Pavlos (pavlos) wrote,

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Show your brain the world

I went to London for the weekend on the reasonably-priced tartan plane to meet my friend Nana. Saturday was culture day:

Morning: Nobuyoshi Araki exhibition at Shine gallery, off King's Road. Boring. Always does the same stuff (flowers, prostitues, and courtesans). The exhibition was of isolated pictures, not "here's what it's like" stories, which are more interesting. They did have one gigantic book on display, but it was so gigantic you could hardly leaf through it.

Noon: Mona Hatoum at White Cube 2, Shoreditch. Brilliant Lebanese feminist conceptual sculptor. She clearly has an axe to grind, and the steelworking skills to do so. Unfortunately the exhibition wasn't very big. I'd like to see more of her work somewhere.

Afternoon: BodyWorlds at Atlantis Gallery, 146 Brick Lane. Immensely interesting anatomical exhibition of real human bodies, creatively opened up and posed (chess player, fencer, runner, horse rider) to illustrate aspects of the nervous, muscular, or other systems. Huge, and very well set up. Frequented by goths, debian hackers, and other vaguely alternative people.

Evening: Matisse - Picasso at Tate Modern. Very good exhibition of two totally different artists. One seems to have been a cheerful bon-viveur, who painted light, bright images of what he saw, and whatever feeings those images would rouse in the viewer he let them do. The other seems to have been an austere genius, who painted in very serious form the exact emotions that went through his head, leaving you to decode but not to interpret much. They are so unlike (other than sharing a period, technique, and subject matter) that I wonder about the conept of having a comparative exhibition.

On Sunday, we narrowly failed to get into the Madre Deus concert at Union Chapel, Islington (we only dicovered about it early afternoon) despite some queuing for returns. Unfortunately, the people who book less commercial shows tend to actually turn up. Sunday was otherwise a slow day of walking around the city.

Going to London mainly serves to remind me how much I detest being in Edinburgh. Compared to any metropolis, Edinburgh feels like being a career-minded expat working at a remote construction site, somewhere where there's clearly enough to live (even live well, good food, fresh air, attractive countryside, etc.) but simply nothing to fill your brain with at the weekend, other than alcohol. I want to live in a big city!



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