Wednesday, 30 December 2009

Jenny Holzer: Projections.

Anything you think you can say with profanity or wit, forget it, Jenny Holzer can do it better.
I remember seeing her project 'Truisms' in London (it has also been displayed on an LED billboard in Times Square, 1982), and it's the one piece of art I can remember from that day, which is unusual for me. I tend to forget names. And now she's back with grander scenery, splashing images across the night in various cities. Here are some of her newer pieces of work, in 'Projections'.

Furthermore, she's currently running an exhibition at the Beyeler Fondation in Riehen, Switzerland until 24th January 2010. It will include all sorts of arty-type events, and the best part is that she's throwing a couple more projections in there too. Itinerary is as follows:

Additional projections:
11th-22nd November 2009, 7:30pm-11pm: Zurich Lindenhof projection over the Limmat.
Second week of January 2010: Margarethenhügel, Binningen near Basel.

2nd January 2010, 7:00pm: Jenny Holzer in Conversation with Jacques Herzog,Herzog & de Meuron Architects.
22nd January 2010, 6:00pm-2:00am: Poetry Night, 10th Basel Museum Night.
Poetry slam show, short guided tours, readings, workshops, etc.

Jenny Holzer Soirées:
13th November 2009, 11th December 2009, 8th January 2010, 6:00pm-9:00pm: Curator’s tour, 6.30 – 8.00pm, with Philippe Büttner, exhibition curator.
Artm& Dinner: 7.00 – 10.00pm.
Literally Art – Speaking Pictures: 6.00am – 9.00pm.

It's a shame I'm nowhere near Switzerland.

Tuesday, 29 December 2009

Queer As Film.

'Milk' and 'The Naked Civil Servant'/'An Englishman In New York' - some wonderfully acted films exposing the lives of two iconic homosexuals: Harvey Milk and Quentin Crisp. I introduce this subject because 'An Englishman In New York' was on television last night, and the distinction between fictional character and non-fictional person was quite invisible.

1. Harvey Milk: American politician, and the first member of Californian public office to be elected having openly declared his sexuality.
“If a bullet should go through my head let that bullet go through every closet door.”

[L-R: Sean Penn as Harvey Milk; the real Harvey Milk.]

2. Quentin Crisp: English writer and 1970s gay icon.
"Euphemisms are unpleasant truths wearing diplomatic cologne."

[L-R: John Hurt as Quentin Crisp; the real Quentin Crisp.]

Saturday, 19 December 2009


Eva Green's new film, Cracks, allows her to once again to display spectacular acting and an enviable anatomy. Green is renowned for her beautiful appearance, so much so that she secured her breakthrough role of Bond girl Vesper Lynd in Casino Royale (2006). She debuted her sophisticated Parisian charm alongside Michael Pitt and Louis Garrel in Bernado Bertolluci's The Dreamers (2003), and now Green seems to have built up a strong filmography to display her many talents.

Director Jordan Scott presents his seductive full-length debut with careful technique, using luxurious costumes, well-selected actors and elegant settings to craft a specific atmosphere for the backdrop to such an intricate plot. As a self-confessed nerd with a love for the more disturbing of film directors (like Lars Von Trier and David Lynch), it's only fitting that Eva Green goes for roles involving complex and generally unstable characters. And here she goes again in 'Cracks', playing the character of Miss G, a young and free-spirited teacher in a conventional, austere 1930s British boarding school. Green handles Miss G's repressed insanity with delicacy and precision, progressively exposing elements of instability as the film develops. She's captivating and crazy and extremely versatile, which is enhanced further by the rather marvellous acting from Juno Temple and Maria Valverde. Miss G's glamorous charisma and independence both inspires and mesmerises the adolescent students, culminating into subtle implications of teenage lust and a longing for freedom.

New girl Fiamma (Valverde), a Spanish aristocrat of blessed visual quality, arrives at the school and thus upsets the social makeup according to moody rascal Di Radfield (Temple). Cracks begin to form in Miss G's long-established reputation as the pupils' idolised teacher and friend, until her yearning for adoration and admiration from 'her girls' manifests into a dangerous and uncontrollable hunger. Green's tantalising presence amongst the girls allows for engaging viewing as she slowly exposes her own personal desires, descending into a somewhat uncomfortable display of adult invasion into childhood innocence.
7.5/10 on user ratings.

Rated: UK15/running time: 104 mins/language: English.

Thursday, 17 December 2009

Pirate of the Kate-ibbean.

I have just discovered this photograph of Kate Moss and Johnny Depp by Francois-Marie Banier. They were a beautiful couple weren't they. I love it.
Kate and Johnny met in January 1994 in Cafe Tabac (New York), stayed in a hotel together in February when there was a snow storm, rented a house at Christmas in Aspen and walked through the streets hand in hand, but the best bit is Kate's surprise 21st birthday party in 1995:
"Johnny said, 'We're going to dinner' - he's like, 'Put a dress on' and I'm like, 'I haven't got a dress'. So I had on this satin dress down to the floor, and he got the scissors and he's, like, cutting it up to the knee, literally, while we're walking out the door. I'm wearing, like, red satin up to the knee, all jagged."
They were together for four years, but then split because apparently Johnny was impossible to live with. In 2005 an article in the Daily Star quoted him as saying "I don't think I was very good for her"... probably not a good idea then that she met Pete Doherty ten years later?

Tuesday, 15 December 2009

The Horrors at Clique.

Every Friday evening, sitting cosy underneath the vintage shops of the Northern Quarter, Manchester’s Club Clique hosts a frenzied digital dance discoteque. Bursting at the seams with the most perverse pop music, exhibiting the occasional celeb DJ (like Frankmusik, Florence and The Machine, Mystery Jets, CSS...), and displaying the heart of unfathomable fashion, Clique is the most stylish place to be if you got nice shoes and want some happy tunes. And it’s so cool, it’s underground. Literally. Anyway, the latest guests to adorn the lovely Clique decks are two members of the scariest London garage rock band around – The Horrors. Coffin Joe and Faris Badwan spin something special for us tonight, with 1960s vintage records and quirky Balearic up-tempo jazz to 'Clique' your fingers to (get it?).

A few snaps from Clique, 11th Dember 2009:

Sunday, 13 December 2009

Francis Alÿs in London.

The Tate Modern is displaying an retrospective exibition of work by Francis Alÿs from 15th June to 5th September 2010. View details here.
Alÿs is a Belgian-born mixed media artist who lives in Mexico City, experimenting with anything from paint to video. A man pushed a block of ice through Mexico City until it had melted; Alÿs documents these puzzling projects as explorations of himself and his subjects. It's art and poetry amongst politics. I want to go look.

Saturday, 5 December 2009

Vice & Vodafone Heroes: Henry Holland

Vice teamed up with Vodafone and spent the last few months working on a series of projects with some of their most talented friends, making short films, flying planes, building high-fashion wendy houses - that sort of thing. Obviously Vice brought cameras along to film everything too. There are loads of celebs on the website, and you can investigate each individual project by clicking on their floating head when the site loads up. You can see it all here -

Featured Hero: Henry Holland.

Henry Holland is an extrovert British fashion designer and is also pals with Agyness Deyn. He happens to work just around the corner from the Vice magazine office, and he's always knocking around Great Eastern Street in flamboyant trousers. Somewhere along the line him and Vice came up with the idea of building him a miniature, literal, House of Holland in the middle of his studio and somehow, Henry and Vice both went along with it without bursting into laughter. He even designed a bunch of exclusive work to sell from inside his petite fashion cottage. Vice brought along a camera for the House warming and now the place is part of their Heroes project with Vodafone.