Sunday, 7 December 2014


The problem with 'quality culture'  is that you'll often find yourself waiting around for months for the next fix. I always feel that new exhibitions open up around the same time, just like bi-annuals are printed and shelved almost simultaneously. I'm not one to wait - I like to digest ASAP - so I usually end up feeling a a faint lull in inspiration. My last dose of 'quality culture' was around the time I started uni; Malevich at The Tate Modern, Tracey Emin at White Cube, Horst at The V&A, Garage, Love, Pop and AnOther, amongst many others. And then nothing. Now, I see new issues of my favourite magazines beginning to slowly appear on shelves, and at least 3 exciting exhibitions to look forward to: Allen Jones  RA, Women Fashion Power and Guy Bourdin: Image Maker. The latter's been ticked off my list first. 

I visited Somerset house for the exhibition on a quiet, drizzly Thursday morning which dulled the general mood and ambience slightly, but at the same time allowed for optimum viewing time and minimum human induced stress. The first segment of the exhibition, was a floor full of Bourdin's unpublished work for Charles Jourdan in which he travelled Britain by car with some cut off mannequin legs that he photographed in various situations - my favourites pictured below.

Upstairs, a long narrow room was aligned with a large number of Bourdin's images, all provocative, glossy, colourful. To walk through the exhibition was to transport yourself back to a time of pure glamour, powerful feminity, sex and elitist fashion - perhaps a time which didn't exist, which was manufactured through art? More so to immerse oneself in Bourdin's world was the small room adorned with 4 ceiling high projector screens, much like Mildred's desire to complete her 'TV Parlor'  in Ray Bradbury's dystopian novel Fahrenheit 451. Old Bourdin film footage played endlessly in this room; a truly escapist oppurtunity. 

* quality culture - my term for a product of art (excluding internet context) which takes a fairly long time to reach the consumer but is thoroughly worth it ie. bi-annual or quarterly magazines or exhibtions

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