Sunday, 16 January 2011

Gallery Rage

This month I went to the huge Gauguin exhibition at Tate Modern and last week I went to the Cezanne's Card Players exhibition at the Courtauld Galleries in Somerset House. Both exhibitions close this weekend so I am glad I managed to see them - very worthwhile seeing.
But what a difference in terms of gallery 'experience'. The Gauguin was a true 'blockbuster' with over 120 of his works. It has been the Tate's most successful exhibition ever as far as visitors is concerned. And that is the problem - too many visitors turn it into a frustrating experience. Exhausting.
In contrast the Cezanne exhibition was a delight. Not  crowded, plenty of benches where you can sit and enjoy the works. Not too big an exhibition. No pressure to move on to the next picture. Inspiring.
Interestingly the Observer had an article on just this topic this morning:

If you missed the exhibitions in London you will be able to see the Gauguin exhibition in Washington DC from February to June and the Cezanne Card Players will be at the Met in New York also from February.

Friday, 14 January 2011

Vivian Maier - the discovery of a wonderful street photographer

I just came across the amazing story of Vivian Maier - nanny and extraordinary amateur street photographer.
In 2007 a Chicago estate agent, John Maloof, went to a furniture and antiques  auction and bought some boxes full of old photos, negatives and rolls of film. This sparked in him an interest in photography and the more he studied it the more he realised how good these photos were. He  managed to buy the rest of the boxes that were at the auction and now has over 100,000 images.
He did some research to find out who the mystery photographer was and found it was a French nanny who lived in Chicago and New York in the fifties and sixties.
Her photos are great. You can see some and read her story on the blog/website at . Watch the Chicago Tonight video you will find there
Other interesting sites/articles: (click on the 'more photos' link under the photo for a slideshow)

A feature length documentary 'Finding Vivian Maier' is planned for 2012 more info at Kickstarter

Saturday, 1 January 2011

January Classical Composer Anniversaries

Great Classical Composer

1/1/1782 J C Bach died
2/1/1837 Balakirev born
2/1/1905 M Tippett born
4/1/1710 Pergolesi born
6/1/1838 Max Bruch born
7/1/1899 Poulenc born
8/1/1713 Corelli died
8/1/1990 M Tippett died
11/1/1801 Cimarosa died
16/1/1886 Ponchielli died
16/1/1891 Delibes died
17/1/1751 Albinoni died
18/1/1835 Cesar Cui
23/1/1981 S.Barber died
27/1/1756 Mozart born
27/1/1813Verdi died
29/1/1862 Delius born
30/1/1963 Poulenc died
31/1/1797 Schubert born

2011 Composer Anniversaries

There are only two major annniversaries in 2011:
Mahler centenary of his death on May 11 1911
Liszt 200th anniversary of his birth on October 22 1811