Yesterday we had meetings in central London and were on a day mission: OPERATION OBTAIN VISAS. The absolute worst part about travelling is obtaining the elusive visa, or so it seems…with so much fine print and hours spent listening to automated voice messages, then giving up, making your way into the city to visit the embassies in person, only to be faced with queues, the information that the visa department is actually only open between 8am and 9am on Thursdays and every second Friday [or some such bizarrre information], and being given another phone number to call. This done in drizzle can only lead you to a strong, burnt coffee in a tiny Italian shop called “Bon Gusto”…to make you warm and buzzing with caffeine and full of gusto. We abandoned mission, headed to the TATE Modern, and simply immersed ourselves in art, took in the view of St Pauls from the top for a good amount of the afternoon, and had a fun walk back to Waterloo Station taking self photos, giggling, being silly, and feeling like we were on honeymoon…even on a grey day when we were supposed to get Shengan and Korean visa applications and information…
Some of my favourites at TATE Modern:
“Thirty pieces of silver” by Cornelia Parker, is an installation of thirty discs suspended just above the ground, made up of individual pieces of silver, which she found at markets and in antique shops [cutlery, silver plates, tobacco holders, eyeglass rims, trumpets…]. The artist laid them out on a street and organised for a steam roller to flatten every item. She then arranged them into coin-like circles, and every single item is hung individually to create thirty seeming discs hanging from the ceiling. It echoes Julias Iscariot’s betrayal of Jesus for just thirty pieces of silver. Phenomenal.
Picasso’s “The Kiss”…simple pencil on paper…but it reminds me of the passionate and desperate first kiss of couples in love…which usually isn’t smooth and neat and ordered like on the screen, but usually messy, disheveled and rather grotesque in a wonderful kind of way. I had puffed up, natural cherry red lips for an hour after my first kiss…
“Red Room” is an artist’s room belonging to Robert Thierrien…and is exquisite to look in to! He started collecting red items years and years ago…until people cottoned on and started adding to his collection too. This room is full of the most unusual objects, all red obviously, not one dash of white ot any other colour…wool, ribbon, red plastic swans, red rainboots, candy, watering can, anything you could think of really! Such fun.
Two walls with framed photos of artist Roni Horn’s niece, Georgia, entitled “This is me, this is you.” It is made up of 96 chromogenic prints showing the little girl off in different settings, with glasses, without glasses, with different facial expressions, and different clothes. So simple, and so effective.
The artist’s room belonging to Andy Warhol, covered in his famous cow wallpaper and some of his effective lithographic-like works standing in strong contrast.
A room full of Soviet Union street posters, framed, from floor to ceiling was invigorating, overwhelming and awful. The propaganda seemed to reach out from the walls…but what awesome design. Our election posters seem dull and wimpish in comparison.