Cathedral of Shit

has taken a well earned GAP year

Posts Tagged ‘Gavin Brown’

Venice-isms

Posted by cathedralofshit on June 7, 2011

Venice is over, once more. We’ve suffered more than most – our feet hurt, our wallets are empty, we’ve realised we don’t actually like Aperol fucking Spritz, and we were asked to leave Anita’s boat after unsuccessfully fashioning one of those fetching access wristbands out of chewing gum and Copydex. Harrumph! Rumbled!

Here’s a mini round-up peppered with inaccuracies and information from unreliable sources.

The Cathedral of Shit Golden Lion Donkey goes to… Germany! Though we hated the Polish Pavilion the most, Germany was responsible for providing the subject matter for it. So it’s their fault and so they win the prize.

The Cathedral of Shit Silver Donkey goes to Haroon Mirza.

Spain and NL are disqualified for not really showing any art. Belgium gets a slapped wrist for showing a student of the curator. The Swedes get a slapped wrist for still not realising their pavilion would look better without any art, Britain gets a slapped wrist and bum for not installing a queuing/ticketing system so we could actually see the Mike Nelson, but Mike gets, erm, ‘unslapped’ for slightly injuring the Tory Minister for Culture Ed Vaizey who walloped his head inside. Tim Davies’ Welsh pavilion was curated by his dealer and a former director of V22, so the whole of Wales can have a slap. Finally, France gets a slapped bum, arse and face for the turgid nonsense from Christian Boltanski. Life! Death! So profound! What does it MEAN?!

There were A LOT of Swiss artists weren’t there? Even the ‘born in Iran, Morocco, Georgia’ artists seem to have Swiss nationalities.

The ACE were out in force showing ‘support’ at the New Forest Pavilion despite slashing their funding to absolutely nowt.

Busier than ever, CoS has an idea as to how to trim down on visitors for the next Biennale. In addition to the millions of art people to talk to, can we PLEASE trim down on the eighty thousand PRs at every event, hanging round grinning inanely and saying “isn’t it just suuuper?”. Just an idea.
This Biennale, Roman Abramovich’s Superyacht seemed to be the most talked about artwork, parked on the curb of the Giardini. (Wonder how many 20p’s he had to put in the meter?) Oligarch’s parties were ten a penny this year, though despite the prevalence of these caviar and champers parties, CoS weren’t actually invited to any, so we hot-footed it to the Gavin Brown/Balice Hertling/Herald St/Gio Marconi party where allegedly they’d let anyone in. Naturally, it was held in Venice’s smallest (and shittest) club, Piccolo Mondo. We made it into the sweatbox after queueing behind a group of suited Christie’s staff who were trying their damnedest to get in by shouting “but we know Nicky/Gavin/Daniele!!”. We stayed a little to watch Tate’s Martin Clark throw some shapes, but had to leave as the lasers were setting off our epilepsy.

On Friday night CoS had terrible post-lazer migaraines, and stayed in, so we sent a scout to check out the Frieze 20th birthday party on an island a short jaunt away. With a guest list including most of London, guests included Matthew Higgs, Peter Saville, Alice Rawsthorn, Polly Staple, Mark Sladen, Massimiliano Gioni, Iwona Blazwick, Cornelia Grassi and Tommaso Corvi-Mora, Adrian Searle, Chiara Repetto, Nick Relph, Roselee Goldberg, and of course Frieze en masse. Being trapped on the island meant everyone was soon suitably plastered. Some grumbles about the wedding DJ soon faded once everyone had drunk a lot more champagne the spirit of the 20th Anniversary was embraced.
Though our scout left about 2am, we heard tales of the last boat including arguments, an irate (yes, apparently it does happen) but valiant Matthew Slotover shouting at the boat captain for trying to leave early without the last guests, and some minor ruckus’ on board…

Other bits of gossip…

Which female American dealer fell into the canal whilst taking a leak, and has also broken her nose?
Which Frieze writer was seen kissing which Berlin dealer at the Gavin Brown/Herald St/Balice Hertling/Gio Marconi party?
Which supposedly sober ‘rock’ musician was seen screaming at two different people at different times, about seemingly very little?

Ah, hell with it – we’re not Popbitch… and there are no super-injuctions being banded about round these parts! The answers are; Michelle Maccarone, Paul Teasdale, Tanya Leighton and Courtney Love! Hurrah!

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Brothers In Arms II, The Sequel.

Posted by cathedralofshit on May 12, 2011

Good on the Lisson Gallery, Anish Kapoor, Patrick Brill and Mark Wallinger for highlighting Ai Wei Wei’s plight. It would possibly, however, also be an idea to highlight that Ai Wei Wei’s imprisonment is not some sort of one off as some of the reports mistakenly seem to imply. He is one of scores of activists who have been detained. Others include Li Xiongbing, the Beijing human rights lawyer who has been missing since last week and Zhang Jialing, a former journalist who covered the detention of Ai Weiwei and has ben missing since April 28th.And bloggers have also been banged up – for example Liang Haiyi and Ran Yunfei. China’s detention of Ai Wei Wei is, according to Amnesty Internaional’s Sam Zarifi, “part of a wider trend of repression of lawyers, writers and government critics” that seems to correlate to Chinese nerves over a repetition of the events of the Arab Spring happening in their back yard. Whilst somehave been released – such as the lawyers Tang Jitian and Jiang Tianyong, they have been warned not to talk about their time in their own incommunicado detentions. And their willingness to go along with these instructions suggests that these detentions were harrowing.

Another related point: will any of the galleries participating in Art Hong Kong, due to open later there this month, have a think about their presence there signifies? UK galleries slated to be there include Lisson, Simon Lee, Victoria Miro, Pilar Corrias and Sadie Coles whilst international galleries include Gavin Brown, Blum & Poe, Tanya Bonakdar, Chantal Crousel and Emmanuel Perrotin. Surely instead of museum’s shutting down for one day as Kapoor suggests, a refusal to hang works in their booths would be far more effective?

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