Cathedral of Shit

has taken a well earned GAP year

Posts Tagged ‘Polly Staple’

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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One Night in Turin

Posted by cathedralofshit on November 8, 2010

Reports in from this year’s Artissima curated (sorry, directed) by Francesco Manacorda… seems it went pretty well. That’s right, we can be nice. Strong works reported in programmes curated by the likes of Anthony Huberman and LUX and, err, some other people…

Winner of the Illy prize selected by Ann Demeester, Richard Flood, Polly Staple and Adam Szymczyk was Melanie Gilligan, who wins 10k and some coffee. Not really, she gets no coffee. She does get “the opportunity to submit a design for the “Illy Art Collection” of coffee cups designed by leading artists”.

Winner of the stand prize was fair newcomer catchily-named RaebervonStenglin with a booth by Karsten Födinger and Alexander Wagner.

Winner of most disappointing exhibition – the miserable Douglas Gordon and Jonathan Monk’s ‘bar’ at Galeria Sonia Rosso, which served only warm Guinness at a snail’s pace. At least they got one aspect of British service culture right – they seemed thoroughly inconvenienced by every customer.

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Save the arts(?)

Posted by cathedralofshit on August 26, 2010

We have just been sent some rather dated minutes from a VALS meeting. Indeed – a leaked document. We’re like SPIES.

VALS is an arts advocacy group of art pros patched together to petition the government to tell them how important the arts are. All of these people stand to lose out when the cuts are imposed. Erica Boulton will be fucked because PR consultancy will be the first to go with budget cuts, Ralphy can’t sell tickets (a quote from an emailed comment on his programme: “Ralph’s painfully populist program is failing to deliver paying audiences as British audiences aren’t as stupid as Americans and know when they’re being patronised”). JPJ has courted the private sector so extensively to pay her and HUO’s 100k+ salaries and annual tea-party pavilion that the government has probably realised they can accommodate the cuts fairly easily. God forbid they cauterise Julia’s champers fund.

The minutes we were sent were such an embarrassing insight into whose hands the attempt to stifle cuts are in (though, to be fair, some of the more useful members of the group were absent) at first we didn’t dare print it. And, unusually diplomatically of us, we didn’t want to stymie potential saving the arts attempts. We’re the first to agree that something has to be done, but really, well, we think we may be screwed.
Leaving disaster aversion of the future of the arts in the hands of Julia Peyton Jones, Ekow Eshun and Erica Bolton may not bode well for us all.

Now, thanks to the release of David Shrigley’s animation (more on this later, next post), encouraging us to sign this petition and save the arts, we thought we’d publish them.
God help us all.

MINUTES
VALS Advocacy Working Group
16 July 2010 – Southbank Centre Offices

Attendees: Erica Bolton, Julia Peyton Jones, Ralph Rugoff, Luisa Summers (minutes)
Apologies: Iwona Blazwick, Ekow Eshun, Jonathan Harvey, Matthew Slotover, Polly Staple

Ralph Rugoff was pleased to welcome Erica Bolton to the VALS Advocacy Group discussions.

Erica Bolton gave a brief overview on the new government and the implications of the suggested cuts. It is realistic for the Culture sector to accept cuts of 10% or at worst 15% but cuts of suggested 25-30% would mean closure of arts organisations. [CoS: this is before the news came that we are looking at more like 40% cuts].

EB stressed that an appeal against cuts needed to be made directly to David and Samantha Cameron. Both David Cameron and Nick Klegg [CoS: Klegg?! Typo lol.] have children and will be more sympathetic towards Arts. [CoS: ?! WHAT?!]

Following discussions from the previous Advocacy meeting regarding a quick turnaround project conversation resumed:

Timings for quick turnaround project –

EB explained that the allocation of funding for DCMS will be decided by September 2010 and announced on 22 October 2010. It is important to continue with the appeal against cuts in an attempt to influence DCMS’ decision of how to allocate money between Arts, Sport, Media and Tourism.

Ideas –

1. 20 Leading Artists appeal to the Prime Minister (this could be Visual Artists only).
– Press would love this.
– Actors and Actresses could be invited, including: Stephen Fry, Ian McKellen, Judy Dench, Helen Mirren, David Tennant (for wide public appeal).
– Artists who could be invited, including: David Hockney, Anish Kapoor, Bridget Riley, Lucian Freud.

2. Personal emails to Samantha Cameron from top visual artists. [CoS: Dear Sam. I love your notebooks. Please save our arts].

3. Day of Action (Cross London Event idea)

4. Childrens’ Art Sleepover
– One night of sleepovers for children in every major art organisation.
– Volunteers to run these nights as service to the public
– Creates great press coverage
[CoS: this is great. We have visions of HUO shepherding twenty angry London teens around the park at 2am trying to confiscate their bottles of vodka]

5. Artists Petition No. 10
– An overnight vigil by artists outside No. 10 [CoS: Count us IN. We love a vigil. We’ve got our sleeping bags at the ready. Just say the word and we’ll all be there]

6. Business People
– Business people and entrepreneurs to send emails and petition on behalf of arts.

Slogan –

A slogan is needed for the appeal like ‘Cut us but don’t kill us’. EB suggested inviting Tim Delaney and John Heggarty to a session to help formulate this.
The slogan is for the public and not the government.

Areas to promote in campaigns –

1. Britain is rubbish at football, tennis, most things . . . [CoS: see next post on Shrigley film.]
2. Art & Culture is what Britain does best . . .
3. The fear factor . . . Britain would lose its world-leading position in the cultural field after radical cuts to the arts.

Series of Campaigns with Artists – leading to actions

David Shrigley Film – Looking at the David Shrigley Pringle advert, the group decided to approach him to make an animated advocacy film for the arts, designed to arouse public opposition to radical cuts to the arts.

Action – Julia Peyton Jones called David Shrigley during the meeting and left a message. JPJ to follow up with DS re: film. [Cos: Can you visualise her ‘in meeting enthusiasm’? I’ll ring him NOW! Poor Shrigley]

Alison Jackson image – an idea of the Tories as the new Puritans. Cameron turning into Cromwell. Possible poster ideas.

Action – Erica Bolton to contact Alison Jackson with this idea. AJ to create a campaign.

Mark Wallinger advert and billboards – Mark Wallinger to create an advert and billboard campaign, possibly working with TBWA Ad Agency who Matthew Slotover has approached..

Action – Ralph Rugoff to contact Mark Wallinger about campaign.

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Turnering in our graves.

Posted by cathedralofshit on May 4, 2010

Reaction to this year’s TURNER PRIZE is burning through blogosphere like white lightning. To save your fingers and thumbs CoS presents a live rolling blog of reaction – just like the papers are doing with the election:

11.45am The Guardian’s Jonathan Jones labels two of the nominees (The Otolith Group and Dexter Dalwood) “duds”.
11.46am But one the judges, well-known art expert and author of saucy gay murder mysteries Philip Hensher has rifled back that Dalwood’s paintings are in fact “instantly tantalising” because they have catchy titles.
12.15pm William Hill, bookmaker and art historian has stated Dalwood is “easy on the eye”.
12.25pm Over in deepest Tower Hamlets London’s brightest curator Polly Staple has noted that Susan Phillipsz’s sound installation are “incredibly difficult to photograph.”
12.26pm Meanwhile The Evening Telegraph of Peterborough leads with “A Bristol-born artist has been shortlisted for this year’s Turner Prize.”
12.27pm The Evening Telegraph also notes that Mayor’s Walk in Peterborough has had to be closed after a burst water main.
12.50pm The Nigerian Best Forum talks about evoking “memory and desire” in its breaking news report on the Turner prize.
12.52pm Manish Sood, Labour’s de-selected candidate for Norfolk North-West labels this years Turner Prize “the worst Turner Prize this country has ever known” and demands and Philip Hensher apologise to the Queen.
1.30pm The CoS team can’t stand the excitement anymore and we’re now off to Subway on Mare Street for an “Italian Special”. Find us there if anyone has anything interesting to say about THE TURNER PRIZE in the next 7 months.

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