London planes land at Victoria Embankment Gardens.

No, they didn’t miss Heathrow. These are London plane trees at the Victoria Embankment Gardens in London, where I recently took shelter from a thunderstorm. Instead I got rained on from on high by ready-made sculpture; manna from heaven.

It was an eerie light because of the storm. The grass under the trees looked nearly white, both with the storm, and through being parched dry from lack of rain.

The trees were shedding their bark profusely, something they do naturally apparently, not down to the dry weather as I first thought. I nearly got hit on the head at one point!

The resulting debris on the ground took on sculptural qualities reminiscent of body parts; here a back-bone, there an arm, is that an elephant trunk?

Found Art – In Tate Modern – quick appendix.

From the comments I received back from my last post, it seems that people have been craning their necks, and looking at my picture from various angles and seeing completely different things to me. So to stop everybody getting neck ache, I have spun the images around in the 3 small photos above.

I must admit – a lot of new things came to mind when I did this.

Have a good Boxing Day!

Found Art – In Tate Modern. Where else?

241217 - Found ArtGold and sparkly, it could be a hen making a run for it, away from the dinner table! A ballet dancer?

This is an “Untitled” work I discovered during a visit to Tate Modern. Worth millions and hanging on the walls beside Pablo Picasso, Max Ernst and Robert Rauschenberg.

Alas, no! – although it ought to be, in my humble opinion (not to do down the other great artists in anyway). This wonderful work was found on the floor in the foyer of the new Switch House building with people trampling past without a second glance, some nearly destroying it with their great feet. No way to treat this masterpiece.

It is “Untitled,” – so give it a name. Make of it what you will.

(Yul K has taken me to task over titling things “untitled.” – have a look at the art of a neuroscientist! Inspire and be inspired.)

Merry Christmas everyone!

(After a couple of comments, I’ve done a quick appendix to this post.)

Bungee jumping off the kerb!

081217 - Bungee JumpA wee little extra blog for you.

This is a leap of faith.

Probably got run over by a car immediately after the jump. Some people have no respect for art!

*Oh yes, I don’t suppose you were, but in case you wondered what the photos were in my blog “Drawing on nature” posted on Sunday 03/12 – they were of a mushroom viewed from above that just kept on growing, and growing, and growing in our back garden. Apparently it was visible from space. As soon as it threatened to engulf the house, we had to have it chopped down. Shame really.

Drawing on nature

031217 - mushroom1I have made a rule with myself not to put too many photographs on my blog posts, for a good number of reasons:

  1. This is a blog about art, not photography (although I suppose there is an argument that overlaps the two I suppose).
  2. I’m not a great photographer.
  3. The camera I have isn’t really up to much.

031217 - Mushroom2However these images I took have got under my skin a bit, and I feel like sharing them with you. I won’t immediately tell you what they are pictures of – you can let your imagination run riot instead.*

I have found them very mesmerising. How about a picture of some far away nebula that the Hubble telescope is so good at capturing? Tree roots in snow? A close up of some feathered bird? Ice melting into a muddy puddle, or some CGI creation for a fantasy movie? The Surrealists might have fun with it.

031217 - mushroom3My own take on it, especially when you see it in black and white, was a bit of costume design for a play, perhaps Jack the Ripper under an all-concealing cloak, with just his legs sticking out at the bottom. or a badly wounded bird flapping it’s badly torn wings.

My final thought was that it could be one of those old cartographic images. A map of a treasure island, or the depiction of earth with an ocean in the centre and the known land masses arranged around the edge. Accuracy is not a necessary requirement for these early creations of the world. Is the earth flat? Are there sea monsters I see in the ocean?

031217 - mushroom4I did get around to a drawing – sometimes it helps to clarify one’s thinking on a subject. It does seem to have come out as a mixture of an actor on stage dressed up as a wounded bird (or Jack the Ripper – although, I’m not sure there is any pictorial evidence as to what he actually looked like). There is an element of the map in my doodle as well, and I like that. The bird and map could be symbolic of migration, a theme that I might delve into more deeply at some point in the future.

*In case you haven’t worked out what these are photographs of, and I am sure you have (answers on a postcard if you like), then the answer is revealed in this blog post.


Found Art that triggers the memory and imagination.

I don’t know about you, but my eyes are forever on the lookout for art ideas and inspiration from whatever source they can.

300617 - Found Art - Japanese WarriorThis was a piece of rubbish found on the pavement, yes complete rubbish, thrown away, discarded and abandoned paper that’s been trampled on and weathered by sun and rain. Nevertheless it caught my eye. Not exactly a Marcel Duchamp “readymade,” but certainly an “objet trouvé.” The paper folds look like deliberate origami and, with a large upraised fist, a Japanese warrior comes to life!

(Perhaps it also begs the question, what I would have made of it, if I had originally seen it the other way up on the pavement. Something completely different I imagine.)


291017 - Shoki after Hokusai

Shōki (after Hokusai)

This brings me on to one of Hokusai’s depictions of Shōki from the recent British Museum exhibition “Beyond the Great Wave.” Shōki dates back to the seventh century and legend has it that he is a demon-queller, and banisher of diseases. Quite useful this week as I wrestle with a head cold. I think a good version of him could be done in origami. Apparently when he appears in red he is remarkably efficient at warding off smallpox as well. Something for you to bear in mind, and the reason I have copied this Hokusai in red (well brown is the nearest I have) Conté crayon; to keep you safe.



070517 - Soft as a DumplingThe raised arm from my “objet trouvé” reminds me of another guy with arm aloft from one of my instant sketches done on the London underground last May. A portrait of an unknown man that I was drawn to, both for his immense presence, and also his humility (I think he’d just given up his seat to a pregnant lady). Not really related to the above, but more of an opportunity to stop him languishing in a forgotten sketchbook and to bring him to life in a blog post for his 15 minutes of fame.