Crystalline art

Last weekend I went to see Josiah McElheny’s ‘The Crystal Land’ exhibition at Bermondsey’s White Cube. Among the items in this collection were his series of ‘paintings’ consisting of glass domes and pillars set inside gem-shaped, mirrored window boxes (not shown): Looking inside these structures, I was reminded of what it’s like to stare down a cathedral nave – ad infinitum – or of the Wizard … Continue reading Crystalline art

Performing monkeys 🐵 🙊

aspiration and objectification in Black Mirror, Old Masters and social media I hadn’t heard of art critic John Berger before news of his death broke a few days ago. Today I happened upon this interesting article about his critical legacy in the field of the artistic treatment of women. What hooked me in was the initial quotation: A woman is always accompanied, except when quite … Continue reading Performing monkeys 🐵 🙊

Wtf is the ‘meaning of life’?!

Those of us lucky enough, over the festive period, to be able to sink into the loving embrace of the sofa beside an open fire, glass of port in hand, belly full of turkey and Thornton’s, and surrounded by loving relatives, might be tempted to proclaim that ‘this is what it’s all about’. The meaningful life consists in the cosiness of affection, security and slight … Continue reading Wtf is the ‘meaning of life’?!

6 semi-funny philosophy quotes with pictures

Here are some mildly amusing things some philosophers said: You’re all ANIMALS the mass of mankind are evidently quite slavish in their tastes, preferring a life suitable to beasts – Aristotle, Nicomachean Ethics Salespeople are PATHETIC In well-ordered States they are commonly those who are the weakest in bodily strength, and therefore of little use for any other purpose – Plato, Republic Catholics are BIGOTS … Continue reading 6 semi-funny philosophy quotes with pictures

Sylvanian decadence @ National Gallery

This post is about art and therefore requires a poncy title. George Shaw is the National Gallery’s current painter-in-residence, and we wandered into his exhibition the other day while trying to find some Klimt. The Telegraph was lukewarm (even though the guy was nominated for the Turner Prize), but I really liked it! In a short video played on loop in one of the exhibition … Continue reading Sylvanian decadence @ National Gallery

[1-year Blogiversary]

What a year of thought-provoking reflections, hilarity, and insightful commentary it’s been. I’ve enjoyed thinking about interesting stuff, being a tiny bit controversial, arguing with other writers, researching history, failing at social media marketing, and cultivating a nice-looking patch of internet with which to express myself. In honour of the occasion, here are my top 10 click-generators, top 5 undervalued articles, and a sneak preview … Continue reading [1-year Blogiversary]

Midsummer jollity at the Globe

I first encountered A Midsummer Night’s Dream while reading Ballet Shoes as a child. The three Fossil sisters are enrolled at stage school, where reluctant actress Petrova is nearly fired from her role as the fairy Mustard-Seed in the play, after repeatedly struggling to intone correctly the very simple line ‘And I’. Yesterday I saw a hilarious and mad production of the play at the Globe. It … Continue reading Midsummer jollity at the Globe

Bad taste & good art

“I just don’t get why you want to keep me away from her, though?!” “Alright, I’ll tell ya! I slept with her, din’t I?” Dum, dum, dum dum dum dum-dum-dum-dum – And the Eastenders credits roll down on yet another cliff-hanger. There’s something in the overly dramatic ending that causes a little cringe. It’s the same, sometimes, in books: At the sudden knock on the … Continue reading Bad taste & good art