Monday, 24 December 2018

Unusual Friends - Artists

Unusual Friends #13 - Artists
Marisol and I know hundreds of artists and many of them are very unusual. I will try and pick out some examples but I can tell you that this post could really be a book in itself.
Trolley Tea Parties
To start with there is Trolley, who names himself after a tea trolley because one of his art works consists of having a tea ceremony where ever he is invited (and I think he has done this in all parts of the world). He brings along hundreds of ceramics teapots, cups, saucers and a large collection of rare teas and invites the public to take part.
Museum Man
Then there is Adam, and one of my favourite in his work is the Museum Man. MAN also happen to include his initials. The way I heard the story behind this museum is that he rented an apartment in Berlin where he discovered a big treasure trove of photos and objects that belonged to some previous resident. This gave him the idea to live in a museum, and he proceeded to collect a huge quantity of objects, have them displayed in his apartment, live in it and open it as a museum to the public. And I heard that it gave Adam some benefits when paying his Council Tax.
Trolley and Adam were members of the London Biennale, a group that was (and still is) initiated by our friend David (more on him later) and Adam (already mentioned above). Marisol and I were also part of this group in the early part of this century. This is a big group and without upsetting anyone I can pick out some very unusual people.
The Green Lady
There was a lady who liked to paint herself green and tell stories at group meetings.
Worn Paintings
There was one artist who liked to wear her paintings and walk around the exhibitions.
Cyril on a bed of (cough)
Cyril whose sensual art had people mesmerised.
Sumer setting fire to a cardboard oven
Sumer who always produced unusual performances.
Reynolds' Puki Procession
Our friend Reynolds from Brooklyn whose Puki Procession could bring traffic to a standstill by parading her paintings as flags on poles, with the help of other group members.
Marko on a bed of nails
Then there was Marko who liked to think big, and once created a fakir's bed on which he laid for 20 minutes during a performance at an exhibition. I tried it but lasted only a minute or two.
Katie's Longshore Drift at Brighton Beach
Katie, who liked to invite everyone to a beach for a day of total mayhem in terms of art and performance.
mmmmm Action Art
The action art couple known as the MMMMMs, whose performances were centrepieces of many an exhibition.
David - Impromptu Performance
Then there was David himself, the orchestrator of the group whose performances were legendary for their simplicity, participation and imagination.
Before I get into trouble, I think I will move on to another set of unusual artists who I have come across who have sketched portraits of me. There are many of these, but some of them are proper friends. The unusual ones are those who made quick sketches when I was not aware, and gave me the work as surprise gifts.

At Maraven in the eighties
The ones from my days at Maraven in the eighties are particularly interesting because they were made by colleagues who were not really artists.
The restaurant portrait
On another occasion someone who sat at another table near us at a restaurant, came up to me and gave me a sketch and introduced himself.
The accountant portrait
Then recently the business partner of one of my friends, saw me one day at their office and asked if he could make a portrait. He was an accountant.
The Botin sketch
Finally the other day I was showing some people around the Centro Botin in Santander and a young man handed me a sketch which he made as part of a project to get local artists to liven up the day for the visitors.
I am very flattered.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Love all these anecdotes!