained very much his first love, especially crafting rhythm tracks. His first break came in 1996 with the single Baby Girl which became a huge, opening all kinds of doors for Sean in Jamaica.

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Word of his rhythms quickly spread like wildfire in the Caribbean especially in Trinidad and Guyana. But it was the track Deport Them which gained the interest of stations in the US and from there the worldwide recognition began. Few artists can emmulate his crossover appeal because Sean maintains the tricky balance of remaining true to his underground roots whilst being a commercial success.

 

 

Currently topping the US Billboard charts with his latest single Get Busy this is the only UK date for the hottest Jamaican reggae / dancehall act at the moment. MOBO-award winning Sean Paul received phenomenal airplay last year with the massive hit Gimme the Light when no dancefloor was safe from its hip hop flavoured beats and infectious rhythms. Taken from his second album Dutty Rock the track helped push him fully into the dancehall music limelight.

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Whilst hip hop & reggae enjoys a fruitful partnership, never has Sean's moment been so now: not only is he on the edge of embarking on a 21 date tour with 50 Cent, but has also released tracks with Jay-Z, Busta Rhymes and is currently in the studio with Timbaland. All confirming him as a permanent figure in Jamaica's musical pantheon and a huge crossover star with immense international appeal.

 

 
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Ocean
270 Mare Street
Hackney
London E8.

One of London's best locations for live performances!

Tickets

June 26 -  £18.50 ($US30 approx.)in advance
(14 yrs and up) 
doors open 7pm - 12

June 27: £20 ($US32 approx.) in advance
(14 yrs and up)
doors 8pm - 3am
THE AFTERSHOW PARTY NIGHT over 18's only

Tel: +44 20 7314 2800 for tickets.

3 venues 6 bars
2,700 capacity in total
every type of music

2 minutes walk from Hackney Central Station

 


the Editor, May 29, 2003

 

 

May 29, 2003

 

Zandra Rhodes Publications
 

Now open to the public, this long awaited 'event' at the north end of fashionable South Bank, Bermondsey Street brings to an area - known typically as the home of antiques -  a more modern approach to all things of good taste. 

The museum acts as yet another catalyst to draw locals and visitors alike to this very 'hot' section of London. 

Open Tuesday through Sunday from 11.00am - 5:45pm you can feast your eyes upon a veritable Aladdin's Cave of great fashion design; which truly represents the eclectic and zany, enduring good taste of Ms Rhodes.

Located at 83 Bermondsey Street,  London SE1 the closest underground station is London Bridge. And it's just a short walk to the open Friday and Saturday 'fabulous food' on offer at Borough Market

The museum also houses a very interesting shop which offers a range of goodies on sale at sometimes less than modest prices. 

If you're looking for a one-off t-shirt this may be the place to make your purchase.  But the best thing about this museum is the visitor's ability to get up close and personal with some of the best of dress design.  See below!

 

 

Fashion and Textile Museum

 

Princess Michael of Kent opened Zandra Rhodes' long-awaited Fashion & Textile Museum in Bermondsey Street this month (May, 2003).   The Princess, (described by Ms. Rhodes as "very stylish and not given enough credit for it" member of the Royal Family), is the museum's Patron.

With such credentials expect a lot from a venue which should light up your fashion conscious eyes.  

The museum's debut exhibition 'My Favourite Dress'. features - among  many other iconic outfits -  the dress worn last year by Halle Berry to the Oscar Ceremony in 2002.

It's just one of many sensational outfits and the layout of the dresses -  as they float and rotate - allows you to see the true craft behind the designer.  And some of these dresses really are exquisite. 

You can literally imagine the outfits being worn at some fabulous event.  But unfortunately we are not always told who wore them or for what occasion.  A photo image of the dress 'in action' would have done much to enhance this most enjoyable exhibition.

But this new museum is one that visitors should add to their to  do list next time they are in town!

 

 

 

Zandra Rhodes design

1976
The Conceptual Chic or Punk Collection
jersey with beaded safety pins, holes, and chains

Photo: Clive Arrowsmith

 

Museum founder, Zandra Rhodes, who lives in the distinctive pink warehouse conversion designed by Mexican Ricardo Legorreta, invited 72 top fashion industry names to select their favourite dress.

Lebanese designer Elie Saab chose the Halle Berry dress.

And other star designers contributing include Donatella Versace, Domenico Dolce and Betty Jackson.   Zandra Rhodes said of the collection, "I am thrilled and honoured that so many are taking part".

don't miss out!!!


 

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Admission $US10 with concessions at $US6   {£6 and (conc. at £4).

 


the Editor, May 22, 2003

 

 


May 18, 2003

 

wpeF.jpg (166611 bytes)Jack Davenport as Toby Young

Olivia Wingate Productions and Soho Theatre Company present:

How to Lose Friends and Alienate People

at 

the Soho Theatre

through May 17, 2003

 

 

 

One of the delights of the intimate, Soho Theatre on Dean Street is that the venue acts as a showcase for an eclectic mix of performance, performance art, stand-up, comedy, drama and poetry.

Whether How to Lose Friends and Alienate People encompasses all the styles of the stage is open to question, but this sold-out show (so keep ringing for returns on the day and/or keep your eyes skinned for a possible move to another theatre) is a must for Manhattan-philes.

Based on Toby Young's hilarious bestseller recalling his disastrous stint as a Vanity Fair editor in New York, the critics have rounded upon Mr Young implying that vanity has led him to cast Jack Davenport, star of This Life, Coupling and The Talented Mr Ripley, as his 'star' in this one-man show.

How to lose friends and alienate peopleThe not-so-tall, blond and shaven/bald Mr Young may not compare visually favorably with the tall, good looking Davenport, but who can blame the author for casting the best man for the job.  Jack Davenport is almost faultless as he glides effortlessly from character to character in this 'one-man stand-up, comedy-drama'. 

The drama is the decline and fall of Toby Young from journalist to novelist?

wpe10.jpg (159874 bytes)The handsome Jack Davenport - dressed in a classic, casual, but very British business pinstripe suit looks the part as he probes into the celebrity style of NYC, whilst always managing to maintain that less than endearing British public school yobbishness!

His performance - described by my colleague Bill as mature, and indeed a faultless 90 minutes exposé of all things insincere and vacuous about celebrity life, demonstrates that Jack Davenport is a good actor, although this could be considered perfect type-casting.

PlaysToby and the New York crowd are brought to life by a seamless evening from Jack Davenport, where the most significant physical character change takes place as he takes off his glasses to metamorph into Graydon Carter, editor-in-chief of Vanity Fair: "I basically forgot to fire Toby Young every day for two years". 

I, a member of the press fraternity, and someone who slid effortlessly into the Vanity Fair A-list (although this is just a mere stepping stone to the real triple A list), and just and quickly fell from a modest height, only to re-enter briefly on several occasions, can bond with Mr Young.   The life of everyone and everything in Manhattan is transitory, and those who care eventually leave.

Therein lies the inevitable fate of all but the very few!

Adapted for the stage by Tim Fountain, writer of Julie Burchill is Away and Resident Alien, if you get a chance, don’t miss this  account of Toby Young’s fall from grace. A stand-up performance should deserve a stand-up ovation, but the quality of the writing was sometimes uneven and often left the audience short-changed.

But who can blame Toby Young for this vanity affair?

 

 

Soho Theatre
21 Dean Street
London W1

tel: +44 207 478 0142 or +447956 879165


the Editor, May 5, 2003



May 5, 2003

 

 
e14ee.jpgArt Deco 1910-1939

The Victoria & Albert Museum e1800.jpg

March 27, 2003 -  July 20, 2003

Art Deco was originally named, 'Le Moderne'.  The name instantly conjures up the mood, the style and the glamour of the Jazz Age, and the objects on display at the V&A do not only live up to expectations, but go far beyond.



Gordon Miller Buehrig: Auburn 851 'Boat Tail' Speedster

Gordon Miller Buehrig: Auburn 851 'Boat Tail' Speedster

It's a show-stopper with breathtaking, show stopping pieces of jewellery, furniture, fashion, paintings, sculpture, architecture, domestic, luxury objects and a car. But what a car! Remember the Great Gatsby; think of Isadora Duncan; ..... and you start to get the idea! The car is a 1935 Auburn 851 "Boatail" Speedster that was made for the 1935 South African Grand Prix. It is a work of art that epitomises the streamlined style and desire for speed, glamour and exotic travel that defined the period and  describes the exhibit.

This is a big exhibition, but let's take a brief tour of selected sections and highlight some of the pieces which take you back in time to the crazy days of Paris and New York in the 1920's........

Jacques-Emile Ruhlmann: dressing table. Enoch Boulton: 'Jazz', ginger jar. Jeanne Paquin: 'Chimère', evening gown.

Jacques-Emile Ruhlmann: dressing table.

Enoch Boulton: 'Jazz', ginger jar.

Jeanne Paquin: 'Chimère', evening gown.

One of the first displays sets the stage with iconic pieces. There's a Carltonware "Jazz" Ginger Jar, a Jeanne Paquin "Chimére" evening gown, a "cubic" silver coffee service, a brass and mirrored stylised woman's head, the "Lotus" dressing table, a sleek "Waterwich" outboard motor and a classy poster for Compagnes de Wagons Lits entitled "Etoile du Nord".

Sigmund Politzer, Tile

They stand alongside avant garde and exotic references to works by contemporary artists such as Picasso, Brancusi, Sonia Delauney and Léger. Two iconic female portraits by Tamara de Lempica - the most memorable being her sensual Jeune Fille en Vert of 1927 decorate the room. And Skyscraper and Tunnel of 1930 by Fortunato Depero captures the futurist's view of Manhattan and the mechanisation and dynamism of the city.

The Grand Salon of the Hotel d'un Collectionneur
(The House of a Collector) Jacques-Emile Ruhlmann

'Grand Salon', 'Hôtel du Collectionneur' Jacques-Emile Ruhlmann: 'Table araignée' Jacques-Emile Ruhlmann: 'Table araignée'

'Grand Salon', 'Hôtel du Collectionneur'

Jacques-Emile Ruhlmann: 'Table araignée'

Jacques-Emile

The next rooms are a re-creation of the famous Exposition Internationale des Arts Decoratif et Industriale Moderne held in Paris in 1925. Pavilions and displays come back to life for the first time, with objects and decors re-assembled. A black and white slide show with images from the Exposition creates a dreamy backdrop. I was awestruck by the artistic vision and the excitement of specially created illuminations for the Tour Eiffel. At the time, the Exposition was the first international style and shopping extravaganza. Apparently 16 million visitors came to Paris from all over the world. And to further set the scene of the period, archive film footage of Josephine Baker performing her famous Danse Sauvage  is quite extraordinary. - as she represents the image of all that was sensuous and exotic of 1920's Paris.

Cigarette lighter

Cigarette lighter

The objects on display have a living aura. A necklace by Jean Fouquet made in 1931 of ebony, chrome, and gold is displayed side-by-side with a Man Ray photo of a woman wearing it. When you see the glamorous cigarette cases of the 1930's made of silver, enamel and lacquer, it is obvious why smoking was so sexy at that time. And the beauty of some classic onyx and diamond Cartier jewellery, (then as today), is the ultimate statement of originality and elegance.

In the 1920's they didn't believe in faux anything. The sheer decadence and innovative design of Denham McClaren's 1931 glass, metal and zebra skin chair is worth more than a few minutes of contemplation. But, for glamour and sophistication the star piece is the partially reconstructed Strand Palace Hotel Foyer.

Bernard: partial reconstruction of the foyer of the Strand Palace Hotel, London. Glass, marble, metallic mount and fixturesBernard: partial reconstruction of the foyer of the Strand Palace Hotel, London. Glass, marble, metallic mount and fixtures Oliver Bernard: partial reconstruction of the foyer of the Strand Palace Hotel, London. Glass, marble, metallic mount and fixtures. 1930-1. V&A: Circ.758-1969. Plate 20.13.Strand Palace Hotel Foyer

This alluring 1930's Art Deco entrance to London's most famous luxury hotel was saved by the V&A from destruction in 1969. This is the first time it has been put back together and it comes to life complete with a mannequin making a grand entrance wearing a 1939 Schiaperelli evening coat.

Strand Palace FoyerStrand Palace FoyerStrand Palace Foyer

As we wandered through the exhibition there is a growing desire for the elegance, style and taste of an era long gone. Jaded   journalists (on press day) were a study of envy as they stared at the divine evening dresses by Chanel, Lanvin and a beautiful sequinned crepe dress from Patou, and then gazed enviously at fabulous furniture, ornaments and much more.

 

Eileen Gray (Irish): screen. Lacquer on wood, with silver leaf veneer. 207 x 435 x 1.7 cm (each panel: 207 x 54 x 1.7 cm). French, 1928. V&A: W.40-1977. Lacquer panels from a shrine. Lacquer on wood. 153.5 x 34.5 cm; 153.5 x 35 cm; 148.5 x 37.5 cm; 148.5 x 36.8 cm. Japanese, 19th century. V&A: W.1A/9-1913, W.1A/10-1913, W.1A/11-1913 and W.1A/12-1913.

Inspiration from the East
Eileen Gray (Irish): screen and Lacquer panels from a shrine.

 

Crossing over into the next gallery the sound of jazz music sets the mood of the pleasure palaces, hotels, cocktail bars, night clubs and cinemas that were in the Art Deco swing all around the world. And around the world the exhibition goes with posters for all the modern comforts and glamour of travel by trains, automobiles and the most luxurious of all, the ocean liner.

Norman Bel Geddes: Patriot, radio, model 400

Norman Bel Geddes: 'Patriot', radio, model 400

Now, for all of you bag lovers and as all my friends know this includes your truly, take a deep breath before you read the following description! What does every glamorous person need for that luxury trip across the Atlantic? How about a 1925 Louis Vuitton Travel Case made of wood, crocodile, lizard, tortoiseshell, morocco leather, crystal, silver, chamois leather and brass.

 

Cassandre (Adolphe Mouron): Nord Express, poster Roger Broders: Marseille: Porte de l'Afrique du Nord, poster J. R. Tooby: Empress of Britain, Canadian Pacific Railways, poster

Cassandre (Adolphe Mouron): Nord Express, poster

Roger Broders: Marseille: Porte de l'Afrique du Nord, poster

J. R. Tooby: Empress of Britain, Canadian Pacific Railways, poster

Finally, the Art Deco journey moves across the Atlantic to the USA with images of the New York skyline and skyscrapers. There is a 1935 architectural model of Rockefeller Center, which is a very large and beautiful object in itself. 

Ruth Reeves: 'Manhattan', furnishing fabricRuth Reeves: 'Manhattan', furnishing fabric.

 

Horace Taylor: 'The Royal Mail Line to New York' Horace Taylor: 'The Royal Mail Line to New York', poster Edward Steichen: 'Spectacles'.poster.Edward Steichen: 'Spectacles'.

Then the exhibit goes   Hollywood with class and style exemplified by footage from the 1934 film the Gay Divorcee starring Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers.

It's easy to see why everyone finds something to love about Art Deco. The style was truly global and transformed the look of everyday living in the modern world.

Norman Bel Geddes: 'Patriot', radio, model 400.

Of course the party was over in 1939 with the start of World War II and the shift to austerity and functionality. As a result, the splendour and flamboyance of Art Deco fell out of favor ....... but while it lasted, it was the stuff that dreams were made of.

A truly fabulous exhibition, this one must be added to the 'mobbed' list. And the radio and television programmes dedicated to the V&A exhibition and the whole Art Deco style will have already wetted the appetites of all those with 'good taste'!.

I cannot recommend it highly enough.

 

About Art Deco

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Josephine Baker, international star of sensational, exotic cabarets including La Revue Nègre, and the infamous Folies Bergère in Paris and Berlin, was born on 3 June 1906 in St Louis, Missouri. During their short-lived marriage her parents had a song and dance act; her mother being known for ability to 'do the cakewalk', dancing along a chalk-line with a glass of water balanced on her head and never spilling a drop. Josephine's father, Eddie Carson, was a drummer who played in bands in saloons, vaudeville houses and brothels.

Josephine Baker was only one year old when her parents introduced her into the finale of their stage act. By the age of 14, with a huge repertoire of steps, she began her career in the chorus line of the Booker T. Washington Theatre, St. Louis. By 1925, aged 19, Josephine Baker was shimmying and dancing the Charleston in La Revue Nègre, in Paris, bowing her legs and crossing her eyes at the same time as 'scatting' to the music.

Throughout her life, Josephine Baker adored and was constantly surrounded by menageries of animals. She had learned early in her poor childhood to be mistrustful of people, and began her lifelong habit of showering affection on animals by befriending and sharing her food with Three Legs, the crippled dog of her unkind employer. Her dancing was described by reviewers in animal terms; she was a kangaroo, a panther, a monkey, a tropical bird. In fact, she claimed she learned to dance by watching the kangaroos in St. Louis Zoo. This might have been true as many of the black dances of the day were based on imitating animal movement, such as the turkey trot, the kangaroo dip, the bunny hug and the rooster strut.

In sharp contrast to the hardships of her early life, by 1925 Josephine Baker had her own nightclub, Chez Josephine, in Paris. Here she shared her dressing room with a goat called Toutoute. In the club kitchen lived her pig, Albert, whom Josephine doused with the Worth perfume Je Reviens. Albert thrived on the kitchen scraps and there was a time when the kitchen doorway had to be broken down to get him out.

Most famously, Josephine Baker was joined in her act at the Casino de Paris by a cheetah, Chiquita, a gift from Henri Varna, the club's owner. Varna's idea was that the cheetah would complement perfectly Josephine's image; half exotic, untamed creature; half elegant beauty and sophistication. Josephine adored Chiquita, buying him a diamond choker and taking him everywhere with her. Pepito, Josephine's lover and manager, did not go along with her delight in Chiquita, who shared their bed, car and holidays.

Diana Vreeland, famous editor of Harper's Bazaar and Vogue in the 1930's, has a wonderful anecdote about Josephine and Chiquita. One very hot July, Diana Vreeland had gone to a Montmartre film theatre to see a film, L'Atlantique, about lost Foreign Legion soldiers in a desert oasis. The delirious soldiers dreamed of the beautiful Queen of the Lost Continent who was surrounded by a fountain of champagne with basking cheetahs. When the lights went up in the theatre, Diana Vreeland was shocked and delighted to find she was sitting next to Chiquita. Josephine had brought the beautiful animal for an outing to see the cheetahs in the film. Outside the hot theatre, an enormous white and silver Rolls Royce was waiting for Josephine Baker and Chiquita. Diana Vreeland describes how the driver opened the car door, Josephine let go of the cheetah's lead, Chiquita whooped and took one elongated leap into the back of the Rolls Royce, with Josephine Baker in her couture Vionnet dress leaping


e16fd.jpg

The V&A is open daily from 10:00 am to 5:45 pm with late opening on Wednesday and the last Friday of the month until 10:00 pm. There are additional late openings especially for Art Deco on Friday and Saturday until 10:00 pm from June 27 until July 19.

Entrance to the V&A and its permanent collections is free. The charge for Art Deco is £8.00 (US$13) for adults and £5.00 (US$8) for students and free to under 18's.

The nearest underground is South Kensington. The V&A is located next to the Science Museum and Natural History Museum both of which definitely deserve a visit.

 


Janis, Visual Arts Editor, April 7, 2003

 

April 7, 2003

 

 

ROYAL BOTANIC GARDENS - KEW

Ninth Annual Orchid Festival – In Search of Paradise

February 15 – March 16, 2003



Spring to Life – Three Months of Flowering Splendour

March 29 – 11 May 11, 2003




 

I went to Kew Gardens specifically to see the orchids displayed in the Princess of Wales Conservatory. However, from the moment of my arrival, I was diverted by all the wonderful things to see in the gardens themselves. The glories of Kew change with the seasons, but there is always something interesting to discover.


Crocus Carpet

On this particular visit the Crocus carpet was in full bloom. Over a million purple and white crocus had been planted into the lawns of Kew Gardens. It was magnificent! Not only for it’s sheer beauty, but also as a first sign that spring is just around the corner?

2003 celebrates the ninth annual orchid festival at Kew. So, if you miss it this time around, try to make it next year.

Orchids are exquisite, mysterious and sensuous flowers. They range from cool white and pale pink to deep fuchsia and soft mauve. The Kew orchid collection is the most important and diverse in the world. This year’s display of flowers find themselves intertwined with the lush green foliage of the conservatory , thereby creating the desired effect of a tropical earthly paradise. The atmosphere of the Princess of Wales conservatory is warm and misty which adds to the exotic drama of the nearly half million orchids on show.

The informative and educational guide boards throughout the display tell the fascinating story of orchids and orchid hunters. For example, did you know that in Victorian times, orchid hunters lived a life full of excitement and danger as they headed out to far ends of the earth to discover new species and bring them back to the west. And in the 1800’s, orchids were the "must have" accessory!

Someone named Joe Kunisch apparently said, "You can get off alcohol, drugs, women, food and cars but once you’re hooked on orchids you’re finished". Think about it!

And for a change of tone......., if you are intrigued by exotic fish and reptiles there are some fantastic ones on display at Kew. Discover an African crab that is the most extraordinary shades of orange and purple. Or spot the Poison Dart Frog - a tiny little frog is an amazing shade of iridescent blue. And for even more colorful, exotic fish go to the Marine display in the Palm House.

The end of March reveals the next seasonal theme. 'Spring to Life" opens with the Daffodil walk and other highlights include special Easter Events; an exhibit on beer making called 'Something’s Brewing at Kew'; an exhibition on DNA in the garden; and a look at tradition and folklore in Woodland Wonders and Bluebells in bloom.


Daffodil  Walk


Kew Gardens is just a short walk from Kew Gardens underground station. The gardens are open daily from 9:30am until 5:30 pm. Admission is $12 (£7.50) for adults and free for children under 16 years.

 


Janis, Visual Arts Editor, March 13, 2003

 

March 13, 2003

 

Manolo Blahnik

Design Museum

February 1  to  May 11, 2003

Manolo Blahnik
Photographer: Michael Roberts


If you could never really understand the fashionista’s catch phrase ‘to die for’ up until now… you certainly will once you have been to this retrospective of Manolo Blahnik’s shoes!

 

A satirical self-portrait by Manolo Blahnik, 2000

When you enter this exhibition you are greeted by a wall of shoeboxes, which holds a single glass case displaying one of Manolo’s signature shoes. The shoe is a high-heeled, strappy sandal made with real red coral straps. It was exquisite .....and there were hundreds more just around the corner!

 

MANOLO BLAHNIK
Giacinto, 1992
Illustration: Manolo Blahnik

Shoes, shoes and more shoes mixed with design, colour and fashion history.

The exhibit is arranged by decade from the 1960’s through today, and with a few sneak previews of Autumn/Winter 2003 as well.

Each decade is a succession of beautiful shoes, sandals and boots. There are high heels, kitten heels, and flats made of leather, suede, silk, fur, beads and brocade. And every shoe is a unique fusion of craftsmanship, engineering and sculpture.

 

Manolo Blahnik's shop on Old Church Street, Chelsea, London, 1998
Photographer: Pamela Hansen
Copyright: Vogue

Blahnik has made tens of thousands of shoes over the past 30 years. And each decade in this show represents Manolo’s contributiomn to the era's design and fashion inspirations. In the 1970’s he created shoes for the British designers Ossie Clark, Jean Muir and Zandra Rhodes. In the 1980’s he designed shoes for Perry Ellis, Calvin Klein and Rifat Ozbek. And more recently he has worked with John Galliano for Christian Dior.

 

Isabel, 2000
Illustration: Manolo Blahnik

Manolo Blahnik is the haute couture shoemaker. His shoes are worn by celebrities and style gurus everywhere. And there they are in all their glory for you to enjoy and fantasize about which ones you would like to have in your closet!

 

MANOLO BLAHNIK
Elizabeth, first designed in 1994 and repeated in 1999
Illustration: Manolo Blanik

This exhibition is pure foot fantasy. The downside is that you can look but not touch. And luckily you can’t buy? Otherwise my credit card definitely would not have survived! This is a fun exhibition whether you go for the design or the desire!

Ossie, a later version of a shoe designed for Ossie Clark in 1972
Illustration: Manolo Blahnik

 


The Design Museum on Shad Thames, London SE1 2YD.

The Museum is open daily from10 am until 5:45 pm. Admission is £6/$10 for adults.

Nearest underground stations are Tower Bridge or London Bridge. From Tower Bridge station it’s a 10 minute walk over Tower Bridge and from London Bridge station it’s a 15 minute walk along the riverside past HMS Belfast and the newly opened Lord Mayors Building.

 

 

Janis, Visual Arts Editor, February 18, 2003

 

February 18, 2003

 

wpe17.jpg (51969 bytes)

 


Julia Morris

standup at

The Soho Theatre

February 17-22, 2003

 


  Post Script
  Miss Morris tested out some new material on Press Night.  It made for an unlikely match.  The usual fast and furious discussions about British men (and their shortcomings) were replaced by a look at the less fortunate. 

A US tour that Julia Morris took with some 'physically challenged' kids obviously left an impact; but the fast patter lacked the requisite pathos. 

As one of the most difficult levels of humor to present in the stand-up format, Morris' good intentions didn't entirely pay off.  But die-hard fans remained loyal and enthusiastic and no doubt in time the material will fit the new look!

the editor, February 18, 2003

**********************

Last time we went too see 'brunette' Julia Morris in her stand-up 'Show and Tell' at the Soho Theatre we reviewed the show as follows:

Leaving little opportunity to catch her breath, we were invited to enjoy an insider's view of an Australian living in London. Morris started off by reminding us that her ancestors were sent to Australia as a punishment.  The beautiful climate seemed a strange form of punishment to an Aussie, but we Brits know there is nowhere else in the world like London! After all, not many cultures invite ongoing criticism about the men, the weather, ...in fact, almost everything.  But if you can't laugh at yourself, who can you laugh at?

 

 

wpe1B.jpg (23935 bytes)This February, the seemingly now blonde Morris is giving us a taste of her new show Julia Morris Live.  I 'm sure we'll discover everything about the Aussie's life and perhaps whether Gentleman really do prefer blondes?  Ana all at the Soho Theatre for a six night run...

So grit your teeth and enjoy the best in international, awardwinning stand-up.......... 

 

And there's much more in comedy coming up at the theatre including Robert Newman in From Caliban to Taliban- 500 years of humanitarian intervention; Andrew Clover's Birthday Party; Pam Ann in Busy, Busy, Busy; Brendon Burns in No Hidden Agenda.... and much more.  So for some jaw aching, belly stretching exercise ...........

Theatre Editor, January 28, 2003

 

Soho Theatre and Writers' Centre
21 Dean Street
London W1
tel: +44 207 478 01oo

 

January 28, 2003

 

Tomorrow's Apples (5 in White) 1965

 


Eva Hesse

at Tate Modern

 

through March 9, 2003

 


Shortly before her death, Eva Hesse described her subject as ‘the total absurdity of life’. Indeed, one of the chief characteristics of her work is a vein of subtle humour that runs from the self-deprecating, abject quality of her early self-portraits to the quirky fetishism and playful repetitions of her later sculpture. Yet in other ways her achievement could not be more serious. Working in what was then very much a man’s world, she pursued her ambition to become a great artist with single-minded determination. Hesse readily absorbed the influences of Surrealism, Conceptualism and Minimalism, always filtering them though her own distinctive sensibility to produce a unique and highly individualistic body of work.

Untitled 1966

Untitled  1966
Ink and pencil on paper
29.9 x 22.9 cm
Courtesy Galerie Hauser & Wirth, Zurich
© Estate of Eva Hesse

She is indeed a true find.  As this exhibit so easily demonstrates, an artist who dies at such a young age but produces such original artwork with such vigour, leaves us to only speculate how her work may have developed.  The collection on display at Tate Modern gives us a substantial insight into her original use of material.

The work looks stunning and her humor surrounds you.

Born in Germany in 1936 Hesse died at the young age of 34 in 1970.

Untitled 1965

During her career, she continually experimented with new processes and materials, which included the use of string, resin and latex, in order to push the boundaries of art, moving beyond definitions of figuration or abstraction. Combining both rigidity and pliability, the machine-made and the hand-crafted, hard geometric abstraction and soft organic curves, her work refuses to be categorised. As Hesse herself commented: ‘The drawings could be called paintings legitimately, and a lot of my sculpture could be called paintings, and a lot of it could be called nothing - a thing or any object or any new word that you want to give it.’

Spanning a period of just ten years, Hesse created a considerable legacy of work that was respected as much by fellow artists and critics during her lifetime, as it continues to influence artists to this day. Sadly, many of the experimental materials that she used subsequently turned out to be very fragile. The works assembled for this exhibition include her early drawings and paintings, the painted reliefs, and many of the astonishing sculptures for which she is best known. A number of these have never been seen in the UK, allowing visitors a unique opportunity to explore the work of one of the most important sculptors of the late twentieth century.

Hesse's studio during her stay in Germany was in an abandoned textile factory, strewn with remnants of cord and old machinery. She began to draw these machine parts, subtly transforming them from industrial objects into organic, quasi-anatomical shapes. Although some remain quirky and machine-like, others develop a more lyrical, erotic quality. In March 1965, Hesse described these drawings to her friend, the artist Sol LeWitt, as 'clean, clear - but crazy like machines, forms larger and bolder, articulately described. So it is weird. They become real nonsense.'

Untitled 1965

Untitled  1965
Drawing and gouache on paper
Unique
496 x 647 mm
Tate. Purchased 1986
© Estate of Eva Hesse

Tomorrow's Apples (5 in White) 1965

Tomorrow's Apples (5 in White)  1965
Enamel, gouache and mixed media on board
65.4 x 55.6 x 15.9 cm
Tate. Purchased 1979
© Estate of Eva Hesse

While developing the drawings of machine parts and cord fragments that lay around her studio floor, Hesse began to experiment with the materials themselves, collaging them into three-dimensional reliefs. Starting with a rectangle of chip board or Masonite, she built up the surface with plaster, papier mâché, machine parts, cord, wire and paint. The sexually ambiguous forms and whimsical titles (chosen by Hesse and Doyle together) lend a playful element to these works. Ringaround Arosie (1965) was described by Hesse in a letter to Sol LeWitt as 'both breast and penis'. She gave the piece its title after hearing the news that her friend Rosie Goldman was pregnant.

Ringaround Arosie 1965

Ringaround Arosie  1965
Pencil, acetone, varnish, enamel, paint, ink and cloth-covered electrical wire on papier-mâché and Masonite
67 x 41.9 x 11.4 cm
Courtesy Martin Bernstein, Birmingham, Michigan
© Estate of Eva Hesse
Photocredit: Courtesy The Estate of Eva Hesse. Galerie Hauser & Wirth, Zurich

The reliefs have a painterly quality. In painting, however, perspective is generally used to suggest space within a two-dimensional format, while these works emerge out of the flat picture plane and into the three-dimensional space of the viewer. In C-Clamp Blues (1965), Hesse goes a step further, playing with texture, space and gravity to create a sexually suggestive image that literally bursts out of its confines and reaches out from the wall towards the floor.

Hang Up 1966

Hang Up  1966
Acrylic paint on cloth over wood; acrylic paint on cord over steel tube
182.9 x 213.4 x 198.1 cm
The Art Institute of Chicago, Through Prior Gifts of Arthur Keating and Mr and Mrs Edward Morris
© Estate of Eva Hesse

Returning to New York in 1965, Hesse took her experiments with reliefs to new extremes before focussing on free-standing sculpture. She considered Hang Up (1966) to be her 'most important early statement'. A great loop of wire, protruding from the empty frame, swerves out towards the viewer, as if trying to scoop up the space in front of it. The absurdity of this pictureless picture is further enhanced by the obsessive bandaging of the frame and wire with cloth. Hesse described it as 'the most ridiculous structure that I ever made and that is why it is really good. It has a kind of depth I don't always achieve and that is the kind of depth or soul or absurdity or life or meaning or feeling or intellect that I want to get.'

Untitled or Not Yet 1966

Untitled or Not Yet  1966
Net bags, clear polyethylene sheeting,
paper, metal weights, and string
180.3 x 39.4 x 21 cm
San Fransisco Museum of Modern Art,
Purchased Through a Gift of Phyllis Wattis
© Estate of Eva Hesse
Photocredit: Courtesy The Estate of Eva Hesse
Galerie Hauser & Wirth, Zurich

Hesse knew many of the artists associated with Minimal and Conceptual art, such as Sol LeWitt, Robert Smithson and Mel Bochner. At the same time, she was absorbed by Surrealism, sharing its fascination with psychoanalysis and sexuality. Her fetishistic, sexually-suggestive shapes bound tightly with cord echo the works of Surrealist artists Hans Bellmer and Man Ray. Untitled or Not Yet (1966), shows Hesse experimenting with new materials, and with ideas associated with gravitational pull and concealment.

Ingeminate 1965

Ingeminate  1965
Enamel paint, cord, and papier-mâché over
two balloons connected with surgical hose
Each balloon: 55.9 x 11.4  Hose: 365.8 cm
Daros Collection, Switzerland
© Estate of Eva Hesse
Photocredit: Courtesy The Estate of Eva Hesse
Galerie Hauser & Wirth, Zurich

I recommend that anyone who is interested in modern art/sculpture and the use of original materials - many of which are almost translucent, should take a look at this exhibit.  It's much more impressive in the flesh!

Arts Editor, December 15, 2002

 

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