Monday, August 28
And summoned us to Mercury this Saturday past.
If you're looking for Cocteau Twins meets Electro-Goth Opera they're the band for you. I haven't been that turned on since Massive Attack.
Check out Lark here and if they're playing in your vicinity ignore the inevitable herds of britney goths and get your bottom there.
Thursday, August 24
I was a late starter to the whole blogging thing and I quite like it. It’s home to all those little opinioned pieces that enjoy dialogue - in the limited sense of dialogue that my subject pieces allow - and that would be lost and lonely in the dark recesses of my journal.
But it does bring to question a few relevant issues for me, of which the exhibitionist nature of divulgence of whatever kind - physical, emotional, opinion - and blogging as a natural progression in media and communication interest me the most. The fact that there are entire sites dedicated to ‘normal’ people posturing face and fanny online and even more who feel a need to express themselves - and gain recognition - to and from a mostly faceless audience requires less a disparaging attitude of ‘the masses as opposed to the real artistes’ and more of a serious consideration of this phenomenon (of blogging) as an aspect of generational communication that stands as descendent to the Gutenberg press.
If limited and time consuming media served as an ideological stronghold of the religious and political oligarchies in the past, surely blogging and the global exchange of information on the web by the indiscriminate masses is something to be revered in the present day?
Maybe in our ‘free and fair’ society we have succumbed to the saccharine pleasures of online self-indulgence, but if blogging and the power of mass discontent having a voice was without tooth and claw, it would be difficult to understand why places like China bar or monitor the practice.
Even in South Africa bloggers were the first to question the absurdity of Zuma raping an HIV woman without a condom and then proclaiming that he was HIV free.
The papers couldn’t run that. Maybe editorials could allude to the fact, but they couldn’t say outright: Zuma you dumb fuck: 1+1=2.
As for the literati - and my god I hate that word - being the only ‘group’ whose mutterings and quiverings about life are privy to exposure of whatever kind, I say this: humans are communicative, social creatures that will use whatever tools available to connect and express their own personal sense of divinity. The singular point of Being Published in a Book, and thus gaining access to that inner circle of Intellectuals and Artistes, has less to do with talent than it does with business acumen and marketing; and it has nothing to do with what should be deemed valuable.
I’m not saying that there aren’t works that have left indelible prints on culture and the collective consciousness, but making a change in somebody’s life with words is a power that we all have, that we exercise every day, and is hardly limited to the inside of a book cover.
I guess people like Marianne Thamm feel that the nebulous and thoroughly intangible online world diminishes the importance and structure of conveyed knowledge. Maybe it does - here today, deleted tomorrow hardly carries the weight of a universal, incorruptible message. But that in itself is the nature of our times. It seems out of place that there are those that still worship at the feet of Ozymandian concepts about art and literature.
Tuesday, August 22
Saturday, August 19
I always pictured Sarah Moon to look something like her paintings - a flowery apparition in a haze of incense and rose petals. Turns out Sarah Moon looks less like a seventies love child and more like a cocktail-sipping retiree in Florida (couldn't find any younger pics of him).
I had a heated debate with some friends of mine about the 'cool' value of certain pieces of established kitsch. Whereas Sarah Moon will never - in my books - be cool, pieces like Tretchikoff's brill blue and black faced girls are elevated to that realm of 'collectable kitsch'.
I think this'll be my kitsch week. More on this later.
Thursday, August 17
So this is how it's going to be. I noticed a little something wrong with the universe a few weeks ago. But nooooo, everyone was talking farms and music and and and...
This morning Marita informed me that the diabolical evil that is Lig magazine has swooped upon Chris Chameleon. As if stealing Nataniel from the bosom of cool wasn't enough, they've weasled their way under the skin of dear Chris and begun the promised metamorphosis of character so fataly prophetic in his name.
Please, dear friends, spare a tear for The Metamorphosis of Chris - the kind Kafka would cringe at.
What the fuck? WHAT IS THAT!? What have they done to your hair Chris?? Who is that pawn of Beelzebub clawing you to her lime-green bosom?! (oh, i just read the caption - it's your mother...even worse - Freud would have something to say about this)
WHY OH WHY HAVE YOU SOLD YOUR SOUL FOR GOLD?!
Don't misunderstand me - I'm all for change. Change is as good as a holiday as my mother always says. But good god. PASTEL??
Thank you for that insightful caption Lig - you've created another monster with a bad smile and heavy base.
WILL SOMEBODY PLEASE STOP THESE PEOPLE!
Monday, August 7
If I like a movie especially well, I tend to watch it as often as possible, usually right after I wake up or just before I go to sleep. It's in these spaces that the lines between reality and the dreamworld are blurred, where the underlying essence of the movie is distilled and absorbed by your subconscious.
In particular, I've really enjoyed:
and most recently, Dancer in the Dark.
Although Dancer didn't grip me in quite the way I'd expected while I was watching it, I was fascinated by the Von Trier adaptation of fifties musicals to that crunchy hard-reality thing he has going for him.
You see, I love musicals. It's a little soft spot I have. My favourites include High Society, Silk Stockings, Easter Parade and White Christmas - to name a few.
The fascination is not difficult to understand. In musicals, Selma (Björk) tells us, nothing dreadful ever happens. The Villian is never consequential, the problems never insurmountable and only the Communists are poor. It is, I think where Woody Allen drew most of his movie lifestyle inspiration from. In the city, everyone is rich, drinks whiskey and smokes cigars; the woman wear fur and drop diamonds from their lips when they speak. There are values with a comedic hint at liberalism. In the country everyone is happy, healthy and mannered.
Nothing dreadful ever happens.
And even if someone or something hints at destroying the perfect equilibrium of peace and humanity, one doesn't have to wait in terrible anticipation for some outrageous dues ex machina to fix the problem, because there is always a hero - who is morally if not physically infallible - to smooth the edges, calm the storm and dance the dear lassie's problems away.
And everyone - always - lives happily ever after.
Though, saying that, I've always felt a little uncomfortable at the ending of My Fair Lady. Whatever happens after that last scene where Eliza brings him his slippers? Do they become lovers? He's a little old and patronising isn't he?
Dancer also reminded me of an idea I toyed with a while back - a modern day South African remake of The Sound of Music. Set in The Apartheid Era, we can swop Captain Von Trapp for Meneer Van Tonder and Maria for Beauty from Kayelitsha.
It throws a whole new light on 'Favourite Things' -
When the dog bites, when the shacks burn, when we're being beat...