Friday, 18 September 2009

Archive: Arttartectary diary submission 1 March 2005

Artland's brim has been overflowing the last couple of weeks and my little Arttart followers, as you would expect, I was there delving into pv's a plenty, just for you.

The imminently cursed Hayward seemed to have played a voodoo trump card with their latest exhib. Ethnicity being order of the day in money-pulling galleries, Africa Remix is a breath of fresh air. The big ole H has been transformed into a gallery as opposed to a display cabinet for a change. Make a bee-line for El Anatsui and Samuel Fosso.

As you might expect, I was lucky enough to get a cheeky ticket to see one of the recent Pina Bausch creations at Sadlers Wells. The sell out show did exactly what it didn't say on the bottle and the carnation-filled stage made for an interesting back drop to the quietly disturbing, political performance.

The newly acquired The Old Blue Last by Vice Mag held Bloc Party's album launch shenanigans. Compared to the old drab, dingy dive, the made over neon-clad bar played host to a plethora of musos. Carl from The Libertines was spotted trying to be impressive, flocked by a gaggle of adoring female fans buying cheap champers. One has a bad drug habit, the other just has bad taste!

Fortescue Avenue, a space to watch out for, is Jonathan Viner's new venture. The opening party was a ‘must be at' event. The premiere screening of Emily Wardill's ‘The Feast Against Nature' played downstairs and after some backyard bonfire bin action, there was the delights of The Rebels and the eye-opening, beer-can-crushing charms of Selfish **** to rock your world.

The mobbed Tomoko Takahashi installation at Serpentine pulled in the art crew. The bar marquee couldn't shelter us from the rain as a one-in one-out queuing policy was in force. Getting there early served in my favour, as the rabble zigzagged through the lost and found remnants of others' lives in the biggest snakes and ladders game I have ever seen.

It surely shouldn't be possible that Arttart could do any more. But armed with an Arttarthottie, we graced the Great Eastern Hotel with our presence last week at the opening of Suite, an Artjar conception, which overtook various floors creating sound scapes a plenty. We were then subjected to the disc joys of Fran Gavin, Franko B and the delightful Max Wigram. I mean what is a girl to do!

Now this week, you are going to have to go it alone in the wilderness of artland as I am off over the waters to Roma for some classical appreciation and hot art spotting. I am going to be missing some fine affairs, to name a few: Alistar Mackie and Alison Moffet at MW Projects; Graham Hudson at VTO; Marc Quinn at White Cube; Brian Alfred at H of V Bruton space…oh the list could go on.

So with tales of fountain antics to come, Arttart saying ‘Ciao' to my intrepid Arttartlets.

Archive: Triumph of the Arttart 08 Feb 05

How would I describe the first of three shows at the Saatchi gallery? Well, let's put it this way, CS certainly can't claim curatorial fame as the paintings hang low with awful descriptive boards clogging up the mahogany-panelled corridors of County Hall! However, the rammed opening made for eye-catching entertainment, celeb- spotting, paparazzi-shooting, canapé-smuggling attempts, stalking introductions and a few new fellow art aquaintances.

Good for Nothing's launch party at the Moonlighting club surely put Arttart´s patience to the test. Not only were we made to queue up, we had to tackle the challenging doormen and then had the tiresome task of trying to get a drink at the bar! The new look mag from the Sleaze boys has something going for it. Unfortunately, I didn't even have the joy of skipping the light fantastic to Lauren Laverne's mixing as I queued for what felt like an eternity, for the toilet.

So I decided to brake out of that joint and head over Hackney Wick-way to Gavin Turk's studio party to celebrate the completion of his work for his New York show and, by heavens, am I glad I made the trek! Dancing and general revellery was had ´til the early hours of the morn, we even had the pleasure of a one-off performance by Gavin and his little studio helpers´ band. A true treat!

A sneaky tour was had last week, courtesy of a new honorary Arttart, of the caverns of the old Museum of Mankind, a true spy moment, before The Premiums show opening at the RA. They truly outdid themselves in the canapés stakes, awards galore and, well, the art by the 2nd Year students can only have you waiting in anticipation for what these future art stars will rustle up!

Arttart recommendations of the week: Not to be missed, Lee Miller at the NPG, a small collection of glorious B/W photos of some of the most influential movers and shakers of the 21st Century, great to see Alfred H Barr Jr mucking in with the farming.

All hail the maestro Joseph Beuys at Tate M. Anyone and everyone that should have been there, was. Mr Paul Smith, accompanied by the two lovely ladies in his life, seemed to be most taken aback by Room 6, whereas good ole Trace E did nothing but chat amongst the Vitrines space. There was an onslaught of the Warrens and some oldies but goldies who have been missed on the circuit, who gladly chomped on the almond canapés, that still being the bar snack, the nut! Get some caterers in there, Nick!

An unusual choice for Arttart was to make it to Scout's, not always on the ball, but definitely finger on the pulse this time round opening, with William Gedney. These brilliantly moody photographs reveal a documentative Hopperish portrait of America. But then it was off to Cell to pat the backs of some old friends - watch out for the attack of the foam hand!

So what do we have in store for you this week, maybe some Turner Whistler and Monet at Tate B, or for the new kids on the block, Toby Stephens at the Curve, Africa Remix at the Hayward, Dan Flavin at Haunch of Venison and Conquests and Techniques: A Synthesis at The Ship. Might these whet your appetite? If not, there will surely be some more treats up my sleeve, so watch this space.

Hasta más adelante

Arttart xxx

Thursday, 17 September 2009

Archive: What's it all about Arttart? 26 Jan 05

Gosh has been a while, well what with all the happenings in art land what else would you expect an Arttart to be doing but some art tarting! This came in true form at the over flowing Ian Monroe opening at H of V the other week. Wow the boy has truly come on leaps and bounds in lino expression but he still needed his father to describe his work to some more conceptually challenged invitees. A few of the clan snuck along to the after party on South Molton St and had a smashing time while the free bar lasted.

The undeterred art cattle, crowded out Vic Miro last Saturday for her photography show. What a heave hoe of circus acts was had, as people tried to get up the narrow staircase. Unfortunately the bar had run dry by the time I arrived but the glossy photographs by a plethora of artists sure made up for it. Arttart's advice of the week; skip the Turks at the RA unless you have a relative that you can't bare to converse with, then this would while away a few hours perfectly!

A reminder came last week in the form of the 1st RCA interim shows, of the trillions of art students that are bequeathed onto the art world. However the snotty nosed brats seemed to have conjured up some talent in the form of quite a few photographer's, watch this space! Last Wednesday was a riveting experience with bombing up and down regents street between Sadie Cole HQ for the over endorsed painter who should pay more attention to her amazing drawing skills and then the humorous video work by artist Doug Fishbone at Program. I then had to head down Farringdon way for the 30th birthday celebrations of a one near and dear at St John's only to be followed by a jamboree of Sadie Coles artists, the list of attendees read like the turner prize nominations. Juergen babbled away as Johnnie Shand Kydd not only hot footed it over from the gallery but then seemed to hot foot it around the restaurant from table to table, does that man not know any other eateries to frequent?

My week came to a close with the pv hopping that would put any Arttart to shame. Space twotentwo displayed the amazing ink drawings of John Walter whereas next door at Numbers gallery quite literally collaged what looked like a bunch of college drop outs together, it's all about Walter Benjamin don't you know! Vilma Gold was unfortunately postponed due to the artwork being shipped to the wrong city and well I just didn't have the energy for White Cube, so Ed Templeton at Modern Art got all my attention for his autobiographically slant on the skater community comprising culture and lewd behaviour in the form of mismash photographic, water colour painting installation. This week and the next there are some true corker openings. Anthony Caro at Tate B along with the first of three exhibs at Saatchi of his painting acquisitions. An attempt is being made to hijack me to some Burlesque night but I think I will have to refrain to keep my strength up for MW Projects tonight, Louise Bourgeois at Hauser and Wirth, then the Sleazenation re-launch shin dig and Gavin Turk's party. Come Saturday, am not sure I will have the energy for some Sketch canapés, oh well maybe if I force myself! 

Arttart logging off

Archive: The Year of the True Arttart 10 Jan 05

Happy New Year my intrepid Arttarts, I trust Christmas cheer was had by all. Last Year truly rolled out the red carpet on the art circuit revelry but my Arttart crystal ball informs me 2005 is the year to fill that bumper diary with all the invites of the frivolities to come.

It's your last chance to catch some of the delights from 2004. Fred Tomaselli at White Cube, where on the wintery pv night, mulled vino was sorely missed yet the exuberant colourful mixed media work make up for checking it out. Then there's Grate Britain at Cell, an eclectic mixture from carpet mountain bagpipe racket to the gorilla billboard postering from the wonderful Dan Griffiths. I wonder what Die Famille Schneider twins, who were spotted mulling around made of it, by being let off washing up duty?

Finally not forgetting the humorously enlarged monopoly board installation by Jen Lewandowska and Sam Levack presented by the Hames Levack duo under the stairs at The Trafaglar. Arttart nearly didn't make it due to the inconvenience of the Royal decent at the security frenzied ENO for some Royal Variety show malarkey, I mean the sheer outrage!

Now this week the gallery doors flew wide open for the opening of Andy Goldsworthy at Albion. All the art world money were out in force as champagne flowed and maybe more attention was paid to interesting outfits of the Battersea elite than to the wonderfully organic structures of AG. However one pv goer was overheard remarking on ‘What a waste of trees', golly they seem to have forgotten to teach art etiquette at finishing school these days.

For the highlights of the rest of the glorious onslaught of opening mayhem, tonight there is the remarkable solo show of Ian Monroe at Haunch of Venison, only a couple of years out of Goldsmith and this Saatchi backed artist presents an array of his vinylesque home interior collages, then a mere hop, skip and a jump away at Gimpel Fils we have an old tutor of yours truly, Pamela Golden.

Then as always the weekend has a couple of goodies; Henrik Plenge Larson at South London Gallery on Thursday, come Friday Stress Positions, however, Arttart and compadra are off to see Don Quixote at the Royal Festival Hall, I still have that theatre going bug that I caught over xmas and The Nutcracker and The Earthly Paradise don't seemed to have kicked the habit. But I will be strolling along to Vic Miro as she does the Photography world a huge justice in the plight of the return of painting crusade (I never knew it had gone anywhere!) and hangs some choice behind the camera stars on Saturday.

Arttart and out

Archive: Don't Blame it on the Arttart 07 Dec 04

Congrats to bookies favourite Jeremy Deller for winning the Turner Prize last night, unfortunately I wont be picking up my winnings, shucks what a pretty packet I could have made! So after the craze of the camping art buyer at RCA Secret has finally died down, I've emerged from the Arttart wilderness of the last couple of weeks to comprise a concise, pocket shaped low down for all you avid Arttartetonians.

I was lucky enough to be treated to rather lovely long lunch at the new cafe at the National Gallery along with my budding journo friends and I think it deserves a mention just for the deserts that I had to wait the entire meal to get my sticky little fingers over, for that reason alone it is sure to give brasseries all over Soho a run for their money. You would obviously have to bypass the hotel lobby marble clad new entrance in case you got mistaken for a wrong turn at nelson and thought you had ended up in the four seasons but with the hustle and bustle of the tourist train that runs frequently through NG, make a bee line for Degas and Raphael before they close for a gold ole Sunday classical jaunt.

On the other hand you could always grab your big nose and baggy pants from the dressing up box and head down Berkeley St way. Cindy Sherman was of course sporting a fine example of clown shoes at the opening of her show at Spruth Magers Lee the other week. Looking extremely inconspicuous, she paled in compassion to her big brash Clown photographs.

With a glorious hangover that could only be cured by a Saturday afternoon PV at Sketch, I anticipated the first London performance by Tobias Bernstrup. With the blackened video installation to calm the retina, the ever flowing champers but harder to pin down canapés tray kept the afternoon afloat until the transformer clad TB took centre stage and blasted us with his electro beats.

To follow on into the evening, Arttart was out partying for a second night in a row. After supporting the numerous Arttartcompadra's that are exhibiting in The Black Album show at Maureen Paley, there was the after party to rival them all. This is because it featured one perfect dancing element, a real 70's style-flashing dance floor. Oh yes kids, the art pack shaked their booty's in the darkest depths of Shadwell to tunes spun by the many birthday boy DJ's of the night, in a twister styley, beat the light cubes, in kung-fu toe stepping moves.

So openings this week that all true Arttarts will be congregating at are Fred Tomaselli at White Cube this Thursday alternatively you may prefer heading The Empire way for a Performance by The Icelandic Love Corporation. Come Friday we have Grate Britain at Cell Project Space or if you would rather a more further a field affair, hop on an easy jet flight and catch Bob and Roberta Smith at Baltic. To top off your art extravaganza weekend, skip merrily along with Christmas cheer to Curb Your Enthusiasm at Millers Terrace on Sat.

Air kisses galore to my little intrepid Arttarts

Archive: The Trials and Tribulations of an Arttart 12 Nov 04

Before we get down to Arttart business, did I mention my music highlight a couple of weeks back? No, how could this have surpassed my fingers, well it was The Bees at The Electric Ballroom that's what. The scuz may still be apparent in the gutter of NW3 but the isle of wighters overcame the gloom of London town and cheered a couple hundred of us lucky so & sos and warmed our hearts with their melodic tunes. Obviously Arttart got down on the dance floor at the after party to some oldies but goldies, request of the week has to be, bring back the Hammond!

Well last week definitely took an animal stance. Haunch of Venison has to be top of the list being appreciated not only in the culinary sense (For the little black book that every Arttart should hold, Baltic in Southwark do a great H of V with baked pears!) but also visually. Reaming with art appreciators Keith Tyson wooed us with a new of batch playful colour explorations.

New space Kemistry on Charlotte Road are surely going to give neighbouring galls a run for their money. With the electrifying mixture of wears on offer that must be snapped up sharpish means the boys behind Kemistry can only go from strength to strength.

After trekking it through dim lit housing estates SE16 way for the London exchange of From Nowhere to Somewhere Without Return, the Coleman Project Space charmed me with its shed installations and water pissing pipe that had quite a few of us in question, was it art or just a bad plumbing job?

Not to miss is John Stezaker at The Approach, what with the new gleaming extension housing perfectly framed collages by the 70's illusionist, its worth a quick see before you grab a pint of Guinness and make yourself at home in front of the roaring fire in anticipation of the ever nearing winter.

Then last night we had a real treat not only did we get to saunter around Freud's house in Frognal supping on beer or for the new healthy fad drinker in all of us, a fruit smoothie, we also got to hear from the facial hair setter sporting the must have hamster sideburn, Will Self. To accompany Nick Cunard's photographs ofpsychotherapeutic environments , Self delved into his analysed past and gave us many anecdotes of his experiences in the therapist's chair. My, what a chuckle we had!

So tonight we have the opening of Death and Magic at Keith Talent. Then next week the ever flowing river of openings offers up some Hauser and Wirth, Riflemaker, Alison Jacques, the former gagosian girl, Laura Bartlett Gallery and ooh many more.

Air kisses to all you avid Arttarters xxxxx

Archive: The spotless mind of an Arttart 31 Oct 04

So I told a lie the other week and I did pop along to the opening of Frieze Artfair on the way to me rocker gig but do I wish I hadn't bothered, I mean queue in the rain, who do they think we are? Mere mortals! There I was dolled up in me glam gear, boots up to my ears, when we approached the entrance, by george were we greeted by wet unhappy F.A.F attendants with rather large brollies attempting to herd all oncoming VIP invitee traffic to the rather long queue. Yes Arttart kiddies, I went to have a look and no, I say we will not queue in the rain for what I hear was an over bulging opening with barely any room to breath. Am sure some may contest this opinion and say the queue did move rather fast but I didn't hang around to find out!

Come Friday, well even when it rains it pours in the artworld. It truly bucketed it down for the opening at Zoo. Norman Rosenthal really did well to make it not only to the opening but then to head back into town and catch up with father to be Max Wigram at the opening of Expander at the new RA Burlington Gardens space. Brimming with Arttart totty, a fabulous array of art and a few celebs, the evening swirled into a Galliano cocktail haze.

With hardly any art opening energy to spare, I stayed in bed while breakfast was served at Sketch and just about hauled myself up for the Millers Terrace, Oliver Payne and Nick Relph ornately patterned mirrored exhibition experience. All huddled under some tarpaulin, more alcohol glugging was had. ‘Did you go to this, I went to that' competitions were flitting around as the Arttart army moved round the corner to yet another over flowing after party at the local pub. Bring on Sunday!!!!!!!!!!!!!

You would have thought that we would have had enough come last Monday yet the week kicked off with the Franz Ferdinand curated night at Scala. A real mixture from van footed mod, to jungle animal chanting Bobby Conn, to hand me the ear plugs, The Kills. It was good to see Javis C and his lady sitting on the floor downstairs roughing it like the rest of us although I think some hardcore fans were a little confused at the avant garde attempt line up.

The straight in on Tuesday, Eagerly awaiting, early art snooper's stood waiting for Tate B to open its doors for the Turner Prize. Herding seems to be flavour of the month as we trailed like farm animals into the galleries. Mmmmmmmm, not sure about this one, already been a lot of scepticism. My money is on Yinka Shonibare with his headless girl on ‘The Swing after Fragonard'. Good to see the old masters influencing the C21 art stars.

Now keep your eyes peeled for the Arttart web site coming soon and yes some more stories from the plethora of art party invites I receive. xxxxxxxx