Vivienne Westwood's re-entry into the multi-media arena is welcome as much as it is stimulating. Typically, she was quoted as saying, at the Guardian Hay festival 'In visual art, I don't believe that anything is happening at the moment.' Her definition of 'culture' was typically succinct: 'Culture is not peripheral and local, it's what is representative of human nature, and universal, and timeless.' She advocated total commitment, 'incredible discipline'. Her manifesto as presented at Hay included a wide-ranging discourse between Aristotle, Diogenes' 'The Cynic', Alice, and the Mad Hatter, and Pinocchio. She criticised the conceptual movement engendered by Marcel Duchamp, no less. Many of those in the audience were disappointed, however, that she didn't otherwise reveal much else. She has much in common with Tracey Emin, but their friendship may not survive. Vivienne would certainly shake up the British Pavilion at Venice but Emin will do so anyway.
Léger: Modern Art and the Metropolis
Two grey figures walk down a set of stairs surrounded by a mass of buildings, fragments of advertisements, railings and bright lights. Space is flat but full of dizzying action – the fractured surface of geometric shapes, bold colours and strong lines pulls the eye across the canvas in a rhythmic motion that starts, jumps and rewinds.
A major retrospective of Man Ray at the Scottish National Portrait Gallery in Edinburgh: a highlight of the Edinburgh Festival programme. Displaying over 100 works the fascinating exhibit takes the visitor chronologically through the life and career of Man Ray from 1916 until his death in 1976.
Dancing Around the Bride: Cage, Cunningham, Rauschenberg and Duchamp
This is not the first time we have “danced around the bride”. It is now well acknowledged that since the Bride rose to fame, art practice has been dancing around this mysterious figure first envisioned in Duchamp’s (in)famous work The Bride Stripped Bare by Her Bachelors, Even (1915-23) in one way or another.
Safety Pin Chic: Punk Invades the Met
When punk music emerged in the mid 1970s, a vibrant, cheeky subculture grew to amplify the message in art, literature, film, and most visibly fashion. To this day, punk and its many variations make up a large slice of popular culture and commerce.