Wednesday, 15 July 2009

London pt.6 - Nicotine, Sainbury's & the American Dream

Tate Modern: Greatest place on Earth. Strange place to find it when generally I hate galleries. I go to feel clever. Cultured. Support the team. Steal ideas. But this one left me speechless.
My art tutor for these two weeks looks like a slightly better looking British version of Hamish Blake. He's so passionate about art and knows so much about it it's incredible. There's a slight nerdy manner to him, a nicotine addiction and gap between his front teeth - very Madonna-esque. Orgasmic. He could go on forever talking about an artwork. I think I could go forever listening to him talk about an artwork. He articulates everything about it so eloquently it's like an art itself. He can justify modern art to me. A receipt of white looking products bought from Sainbury's tapped to a gallery wall can suddenly have the most profound meaning.
There's five other people in the art group: all English except for me and an American. At first I bonded with the American, Mia, over the pain of getting here by economy class and then a deep set hatred of Sarah Palin and the word "innit". There's one girl who could be nothing but English. She's so posh but not in an ostentatious way, more an... Austen-tatious way. She wouldn't be out of place in any of those books. Not only that, she studies English and French literature and therefore belongs in a glass case, behind a velvet rope, in front of a killer laser beam. Such a precious little thing she is. The other girls are classic arty types. One is Lily Allen's twin, the other lives on High Street Kensington. Not sure which one of those scares me the most. The last is a guy from Brighton who doesn't say much. He's an artist, a silent reclusive type which makes me suspect his art is really really good.
On the first day we all met at the Jerwood art space. I was the first of the group to get there. Wondered how long it'd take for someone with a freaky coloured fringe to turn up. Like sitting next to a baby on a long hull flight, I knew it would inevitably happen. Three people in my theory was confirmed.
We were all sat down to watch a slide show on Modernism and Post-Modernism art. Not a particular treat for the only Australian in the room who for the past 20 years had seen nothing but slides of artworks. I sat there keen to get out of the room to see the real thing and use the bathroom.
It was windy and cold walking down the street to Tate Modern. The American girl turned to me and said she missed the Californian sun. I asked her whether Californian's were exactly like how they were portrayed on telly. She said the ignorance and prejudice towards others just comes from the idiot rednecks in the south. We then went on to hate against twilight and how it's now ruined that Muse song forever. She asked me whether Vegemite was made out of vegetables and I said no. She then asked me what then and thinking I should know the answer I just guessed, "yummy chemicals". Googling it when I got home I found I wasn't that far off.


  1. "He's an artist, a silent reclusive type which makes me suspect his art is really really good." lol Is that one of the necessities to be considered a true artist?

  2. Oh absolutely not.. but it certainly helps, haha.

  3. yes, I do not like Sarah Palin..ugh...she is so annoying on tv. lol! Yeah, I took an art history class and sitting in a dim room with all those slides made me really sleepy...:)

  4. It was nice to read about the description of your art class and the diverse class mates.
    Will come back for more :)