One bonobo's view of the world...and stuff.

Monday, August 21, 2006

Edinbuggering about.

I took a few days holiday last week before Sophie and Adam went back to school. Part of the time was devoted to buying a new car (and all the money stuff associated with that).

Once that was sorted, we went through to Edinburgh. I bought a really cool kalimba (aka 'thumb piano') made from a sardine tin and we had lunch outside at a cafe in a church crypt. Here's a good Social Engineering idea: If mosques were to open cafes, they'd lose some of their scariness, they'd become integrated into the wider community...and the food would be brilliant!

The main purpose of the visit was to see the Ron Mueck exhibition at the National Galleries of Scotland. It's been getting a lot of press.

The baby is some 6m long. The spooning couple are about 14in and look as though they could stand up and dance. I'd've been damn scared if the baby had stood up.
This review here is pretty savage. It argues that Mueck's stuff isn't really art. A similar comment I've read is, 'All very clever - but then so is taxidermy.' I can see the point - there's a difference between the model-maker's skill in creating a realist representation and the artist's skill in imbuing it with meaning. However...I found that seeing the figures on such an enormous scale really made me stop and look at them. And surely that's what Art should do? Make you look? One piece was a baby at about half scale which was mounted on a wall. The unusual perspective shift was dizzying. It also works as sculpture. In some of the pieces the tension of the muscles and pliancy of the flesh was exactly right.

The Edinburgh Festival is in full swing, so we wandered up and down The Royal Mile, having flyers from fringe groups thrust upon us and watching street performers. A particularly impressive Swedish magician did a variation on the cup-and-balls trick...and I have no idea how he managed to sneak the melon under his hat.
We had the devil of a job getting out of Edinburgh. We never seem to take the same route twice. They have an...'interesting'... approach to signposting whereby you follow signs for Glasgow, then when you get to a particularly complex junction...they disappear. Or sometimes they say instead 'West' or 'North'. But how do you know which way the motorway is if you don't know where you are? And if you do know where you don't need a sign. We came back via a somewhat convoluted route.


woodpigeon01 said...

Urgh. Don't think I can eat after seeing that...


Edward the Bonobo said...

As Billy Connolly once said:

"Childbirth is a wonderful thing! It's lovely and miraculous and awe-inspiring...but it's not a spectator sport!"

Seriously, though...yes, it was initially quite freaky 'in the flesh' - but it really made you look at the details.