So my friend Christine dragged me up to London town this Thursday cos she wanted to see the Lego show at the old LegoBrick Lane brewery http://artofthebrick.co.uk/
It was a really beautiful show in which US artist Nathan Sawaya made it clear that ‘art is not optional*’ it’s essential.
*(Mr Grovel and all them other private school muts in Parliamunt take note. But of course they won’t. Stop now Pete, it’s their loss they don’t know the value of art socially, culturally, educationally, spiritually and loads of other ‘allys’.)
So the show of what can be made from lego by the expert hand of a man who learned to grow as he went thru the making process is a cracker. I took some images on my little mobile so I shall let some speak for the show.
Next we were walking from Brick Lane t’ward the Whitechapel and saw a ‘new’ (2 years old there) Stolen Space gallery with wonder-full work by Italian artist Pixel Pancho. His paintings are good but his sculptures are great.
I loved the ‘robot’ with light bulbs for a stomach and the chair with his character carved in the wood. Through in the other space was work by David Bray. A strange mix of linear images and colour geometries set in ‘rough wooden’ frames like the one I put my portrait of Marlon Brando The Godfather in the early 1970s. Always ahead of my time.
In the Whitechapel there was a room of tings from the V-A-C collection, Moscow. I was particularly taken by the film of an Estonian called Jan Toomik wherein he dances to Hendrix’s Voodoo Child near his father’s grave. It’s called Dancing With My Father.
And I was watching him and I thought wow, he dances like what I do. A treat the folk who come to my ‘talk’ at BABE on Sunday 12th April will not forget. Reminds me that the day Hendrix died I took a sheet of black paper and drew him in white chalk from a photo on an album sleeve.lego jimi
I loved his Fly Oh My Sweet Angel track. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=83OD6JTe5pg
Then the treat of the day. We found a bookshop I was looking for which wasn’t a bookshop at all. http://www.fourcornersbooks.co.uk/ in Artillery Lane was my aim and I thought I’d find a bookshop selling artists books. In fact I found something even bettererer. A gallery called Raven Row http://www.ravenrow.org/current/ which featured a show of actual artworks themselves featured in 5 copies of Studio International! In 1972 my mother sent me a cheque for £20 to help me buy food at college and I spent it on a year’s subscription to Studio International. I still have them!
It was good to see Flanagan’s early sculptures and even better to see the books and all which John Latham had stuck to a canvas in one of his paintings.
The show is curated by Jo Melvin who I am sure would love the article I did on Lucy Lippard in The Blue Notebook. Volume 8 No 2, April 2014:
Pete Kennedy: Lucy Lippard’s Activism and Artists’ Books Activate Me. Available at https://store.uwe.ac.uk/browse/product.asp?modid=1&catid=884#catid884