Cocky Warholian tribute.
Through no fault of my own I made the mistake of going to a university renowned as being a good arts and culture school. It was the place where Young British Artists willingly pimped out their souls to Saatchi’s hijacking of contemporary art; a place where young (wannabe) artists learn the tricks necessary to to trade in modern art world. On a basic level art and culture deal with visual viscerality. Sounds, touch, taste and smell all have their place; but I’m certain if you asked the layman, the girl in the hood or the proverbial pedestrian observer: Art = Pretty Pictures. A lot of contemporary cultural creations (arts/fashion/design/etc) are ruined by the infusion of the dirty dollar. I’m not saying that all expensive art is necessarily shyte; I mean take this stunning piece of modern art from YBA’s granddaddy:
A prime example of money’s inability to polish a turd, that fact that Damian (son of) Hirst’s “Most Expensive piece of Art.EVER!!!” was the result of too many cooks following a recipe for disaster. I imagine Saatchi egging Damo on ‘Go on so, wack a bit more bling on it and I’ll make sure to use my advertising agency to fleece any idiot trying to fill that hole in their soul with dollars’ #JustSaying.
As I’m not a practising artist, I’m not qualified to pass judgement on Damian’s work; I’ll leave that to an older, wiser head: “Everyone in the art world knows Hirst hasn’t sold the skull. It’s clearly just an elaborate ruse to drum up publicity and rewrite the book value of all his other work.” Shock horror! Mediocre artist pumped full of filthy lucre by the advertising man who got Thatcher elected, uses media-training to dupe bloated art fools into believing all that glitters is gold.
Now, don’t want to knock a fellow northerner, but somewhere between Leeds and Ldn-town; the the UK’s most famous artist sold his soul to Saatchi’s sheckles; pretending to be Leonardo di Vinci (a genuine Renaissance man) meets Andy Warhol (he of Factory fame, known for industrialising contemporary art) ever since.
MCR. The. Greatest. City in the World (north of Watford;-). The birthplace of the industrial revolution, the place where Karl Marx studied and formed socialist ideals: = rights for the workers & all that. One thing MCR has over Ldn is the fact that people here are (usually) more co-operative and community minded. If the UK was a family, Mcr would Ldn’s bloshier more rebellious elder Uncle. The size and cosmopolitan make-up of the place mean different ethnic populations have to rub along together; the flip side is that anyone using works with more than three syllables is considered middle-class, bourgeois or (worse still;-) French!
Anyway, Mcr’s end-of-year design degree show was where I found myself on a sunny Saturday morning. WTF was I doing here – bed, breakfast and the weekly paper are my usual fayre this time of the week. Feeling like a fish out of water I mingled with the excited parents, bored siblings and expectant students. http://degreeshow.mmu.ac.uk/
This playful piece is the work of Elizabeth Winstanley – a designer working fixated with illusions, alternative media interacting this modern medium with the more traditional trope of embroidery. http://www.elizabethjanewinstanley.com/