Abundance of Cadmium Red
hmmm. ALL ART IS SUBVERSIVE.
I am in painting mode. This ancient relationship between art and subversion occupies my mind as I wield many brushes while listening to news reports about the Trumpet’s latest effort on the transistor – no deeply lyrical classical pieces for me when I paint! I like information. Red, Red, Red. I am using a lot of very bright cadmium red!
The statement, ‘ALL ART IS SUBVERSIVE’ is not a new concept. The Greek philosophers considered this idea at length and I daresay other ancient cultures did as well. Art can be persuasive, interpreted and therefore dangerous. Things can be hidden. Art should be subversive.
Firstly, in terms of subversion, I come to you as a writer. My ambition is to write ‘Poet’ under the profession category on my passport. Moreover, as both writer and a reader, subversion and I are old acquaintances. Writing is often absolutely subversive – not always, but very often. Subversive writing is often fun and funny, provocative, seductive, satisfying and totally delightful! The full serotonin hit! It is secondly that I write as a visual artist –a late conversion. For me, the calling to art came not as either epiphany or compulsion but as an ultra-logical, calculated path to take as a way to connect with my daughter during a difficult mother-daughter phase. My daughter is a visual artist and I needed to try to understand her. I put myself in her place.
Life is uncertain affair and full of questions so when I write, when I paint I tend to ask things of myself. Questions: wherein lies my responsibility as a visual artist? To myself: my sense of personal integrity? Or is it to an immediate audience: those most likely to witness the work. The net is cast much wider net these days with the advent of social-media and such witness is therefore more random. In creating do I wish to inform or titillate? Or, is it to the development of my physical and mental skill in producing an end product? What do I paint? Hydrangeas? Is it all of this together? I could go on. There is not enough space….Sanya is already saying no, no, no and having a cardiac arrest….
Video of the Week
Kay Schultz, Gallery One Teddy Bears Tutor
Play the video or watch it on YouTube
Kay’s teddies feature in the video this week and in the spirit of crafts and subversion or maybe crafty subversion, I ask you to consider the teddy bears’ picnic. What do they get up to in the woods on their picnic? (no smutty thoughts here please. This is teddy bears we are talking about! Teddy bears are made not bred! They only cuddle!) Why do teddies want to be in the woods in the first place? Can anyone join them or are they a guild? A union? A secret society? An insurrection of teddies? OMG!!!!
I want to be a teddy!!!
The Book Worm
Minnette Waters "The Turn of Midnight"
Someone in the Gallery has a dark sense of humour. In our tiny book section I recently spotted a Minnette Waters’ book, The Turn of Midnight. Water’s is an OK writer who usually writes strong female protagonists. She is a mainstream, commercial writer. In reading the blurb and noting that the book concerned the plague of the 1500’s I thought since I hadn’t read any of her works for some time “I’ll bite.” What better time to read a book about the plague than during a pandemic?
In concert with our theme of works subversive, this book is not the straight romance in the plague it initially seems. There is a strong woman protagonist, Lady Anne of Develish and equally strong themes attach to her: the newly widowed, Saxon Lady Anne has some very advanced ideas about social structures, cleanliness, justice and freedoms as well as the hots for Thurkell, the local, dark and handsome serf. In fact the book, while presenting as an easy linear narrative, offers a quite complex radical approach to social structures, racial acceptance, the church and class.
I paid my $2/read and have returned The Turn of Midnight to the Gallery book shelf so it’s available to read if this review tempts you.
Stay safe, stay well. Send good vibes to our Victorian neighbours. To all Victorians, we hold your hands in our hearts.
P.S. I love Kay and her class of teddy making girls’ teddies!
Photo by Andy Kuzma from Pexels-Girl with teddy Bear
Photo by Josiah Lewis from Pexels- Athina
Photo by Suzy Hazelwood from Pexels-Keats
Photo by Chevanon Photography from Pexels-Red Siamese fighting fish