#285 theoldmortuary ponders

Yesterday I put a #meettheartist post on Instagram. I warned potential new readers that many times the same thing happens day after day on the blog. Unintentionally this is exactly the case today.

Saturday and Sunday were shaped by the Sail GP event taking place on our doorstep.

Day 1

Day 2

The days of the weekend are differentiated by other things that happened. Saturday was mostly art and Sunday was mostly sport. Quite by chance there was a curious connection to the sporty bits of yesterday.

A special race was put on at the Sail GP event. The team GB boat had a temporary crew member, Kate, Duchess of Cambridge.

©BBC

Did we see her? Yes,we must have done from our vantage point near the race HQ and village, but everyone really does look exactly the same in a wetsuit and helmet.

She is on the GB boat as it crossed the finish line in front of us.

Then our evening plans created the curious link. Like many we watched the Womens England Football team bring credibility back to our national sport. When they won we watched Kate’s husband greet the winning footballers with the most glorious of joyful hugs.

And by the most delightful of coincidences I have a piece of art for sale at the Exhibition I am managing, that sums this image up.

You can tell a lot about a person by the way they hug. ©theoldmortuary

A repetitive blog but with some subtle changes and an observation that works for me. With the added spice of sporting success.

Pandemic Pondering #452

©Suzy Billing-Mountain

It would be true to say that for many of us the last 18 months have not gone to plan . @theoldmortuary this weekend has not quite gone to plan but where unplanned gaps in my schedule appeared I was lucky enough to fill some gaps with art. Drawn to the Valley are supporting an Art Trail that shows the work of both members and non-members.

©Sue Coleman

The trail has also had its own unplanned moments and was postponed because of Covid restrictions. Suffering the same fate as the Open Studios event that is was organised to replace for the same reasons. In consequence it has been some time in the planning. Sadly one contributing artist has died between the planning stages and the actual realisation of the trail.

©Glenis Blakiston

The widower of Glenis Blakiston had decided to open her studio just as she would have done.

Pandemic Pondering #430

©Sarah Brown Drawn to the Valley

Today, Saturday is the last day of the art exhibition at Tamar Valley AONB. It has been a remarkable exhibition with good visitor numbers and many sales. Every time I’ve been there has been time to concentrate on different areas of the exhibition. Hares were my thing on the last visit. The sleepy one above and the mythical one below are so peaceful.

© Gilly Spottiswood Drawn to the Valley

The mum and leveret below make me smile.

©Shari Hills Drawn to the Valley

Stewarding at the exhibition has been a great chance to meet and talk with visitors and artists, and we have heard some fabulous comments and conversations but the real take away from this first post pandemic ( we hope) exhibition is the smiles and happiness that doing something normal  has given people. There has also been plenty of chance for a good natter when the exhibition has been quiet

©Sue Richardson Drawn to the Valley

But this afternoon it will be time to call in the hard hats and take everything down.

© Julia O’Dell ( detail) Drawn to the Valley

And all head off for the Hills.

© Allie Cole Drawn to the Valley

Or the quiet waters of the Tamar Valley.

©Clare Law Drawn to the Valley

The remaining unsold works will appear on our website very soon.
https://drawntothevalley.com/.

Pandemic Pondering #427

This over saturated sky is not benign. Todays ‘ Bob’ was always a risky call, the weather is just dire currently. No one could have anticipated a hail storm in May. It was the weirdest sensation to swim with piercing needles of ice bombarding our out of water flesh and continuing to penetrate well below the waterline. Not an experience we need to repeat any time soon. In other bobbing news many of us are doing two swims on Solstice Day 21st June. 4:30 am and 9:30pm. Maybe a snooze sometime between the two!

This was how the weather looked as we got out, calm, friendly, welcoming. Do not believe these visual lies …

In other news I have read a book in less than 24 hours.

This is a page turner!

Beyond that a day of domestic admin and a little socialising. A friend also made this cool video of the art exhibition we set up last week. The link is below

Tuesday is my day for visiting as a regular punter. I guess we already know what the blog will be about!

Pandemic Pondering #400

Yesterday I got the art cards printed that will be sold during art exhibitions this year. I realise I’ve chosen two smelly subjects as my images of choice. Scratch and sniff card seems to have gone out of favour but even if the print shop had offered such a service I doubt I would have chosen the option.

Mackerel smell wonderful when freshly caught and grilled, like all fish not so good after a while, and this chap was painted two years ago!

The second card is a digitally enhanced photograph of the back stairs of a disused Plymouth nightclub. For many years the club had been closed and was the desired location of a Super Church. While interminable and ultimately unsuccessful planning permission was sought the building was mothballed. Again not a great option for scratch and sniff.

Mothballs was not the fragrance that tickled my nose as I took this picture. Damp, mildew and the vestigia of human sweat, tobacco, beer and pleasure were the backnotes to the headier notes of urine and weed.

Maybe my art cards are not such a big ticket subject for Pandemic Pondering #400. But they are about recovery. Helping local business by spending money close to home.

Shop 4 Plymouth

©shop4plymouth

It took less than an hour to visit The Artside in Plymouth and walk away with 100 beautifully printed cards.

https://www.theartsideshop.co.uk/

©TheArtside

Geddon- a word used in the Westcountry. It has multiple uses. Derived from two words get and on.

It is used to express surprise and disbelief, but in this context it is used as a word of encouragement. It can also be used as a greeting instead of hello or goodbye.

Pandemic Pondering#400

Pandemic Pondering #326

Friday- Remember Fridays!

6 years ago I was preparing for an exhibition in Brixton, London. At the time I was working in Central London and knew that in order to encourage my work colleagues and friends to an Art Gallery over a weekend I would need to advertise the areas proximity to a wide variety of places where people could mingle , drink and socialise into the small hours of the night. Somewhere culturally significant.

Electric Avenue*, Brixton.

By co-incidence, currently, I am helping to prepare for an exhibition. To encourage visitors to the exhibition I am advertising its safety, the fact that you can visit it alone and from the safety of your own home.

https://drawntothevalley.com/

Fridays, they are not what they used to be…

* Electric Avenue. Built in 1800, the street was the first in the area to get electric street lights. The street is home to a famous multi- cultural street market and was made doubly famous by Eddie Grant, who wrote the song “Electric Avenue” in 1983 . At the time he was working as an actor at The Black Theatre in Brixton.

Fridays , not what they used to be but today I bet I have gifted you an earworm**

** An earworm, sometimes referred to as a brainworm, sticky music, stuck song syndrome, or, most commonly after earworms, Involuntary Musical Imagery (INMI), is a catchy and/or memorable piece of music or saying that continuously occupies a person’s mind even after it is no longer being played or spoken about.

Have a Happy 2* Friday.

A row of books.

Any row of books has potential.

A row of books that are beautiful, but fakes,  should be disappointing.

Tate Modern bought ‘British Library’ by Yinka Shonibare CBE in 2019.

The installation of 6,328 books is as much a space for contemplation as the Seagram Murals by Rothko in the same building .
https://www.tate.org.uk/visit/tate-modern/display/in-the-studio/mark-rothko

My response to Rothko is to be peaceful and calm. Shonibares work makes my head fizz. It’s not just the vivid, vibrant colours but the stark utilitarian librariness of it.

3 walls of a gallery are filled with bookshelves. All the books are brightly coloured, covered with Dutch Fabric, a mass produced batik style material from the Netherlands. On the spines in gold leaf are the names of first or second generation migrants to Britain who have made significant contributions to the culture or history of Britain. Some books have the names of people who have opposed migration, this negative group is balanced by the huge number of books that have no names on their spines representing the future when currently unknown migrants will boost and embellish British life in unimaginable ways.
https://www.tate.org.uk/art/artworks/shonibare-the-british-library-t15250

Central to this exhibition is a website where migrants or their descendents can add their stories. These additions can be read on the website.

I took my small granddaughter, also a migrant, to this exhibition before she was one. Already a lover of colourful books I plan to take her regularly until she can add her story.
https://thebritishlibraryinstallation.com/about/

The Guardian ran an article about Yinka Shonibare last week.

https://www.theguardian.com/artanddesign/2020/jan/13/yinka-shonibare-london-nigeria-african-renaissance