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Monthly Archives: October 2014

Watched Beasts of the Southern Wild, wierd film about the other,  ecocatastrophe, marginalization, alienation but Lars Von Trier does this better.   Peter Bradshaw reviews Beasts of the Southern Wild for the Guardian newspaper.   Zizeks ‘Absolute Recoil‘ from the library and now waiting to be read.



Painting as performance 5

This painting is starting to remind me of these exquisite paintings produced by Indian Bhuddist monk.


Small scale, hand painted, Indian painting


Painting as performance 4


painting as performance 3

Woops – it’s probably better to keep the orientation consistent.

Painting as performance!


Painting as performance 2


Painting as performance 1

Greyson Perry, Who Are You? on Channel 4 – new series.  Really brilliant programme, intelligent, thoughtful, questioning, Perry is a very good interviewer/host/journalist/artist.  28 days left to watch online.  Mark Lawson reviews the programme for The Guardian newspaper.



Current painting based on an image of The Apple Core/Dumbell Nebula.

After hearing excerpts from  Philip Larkin Art, Life and Love by James Booth I borrowed the book and have just finished reading it.  Although I don’t particularly like or take any interest in poetry I found it an enjoyable read.  There is quite a lot about how his poems were constructed, interesting for those who are interested in such things.  Larkin lived his life in the way that he wanted and his decades long, long term girlfriend(s) just had to live the shared parts of their lives on his terms.  Snog, marry, avoid AVOID AVOID AVOID… they should have dumped this selfish and self centered man IMO.  Larkin was certainly a materialist and realist, not an idealist.  Somewhere in the book he says that there’s something wrong with his head (not his brain or his mind) A nihist maybe?   He certainly didn’t believe in religion or the afterlife.   Blake Morrison writes a review for the Guardian.  Here’s a link to The Philip Larkin Society if anyone would like to join.

From an explanation of Art and Objecthood by Michael Fried:

‘Fried on Theatricality, Minimalism and Objecthood

In his 1967 essay “Art and Objecthood”, Fried posited that Minimalism (what he referred to as “literalism”) was compromising the quality of art because such technique was too literal in its meaning, too theatrical, and ultimately an impure practice. In the essay he wrote, “..the literalist espousal of objecthood amounts to nothing other than a plea for a new genre of theatre; and theatre is now the negation of art.”

Fried objected to the work of Minimalist sculptors like Donald Judd, Sol LeWitt and Dan Flavin, because of their clear love for the fundamental materiality of the work, which resulted in an interactive experience for the viewer. This was, according to Fried, a form of mixed media, in which art and theater commingled to the point where the work ceased to be art, and ultimately was revealed to be merely an object. This “theatricality” in Minimalist sculpture, Fried believed, relegated the work of the literalists to the realm of “anti-art.” Such installations, as they eventually became, failed to achieve purity because they failed to properly distinguish between the art and the object.

One Minimalist sculptor who was in Fried’s favor was Anthony Caro, whose work Fried believed maintained that ever-important differentiation between art and object. According to Fried, Caro’s work sustained an internal coherence between art and media. Caro achieved this by painting his sculptures with a flat, non-reflective coat of monochromatic paint, both uniting the discrete parts of the piece and asserting a self-sufficient autonomy from its surroundings. Unlike the literalists, Fried believed, Caro did not draw attention to the objecthood (the materiality) of his works.’

My next painting is underway:


Current painting based on an image of The Apple Core/Dumbell Nebula.


Okay – this is what I’ve gleaned from Michael Fried’s  Art and Objecthood Essay:  Errr I’ve forgotten what I was going to say – doh!

I’m attempting to read Michael Fried’s essay, Art and Objecthood, and trying to understand exactly what he’s saying.  In comparing modernist paintings and sculpture with minimalist work apparently minimalism deals with a single entity (object) that does not simply consist of the sum of it’s parts.  In the opinion of Donald Judd and Robert Morris minimalist works overcomes this ‘sum of it’s parts’ problem that they view as anthromorphism.  I don’t quite understand because looking at Judd’s work for example:  Untitled 1980 I see one artwork but it’s made of several parts.  Only certain objects would consist of a single part eg. a sphere that has a single surface.  Maybe it’s a matter of topology.  Somehow this connects to Hegel’s Dialectic.


Untitled 1980, Donald Judd

Busy, very wet, visit to Greenwich yesterday.

Went to see The Cutty Sark, the worlds fastest clipper in her day.


The Cutty Sark

Fantastic rigging.


Cutty Sark Rigging

But the museum part of the visit was a bit disappointing as there is a lot of repetition.  I enjoyed the collection of ship’s figureheads in the dry dock.


Figureheads-Cutty Sark Museum

We then went to Flamsteed House and the meridian courtyard to have a look at the oldest object you will ever touch


This is the oldest thing you will ever touch, a 4.55 billion year old meteorite

(and the telescopes).  There was some sort of art thing going on with modern stuff mixed up with the genuine artifacts.  I thought that this was really horrible and very confusing.  Punk’d – I don’t understand the point of this rubbish!.  In fact I’m outraged by the mixing up of history and science with this absolute tripe!!!  Here is a review by Heloise Finch-Boyer (who?) for The Guardian Newspaper.  This explains the rationale but I don’t think that Heloise is convinced by this exhibition either.

The Astronomical Photographer of the Year exhibition is on.  Oh no – it’s just more of the same old stuff.  My resident astronomer’s work stacks up pretty well against these images and it was also more interesting being able to understand how the images were obtained (equipment, setting, timings etc.)

The first Planetarium show Captured Starlight used the Astronomical Photographer of the year photographs as its theme.  Unfortunately this didn’t really work for me.   Projecting 2-D photographs onto a curved surface didn’t work and the huge magnification drained the images of colour.

More sucessful was the second planetarium show, Dark Universe.  I found this much more interesting.  Some thing that had been puzzling me were explained visually such as why, wherever you are in the universe, all objects seem to be moving away from you.

Lastly I attended a Flamsteed Society lecture Pictures in the Sky by Ian Ridpath.  The topic of this lecture was the constellations and how they came to be named.  What a brilliant lecture by an excellent lecturer!  Thank you Ian Ridpath.