Saturday, 25 December 2010

Monday, 20 December 2010


I finally have the flu, and to my dismay i have had to share my time on the sofa ill with the Landlord coming in and out of the house whilst painting my room. I just want to go to bed!

Sunday, 19 December 2010

Pumphouse gallery fail

Stupidly i have left going to an exhibition to the last day it is open, and it is just my luck that it is closed due to snow. I am very disappointed, but i couldn't see myself being able to traipse across Battersea park in the snow. Also on the plus side, it is a travelling show, therefore, hopefully i may be able to see it somewhere else in the future...

The Magic Show

Wednesday, 15 December 2010

Peckham Karaoke!

Today, Joe and I went down to Camberwell college to help and artist with her forthcoming show. Jessica Voorsanger is curating and making work in the Peckham space called 'The Peckham Heroes' based around who the locals community's heroes are that are from Peckham; I think local schools got involved in choosing the people they thought most deserving of being a Peckham hero and our role in all of this was to dress up as them and sing some Karaoke!
 There were 10 Heroes with 10 songs and we could pick who we dressed as - I dressed as Jo Brand to start with which involved wearing a massive comical bra and a black wig; Jo Brands song was 'hit me baby one more time'- Joe followed by dressing as an Edwardian 'Thomas Tilling' (The man who invented the bus stop) and Sang a song he didn't know the words to by the Hollies strangely called 'Bus stop'. We were there with a couple of others so it was slightly embarrassing, especially as some of them could really sing well. It was very fun though- we also did a spin of dressing in football kits, Joe was Rio Ferdinand and i was Mary Phillips (Both footballers)- we sang 'Three lion's' and 'Proud Mary'Michael Caine wig throughout the performance, but apparently it was better with the wig!

Looking forward to the show- maybe not so much the film that is going on YouTube though...

Sunday, 12 December 2010

Charlottes Party- The depths of Thurrock

 It was Charlotte's Birthday party today, and as with any young girl she has had a birthday party at the weekend. However, strangely enough she has chosen to have a pizza party which commenced at 10.30am... I don't know about anyone else, but i can't really stomach pizza at that time in the morning, especially after a 30 min country drive through Okendon because the M25 is full of traffic. Anyway, we got there and were hanging around for pizza hut to open. Billy pulled out his vouchercloud phone app; pre-determining what discount food we were to consume. 11am came, and pizza hut still hadn't opened- one of the mums was getting a little flustered, angry that they hadn't opened it yet- "Do they not know we have a birthday party here?! (looks at my mum) are you sure you booked it?"- my mum, quite angry at the comment went and spoke to one of the staff rushing around in the darkened 'hut'- asking why they hadn't opened the restaurant yet for the party, the lady, very apologetically explained that no one had told her and she was on her own that day. Despite the anger at pizza hut that morning, the lady worked really hard to put together a party for my sister (although slightly late) and her friends all had fun. It just goes to show that you shouldn't rely on an industrial/retail park pizza hut to put together a birthday party. Especially on a Sunday morning.

Friday, 10 December 2010

An alternative space take down- thus marks the end of term

The end of term and a month off to catch up with all of the work i have been holding off for a couple of weeks. Although... i still have  a couple of things to do in college next week.
I took down the exhibition this afternoon- rushing in before 2pm so i could say goodbye to Sam before he ventures out to Canada for a couple of months- I actually got to college at 10 past 2 and dropped his Christmas card outside which i then had to find. I 'm the friend that is difficult to deal with, but you don't have the heart to tell them.
Anyway, as i  took down the show and moved all of the furniture out of the Opt-in space ready for the MA students over Christmas, somebody turned up to see the show. It was quite upsetting really- due to the lack of people that had come to see the show that she would come in just as i had finished packing up. It was actually the girl from the Saturday school that was interested in performance as well, so i felt doubly bad that she had come after college with a friend and there was nothing to see. We had a beer though and talked about the show. Joe ran to get some footage of my piece of work and i gave her a bit of a tour of the studio to show her what had been in the exhibition. It was really nice that she was interested enough to turn up though- she was very complimentary of the work too.

Thursday, 9 December 2010

Photos of 'An Alternative Space'

Some images from "The recession will be over by Christmas:

An Alternative Space: The Private View

Everything came together in the end! Hurrah!

The exhibition did look very good in the end, despite having to pretty much curate the show on my own yesterday- all of the work that was said to be going into the exhibition turned up and looked pretty good in the spaces that i had chosen, Sam helped a hell of a lot too with setting up projectors for the black space and making sure the double projection timing that i wanted to do worked. There were a couple of last minute changes involving having to move one of the sculptures into the breakout space because it was fragile- and moving me upstairs with my performance because of the people still working in the studio (One of the main decisions was that we had to leave the space for people to be able to work in) That was fine though because it meant some of the more subtle pieces were not lost to my Buffet. There was a bit of a let down in the end that not many people actually turned up for the private view- although its understandable that people didn't have time to help with set up and curation, I'm shocked that the people exhibiting didn't bother to come.

I got some good feed back about the overall organisation and look of the exhibition, so i am happy for that reason -although i didn't feel that my work really showed itself very well aesthetically after the performance- probably due to the fact that i had to get that balloon covered table cloth- oh, and some Graphics students came in to trash the room- throwing food all over the place. I thought the performance went well- the fictional roles that i subtly gave to people throughout the evening were totally set by the end of the hour and from talking to people afterwards i was very convincingly stressed. One of the participants even thought that i had managed to loose all of my money and was very indebted to the bank so told another participant off when i went to buy him tea from the Tate (Another little nugget of information on wartime parties- my nan said that tea was rationed- but not in cafes so you would go over to a cafe to buy tea instead of brewing it yourself- one of the participants was asked to bring sugar along with them to go in the tea) A couple of my favourite parts of the performance were when everyone took it upon themselves to stand for the queens speech- one of the fictionally younger participants sneakily had a drink of beer and i told her off- and when everyone clapped the fictional father at the end of the performance for 'bringing the food to the table'
Photos to come...

Tuesday, 7 December 2010

Char's Birthday

I have just finished all of my duties that i needed to get done for tomorrows exhibition- DVD's burned, shopping bought and costume and equipment all in my bag for tomorrow. Unfortunatley i couldn't get the tableware in Sainsbury's that i wanted to for the work tomorrow, but there was a boundary that i could only shop in one shop for the work (Just as in wartime you would've only been allowed to use your ration book in one shop)- So i had to make do with Balloon covered tablecloths and napkins- i think anything would've been better than this!
I'm surprised that i managed to get it all done today actually- although i am completely stressed and tired after hearing that the event on thursday has been cancelled due to the protest on thursday- but this should help with my stressed mother character tomorrow.

Charlotte was quite upset that i had to leave so early on her birthday too- I was supposed to be going out to dinner wih my family but i didn't realise how late they were going. I think i made it up by playing a board game- plus the present that i got her was pretty nifty- an ATM machine money box. I would like one of those.
The board game we played is actually very fun- it's called the Logo game and the main aim i think is to show you how much of a consumer you really are. I'm very good at it, which means that i know every brand and ad on TV -it seems that i also know alot about car branding and what chocolate bars look lik if you cut them in half.  Well worth playing though- the only quiz i'm any good at, well,  maybe second to Disney Trivial Persuits.

Invitations via e-mail

Dear Rob

You are cordially invited to:

'The recession will be over by christmas' festive party and buffet.

I will be receiving guests tomorrow at 4pm for a pre-buffet drink outside room A124, in Chelsea College of Art and Design.

Please dress accordingly, and I look forward to seeing you tomorrow:-

Also, if you wouldn't mind, could you please bring along with you some sugar?


Sent from my iPhone

I decided to use e-mail in the spirit of the new e-card craze that seems to be appearing in companies at Christmas nowadays. Instead of receiving a charity Christmas card as you would about 5 years ago, as an 'eco' solution companies have started to use e-Christmas cards to send out to large numbers of clients and staff. I find this questionable to whether or not it is a solution to stop cutting down trees, especially as i have seen the amount of waste in stationary cupboards in various 'brand changing' estate agents. It is more likely a simple way to save money.
The other thing noticeable about this invite is the request to bring something along to the buffet in the wartime spirit- and of course the contradictory 'sent from my iphone' stamp.

Monday, 6 December 2010

An Alternative Space: Event- 9th December 2pm

Hey everyone,

As part of the 'An Alternative Space' exhibition being held in the Opt-In Space BG01 from 8th-10th December, SALT are hosting a discussion around the theme of 'alternative spaces' on Thursday 9th December, in the Opt-In Space, starting at 2pm.

The discussion will feature talks from Rosalie Schweiker, who has set up an alternative space called 'the Emely' in order to explore the idea of the need to set up our 'own thing', as a place for her and others to work, and a place to invite people to, who's website you can look at here , and by Jake Caleb, about the problematic elements involved in setting up alternative spaces that he has encountered through his own practice. There will also be free tea and biscuits, served in cups made by Rosalie Schweiker.

The event is open to anyone, if there are any questions then feel free to email me on

See you there!


Setting Up in an Alternative Space

The end of the first day of set up and we have approximately one piece of work on the wall and one that is in bubble wrap in the middle of the space. The black space however is set up and bits of wall have been spruced with white paint. People don't seem too interested in helping with the curation part and unless everyone is in on Wednesday morning willing to help with the set up i don't see how we can do a group curation. I've also had a couple of late submissions today- but at least they could show me their work, so that's not too disconcerting. It wasn't too bad today- I'm probably over-exaggerating the lack of work that got done because by the end of the day the space did look spick and span. Sam deserves a big pat on the back also- as always he managed to be there on time (Well before me) and helped me out a lot- especially with the harsh task of hanging black-out curtains in the doorways of the black space and working out where to put projections etc (technical advice was very much appreciated). Tomorrow is going to be jam packed- despite the set up dates being today and Wednesday- a couple of the part-time students can only bring in their work to me tomorrow so i will have to pop into college, as well as travelling to Essex for my sisters 11th birthday and then back into London again to do a last minute Christmas shop for Wednesday (Another wartime tradition). A lot is now relying on everything going well and to plan on Wednesday, yet as much as I've planned i still don't trust myself to have remembered everything.
Exhibition Poster completed by myself today (Not my usual style, but i thought i should make the poster simple and illustrative):

Sunday, 5 December 2010

Queens Speech to Parliament

I think i have had a breakthrough this weekend after finding this speech- shall definitely be played in the recession Christmas dinner-

Saturday, 4 December 2010

Christmas Dinner

Its only the 4th December in our house but we have already had the tree up for 3 weeks and last night we celebrated with a house Christmas dinner. Without saying Ba-humbug too many times on the lead up to Christmas, I'd like to point out that all the festivities is not something that i would immediately think of. Joe had organised this dinner about 4 years ago i think and he invited queen and country to come along. Unfortunately they didn't but we (Me Joe and Anika) had a fun time with our guests Nick and Charlotte (Our old housemate). Dinner did actually tun out to be quite fantastic. See the shopping list:

Christmas dinner shopping list:

Brussels sprouts
Petit pois peas
Yorkshire puddings
Big baking container
Cashew nuts
Red pepper
Black olives
Raspberry coulis
Crackers/ more cheese?
Cranberry sauce
Mulled wine
Pigs in blankets?
Vegetable oil
Ice cream
Christmas crackers
Trifle mix
Orange juice

Joe cooked a mean nut-roast and my roast potatoes were very good (recipe stolen from my mum)- me and Joe also managed to cook a chicken (despite the vegetarian- ness we both suffer) and Anika whipped up a very satisfying trifle. We actually had a five course meal- including a melon starter, cheese board and a round of port o help it all go down. Very satisfying- although by the time we had finished it was dark and Joe and Charlotte's challenge of making a snowman fell slightly short at... well at that it was very short i suppose. There was also a big snowball fight, which usually you can't have after the traditional timing of Christmas dinner which made the night unique (although i stayed way out of it- I'm very miserable when it comes to snow- i can't bare people throwing snowballs at me)
We finished with a quiz that i hosted- a DVD quiz that i had made a couple of years ago for my family to play (Which was quite obvious when i started asking questions about the Olympics in the 60's and Christmas songs from the 20's) I remember one year i had made a bonus round for my family based on songs from Disney films and they were quite livid because the questions weren't in their time frame of knowledge- my brother and sister did very well in that round though. To be honest i think that Disney quiz would have gone down a lot better last night than the 30 year old one. The DVD part of the quiz was good,  despite me forgetting what most of the answers were- there was a zooming in section where you had to be the first to guess what the image was and a drawn conundrum section where you had to guess what the pictures meant.
Anyway, Charlotte won- due to her luck in the DVD rounds and Anika was upset that i had given people extra points for silly answers. I think i wasn't the best quiz master, but we all had fun!
Not looking forward to cleaning the dishes this morning...

Thursday, 2 December 2010

Opt-In space Exhibition: An Alternative Space

We have spoken about having exhibitions in the opt-in space for a long time now, but they have never actually amounted to anything- there are often groups that members of the studio prepare, but nothing that is collaborative between students. This is what i am hoping for with this exhibition and i have had a lot of good press about organising an exhibition. The date of the private view is actually next Wednesday and we had a meeting today (after several previous discussions in the opt-in space) about a couple of finalisation's. The space is going to be kept as a studio during the exhibition, so it will be more like an open studio event- the group thought that this was the main ethos of the space and wanted the exhibition in keeping with the work that happened here. Also we decided to keep the name 'An alternative space' for the exhibition as it can relate to any of the work submitted, because we do all work in an alternative space. The process now is becoming quite exciting as there are a lot of works that are beginning to be submitted- Salt are planning to have a whole day event on the Thursday and I'm planning to do my 'The recession will be over by Christmas' performance in the opt-in space on the Wednesday, hopefully I'll also be able to set up the black space into a screening room. The only thing that is worrying me at the moment is that quite a few people have said that they would like to be involved but haven't actually shown me images of or even told me dimensions of what their work is. I feel a bit of a free for all coming on for next week when we start to set up. We are planing to meet again next week on Monday to spend the day curating,  tidying the space and hanging first pieces of work, apparently one of the students has a sculpture that is 2m tall- I'm now thinking of possible places this could be placed- there's not many, but it could really create an interesting dynamic within the open studio space (Initial curaton ideas below).
My piece of work for the show is lacking a little at the moment i feel so I'm going to have to finalise some ideas over the weekend about how i want to stage the dinner.

Wednesday, 1 December 2010

Chelsea Christmas Fayre

we woke up to a mass amount of snow this morning and the decision had to be made weather or not (pun totally intended) the Christmas fayre was going to be called off or not. a difficult decision as Joe had spent a lot of time and effort in organising the fayre, and on one side of the question- how many people were going to turn up to college today and on the other, how do you organise the same level of involvement for a different day in the week. We gave Tim a call- he was already on his way to college with his shirts to sell and said that he had spoken to couple of other stall holders who were also on their way- it shone a little light on the situation that people would still be coming into college if they could. Our journey in wasn't bad either- perhaps after 3 solid days of snow people just get on with things and forget to panic about it. However when we got to college the parade ground had been closed off and it was very cold outside- not many wanted to sit outside. So part two of the conundrum, where do you put a fleet of 20 stalls if not outside in a large parade ground. Joe went off to haggle with various people for space inside the college while i went to instruct people about what was going on.

Joe triumphed and at 11am (only half an hour after schedule) the majority of the stalls were set up, lined along the corridor. In a way this was a better space than the parade ground anyway because there was a constant flow of people through the space, buying cards and food. Unfortunately there were one or two stalls that would have benefited from the space next to the Tate Britain- but overall i think everyone was happy that they were warm.

My stalls were all a bit of a mess in the end- the hook the duck and face painting didn't get set up until about 1pm because i was watching so many other stalls, whilst at the same time helping people set up, and when i did eventually get around to filling my hook the duck the paddling pool had a hole in it. So hook the duck became a little stationary after i had to remove the water. I think this was a bit of a novelty though and drew in a couple of people so they could laugh at my failed attempts. Another problem that we had was that the mulled wine stall that was borrowing my induction hob had an aluminium pan so couldn't actually use it- we fixed this in a 'health and safety nightmare' way by running down to the foundry and borrowing a piece of steel to place between the hob and the pan (meanwhile Joe ran to Sainsbury's to buy a new pan but unfortunately that was also aluminum).
My Christmas cards all sold- hooray! Gill said she had bought mine specifically to send to members of her family who she knew wouldn't like them, I'm not sure if that is a good thing or not- but she did buy them so I'll take it as a compliment. Overall we raised a good £400 which was amazing, plus Joe managed to get various members of staff to do Karaoke which was excellent viewing. So well done to everybody, especially Joe who i think will need a well deserved rest for a week after this!