Nothing Is Invisible

……….Cultural Kaleidoscopy………..

Posts Tagged ‘London’

* Museum & Gallery Shows: Lucien Freud – Portraits, at the National Portrait Gallery

Posted by the editors on Thursday, 9 February 2012

Museum & Gallery Shows: Lucien Freud – Portraits, at the National Portrait Gallery, 9 February-27 May, 2012:  From the National Portrait Gallery: “Lucian Freud (1922 – 2011) was one of the most important and influential artists of his generation. Paintings of people were central to his work and this major exhibition, spanning over seventy years, is the first to focus on his portraiture.

Produced in close collaboration with the late Lucian Freud, the exhibition concentrates on particular periods and groups of sitters which illustrate Freud’s stylistic development and technical virtuosity. Insightful paintings of the artist’s lovers, friends and family, referred to by the artist as the ‘people in my life’, will demonstrate the psychological drama and unrelenting observational intensity of his work.

Featuring 130 works from museums and private collections throughout the world, some of which have never been seen before, this is an unmissable opportunity to experience the work of one of the world’s greatest artists.”

“I’ve always wanted to create drama in my pictures, which is why I paint people. It’s people who have brought drama to pictures from the beginning. The simplest human gestures tell stories.” (Lucien Freud)

Stunning.  Marvelous.  Corporeal.

image: Reflection (Self-portrait), 1985 by Lucien Freud, Private Collection, Ireland © The Lucian Freud Archive.  Courtesy Lucian Freud Archive,

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Museum & Gallery Shows: David Hockney – A Bigger Picture

Posted by the editors on Tuesday, 24 January 2012

Museum & Gallery Shows: David Hockney – A Bigger Picture: “..The Royal Academy of Arts presents the first major exhibition of new landscape works by David Hockney RA. Featuring vivid paintings inspired by the East Yorkshire landscape, these large-scale works have been created especially for the galleries at the Royal Academy of Arts.  ‘David Hockney RA: A Bigger Picture’ spans a 50 year period to demonstrate Hockney’s long exploration and fascination with the depiction of landscape.  The exhibition includes a display of his iPad drawings and a series of new films produced using 18 cameras, which are displayed on multiple screens and provide a spellbinding visual journey through the eyes of David Hockney.”  21 January – 9 April 2012, Royal Academy of Arts, London.  Magnificent..

image: David Hockney, Winter Timber,  (2009), 2,74 x 6,09 m . (Jonathan Wilkinson)

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Book Reviews: London Fields by Martin Amis

Posted by the editors on Monday, 9 January 2012

Book Reviews: London Fields (1989) by Martin Amis (Night Train (1997), Yellow Dog (2003), The Pregnant Widow (2010).  This black comedy murder mystery set in 1999 in London, Amis’ sixth novel, is thought by many to be his best, and a masterpiece of London fiction.  With a truly end-of-the-world setting, impending nuclear doom, environmental chaos, violence, and hopelessness, London Fields offers, frankly, little cheer, though it does offer Amis a chance to write in his superb, sharp, inspired, descriptive style.  There are wonderful character descriptions and a fine ear for London’s multi-cultural street talk, and its social disparities, from truly seedy pubs, to City bankers’ splendid homes.  Comedy, satire and symbolism are given full reign, and in fact, the symbolism does at times get heavy-handed.  A millennium novel full of sex, violence, the questioning of literary, media, and other, reliability, impending disaster, and darts (yes, darts), London Fields is an essential read, of course, for all fans of Martin Amis, and for those interested in dynamic, contemporary writing, who don’t mind an overdose, perhaps, of symbolism. (PR)

We recommend that you buy your books.  Have a wonderful personal library..  Here is a link to

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Get Carter – Starring Michael Caine

Posted by the editors on Sunday, 11 December 2011

Get Carter (1971)(DVD) – Directed by Mike Hodges (Pulp (1972), Croupier (1998), I’ll Sleep When I’m Dead (2003)), starring Michael Caine (The Ipcress File (1965), Alfie (1966), Sleuth (1972), Hannah and Her Sisters (1986), The Cider House Rules (1999), Children of Men (2006) and many, many other films) and others.  This excellent and iconic British crime drama in which a London gangster, a magnificent Michael Caine as coldly impassive Jack Carter, investigates his brother’s death, and released in 1971, the same year as The French Connection, another superb example of gritty, bleak and fatalistic neo-realism, is thought to be one of the best British films of all time, and certainly of its genre.  Deceptively simple in its story, and unrelenting in its depiction of virtual soullessness, Get Carter, is full of subtle complications and scathing observations on any number of social issues, from grotesque English class injustice, to hypocritical so-called liberation of women, to the oppressiveness of architecture, just to name a few.  Get Carter is undoubtedly a must-see film (though absolutely not to be confused with the abominable 2001 remake of the same name, starring the dubiously talented Sylvester Stallone).  (PR)  (Note that Caine, as Carter, is reading a Raymond Chandler novel on the train to Newcastle, among other small, sly cinematic inflections.)

See our post on the film I’ll Sleep When I’m Dead, also directed by Mike Hodges, starring Clive Owen, and see our post on the excellent film The French Connection, starring Gene Hackman.

We recommend that you buy your DVDs and Blu-ray disks.  Have an exceptional personal film library..  Here are links to

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When Art & Energy were Dancing on the Rooftops in New York – Laurie Anderson, Gordon Matta-Clark & Trisha Brown

Posted by the editors on Friday, 29 April 2011

Trisha Brown’s “Roof Piece,” (1973), depicting dancers on adjacent rooftops

Michael Kimmelman has written “When Art and Energy Were SoHo Neighbors” in the Art & Design section of The New York Times, which looks at New York’s Soho, in the 1970s, with its extraordinary, vibrant artistic energy, and some of the truly inspired “lean times” work of the choreographer Trisha Brown, the artist Gordon Matta-Clark, and the performance artist Laurie Anderson and includes some wonderful photos as well as a brief, but poignant interview with Anderson.  All this in the context of the show at the Barbican Art Gallery entitled “Laurie Anderson, Trisha Brown, Gordon Matta-Clark – Pioneers of the Downtown Scene New York 1970s” (through 22 May 2011) which includes sculptures, drawings, photographs, documentation of performances and mixed media works, and which The Guardian has called simply a “brilliant exhibition”.

Here’s what the Barbican has to say about the exhibition:

Performance artist and musician Laurie Anderson, choreographer Trisha Brown and artist Gordon Matta-Clark were friends and active participants in the New York art community, working fluidly between visual art and performance.

With the city as their backdrop, canvas, stage and inspiration, this exhibition is the first major presentation to examine the experimental and often daring approaches taken by these three key figures, both individually and collectively, in the burgeoning arts scene in downtown New York during the 1970s.

New York City provided a powerful context for the work of Anderson, Brown and Matta-Clark. On the verge of bankruptcy in the 1970s, the disappearance of manufacturing and other major industries and the withdrawal of public services were turning the city into a centre of widespread unemployment and lawlessness. Artists responded by taking over derelict spaces to make and exhibit their work, by using the city itself as the medium or setting for their work, by creating opportunities to engage directly with the public out of doors and by building a vibrant arts community.

Gordon Matta-Clark, Open House, 1972

Kimmelman offers some perceptive observations regarding the art scene, then and now, including an astute, if sadly true, comparison of the 70s New York downtown art scene and the current “art scene” style of contemporary Berlin.  Economics, certainly; motivation, aspiration, inspiration, even more so…

 images: top, Babette Mangolte/The New York Times; bottom, courtesy Jane Crawford. © Estate of Cosmos Andress Sarchiapone. © 2010 Estate of Gordon Matta- Clark/ Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York, DACS London

Posted in Art, Conceptual Art, culture, Economy, Environment, Exhibitions, General, Installations, Links, money, Museum & Gallery Shows, music, Nothing Is Invisible, nothingisinvisible, performance art, Photography, sculpture, Slide Shows, theatre, video | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

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