Friday, 6 December 2013


Well Gravity all that you would want from a film - it really is most excellent and I recommend everybody to see it. From the extraordinary ‘special effects’ (so special that the film could be a documentary)! - to the range of emotions that Sarah Bullock conveys – all wrapped up in 90 minutes of suspended belief. Meanwhile Alpha Papa mines a particular version of embarrassed bitter humour that had me cringing with knowing laughter – in a good way. Elizabeth 1st and Her people - the show at the National Portrait Gallery is stunning. A spectacular show with some real gems from the dynamic portraits (the representation of cloth and costumes is all subsuming) to the actual artefacts – one cannot help being moved by the tiny knitted glove.
We held the group MA Book Art Camberwell dissertation tutorials on the 4th floor of the Festival Hall. Teaching doesn’t get much better with the added spectacle of the view of north side of the Thames. Afterwards we visited Annely Juda who have a show by Suzanne Treister - In The Name Of Art a dense and layered show which requires a nuanced knowledge of 20th century art history, a working understanding of recent cultural cold war history and a newspaper to fully understand the work (it is supplied). Moving on to the beautiful Frith Street Gallery which has a body of work by Anna Barriball. The pieces work with the space as they both have a sense of being in the process of becoming.  
While working on the MA Design and the Book at the Minories I popped into the show at Firstsite which has a retrospective of Agnes Denes There are some very delicate drawings which are underpinned by smart thinking around philosophical, environmental and sexual politics. The show at the Minories, Mr Eighty has an intriguing range of works, my favourite is the piece created from 4 pins and sellotape – the catalogue description – ‘The edges of the works are reduced to such an extreme that they seem to question their own existence.’ Is a great starting point to thinking about the work.

An image of porta-cabins covered in the image of a building and a collection of velvet ropes behind the scenes at the National Portrait Gallery.