Tag Archives: art

art tour of the V&A, chinatown

8 Aug

london 4.13pm 19C cloudybright tuesday 2017

i went to a tour of the Victoria and albert museum, organised by one of the tour guides, it has a gayish slant… meaning we get to see a lot of naked men. haha. its been quite some time since i visited the V&A so it was nice to see they have lots of new stuff on exhibition, which reminds me i must go back again as it would deserve a 2nd visit or more, if ever i find myself at a loose end. 

then i went to a meetup of gay guys( east and west) in soho, quite a large gathering this time, some came from thailand and penang, on holiday here.  long ago there was a group for   white guys who like chinese guys and vice versa. it was like a nursery, for me when i first cameout on the gay scene. for some reason it ended. though i hear in paris it still goes on.

anyway, i was chatting to the white guy who lives in thailand and is here on a visit, and some of the chinese guys in the group were trying to persuade him to come to uk to live, saying he must miss the company of his fellow white compatriots and also being able to speak english to others, but talking to him, i realise he likes being in thailand, where he says he is the point of attraction for a lot of thai guys, whereas over here, he is just another old man. haha.

after which some of us went to chinatown to the fresh noodle factory,in an alley near gerrard st.  i have not been there before, and they showed me where it was, and we bought fresh flat noodles£1each, and cheung fun£1, and i bought 6 char siew pao £2.50.  and i took them to new loon moon, where i bought another 10bihun instant noodles. and so did the others on my recommendation. it was almost sold out. the instant noodles are dry ones, not soup, and are rice vermicelli. i like the taste of them, as they are malaysian tasting. 

olden days

18 May

london 5.57am 9C cloudy/sunny thursday 2017

interesting things that the internet can throw up. i had this posted by twistedsifter on my wordpress reader. a carved lion from a single tree trunk, and may be the longest such carving. the previous holder was this carved tree trunk depicting the scenes in a famous chinese scroll painting featuring scenes along the river during ching ming. and it led me to see the wikipedia entry showing the scroll and it is possible to enlarge it and see it in great detail… something which i would imagine is quite difficult to do with the original scroll. there seem to be a lot of commerce going on, with people buying and selling, and transporting stuff, and also a lot of restaurants with tables set out for customers to eat. in fact there is no scenes of people eating or cooking in their own homes…it would seem all the buildings lining the river bank are commercial buildings no private housing at all. maybe the old days are not so different from nowadays where commerce will take over the river banks and only the rich can afford to build housing with water views.

Ching ming is when people clean the graves and happen around 4-5april. interesting that in the scroll all the trees are bare of leaves. and this is in april, does it mean winter lasts till then in the old days? (more likely that city is quite far north and so winter is later there) and no scenes of anyone cleaning graves in that scroll painting. it looks like any ordinary day in fact…nothing special to distinguish it as ching ming. makes u wonder why it was titled a day in ching ming. (i know they spell it with qing ming. but i really cannot pronounce anything beginning with q. and for that matter anything with x either. ) for an english speaker, the q is pronounced like que, as in queen, queer, queue. so qing would be pronounced quing. i wonder who first determines the transfer of chinese words into the alphabet. to introduce x, q, is crazy.

serpentine gallery

2 Aug

london 9.26pm 19.7C light rain tuesday 2016

ian suggested going there for our meetup so that is how i came to see the pavilion and stuff.

every year a different structure is commissioned but i have not gone to see them. ian did ask me why i dont.

it is the same with me not using my freedom pass to travel all over london when it is free for me to do so. i said i seem to have gone of going to see things for the sake of seeing them. but i have to say it was nice to see the pavilion, and i am glad he suggested meeting there. one does need friends to drag one out and do things. 

he said he goes walking with his boyfriend recently to cheshunt, and said it has the most beautiful park he has seen in all his wanderings around london.

i found out about his boyfriend liking to take walks and wanting him to come along;  when i saw some blackberry bushes nearby and said i read recently that due to the cold spring the blackberries are going to be late ripening and pointing out it is so, because the bush still has unripe blackberries. that was when he said they picked blackberries on their walk in cheshunt. 

white guy giving himself a chinese name to get his poem published

9 Sep

london 5.35pm sunny 19.2C wednesday

here is a case of a white man using a chinese name to get his poem published. and doing it so well  to the extent that it got into the best american poetry 2015 anthology. quite a reverse of the usual accusation of asians being discriminated against.

people are criticising him, but i dont quite see why he should not do it after all if a asian can change his name to an english sounding one, to get published, why not him?

what it means is that your race does influence the outcome whether u get published or not.  and maybe we should all acknowledge this is a human condition. it pervades all of human interactions , not only in the publication world.

judgeing a poem is so subjective, it is not surprising if the name of the poet can influence how people view it. 

we humans do have prejudices… or what i would like to call  our ability to observe the world and come to general conclusions. you might call it prejudice, or u might call it instinct of survival.

in the most extreme situation it is the ability to recognise danger and instantly note who is causing it. so we humans would never get into that situation where you can kill  sheep quietly taking them one by one, amidst the herd, and all the rest of them wont notice and continue cropping at the grass.  

but nowadays we are not constantly in danger, so all that instinct has morphed into who writes the best poetry… haha. 

ceramic bricks of london shop front forming a tower exhibited in victoria and albert museum

8 Sep

london 6.15pm 17.1C tuesday 2015

saw this in this website dezeem.com ,.looks rather interesting, and all the brick shop fronts, with the posh shops on top are for sale from £95-£6000 down. there are 2439 (3000 all told)of them left unsold when i looked.  the exhibition is from 8th sept to 1nov 2015.


when i looked, quite alot of the cheaper ones are sold. they are very detailed and looks lovely. and some feature graffiti images on their sides.

no 2785 featured a shuttered facade of ’empire’ chinese takeaway at 43mile end road ec1. with a huge graffiti of a smoking tart wearing a bra and tight shorts, which covers the whole side wall. £110 sold. its very nice no wonder they get sold so fast. i only just caught it, before the image was removed. once sold they remove the image from the site. so gradually fewer images remain to view. pity that, because they are rather nice to see in their own right. esp when so many of them have graffiti on their side, which wont be seen even if u go to that exhibition and look at the tower. not to mention at the website u can see it real close and see all the details.

he’s got a blog too


horsey statues in the thames

2 Sep

london 13.37pm 16.7C cloudy with sunny bits wednesday 2015

read about this, horses in the thames, and since i live so near, i went there at low tide. 

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The business model for the creative industries is broken | Money | The Guardian

30 Aug

Welcome to Edinburgh, site of the perfect capitalist model: where the owners of assets such as hotels skim off large profits, while the people who make those profits possible walk away penniless

Source: The business model for the creative industries is broken | Money | The Guardian

sometimes i wonder why anyone take up acting or the performing arts, because i keep hearing and reading it does not pay well. this article says the same thing.

it reminds me  a bit of those people in the gold rush going bankrupt mining for gold whilst those who cater for them make money.

i can only see here that passion for something overrides common sense, people want so much to act and perform, they dont care if they dont make any money out of it. and that the only way is to get yourself middle class parents willing to help you.

Incredible Artworks Made Entirely From Plasticine | Londonist

10 May

Incredible Artworks Made Entirely From Plasticine | Londonist.

i get this website londonist notify me of events happening in london. i get sent them daily.

usually there are so many, that it is near impossible to go to all of them, so i am very selective.

today i got this about this artist, henry hudson, and from the pics in the page, he is incredible.

the pics are unusual, in that u can enlarge them and see the details. and they are really intricate details.

 it is worth looking at his drawings too. u can see how the drawings are very different from the final product.

it makes me want to see his latest work on show at sothebys. they are meant to be seen by potential buyers at the auction later. it ends on 29th may, but there is nothing to prevent ordinary people going there to see it, even if we cannot afford to buy it. to me just being able to see it is enough. i dont really want to possess these works of art.

it is the beauty of living in london, where we can see such art, at no cost and such a lot of different types of art too. such a lot of  really talented people around and we can see their works if we live in london.

added. 11.5.15 4.40pm monday 2015 i went there today to see the art work. the receptionist was very welcoming.  i really enjoyed it, we are completely allowed to wander around, without any restrictions, and we can get as close as we like to the art work, no glass separating us from it. i think it lovely for the authorities to let us do that. and no sign saying no photography allowed either. so i did take some photos but really u can see the works online on their website and it is far better viewing than from any photo i take.

there were 3 more art works that were not featured in the website. an extraordinary achievement i think and from the booklet explaining the art, about the different stages of a chinese man in his progression from coming to london to study medicine at kings college to changing course and becoming a artist instead and his subsequent downfall, i learnt that all the art work is sold, except for the last one which the artist kept for himself. it is the last one where he is in jail.

 i thought the price of the art is very reasonable, only £65,000 and might even be  really low, i would have thought it would cost at least £100,000 each. they are so big and intricate and must involve hours of work, as well as artistry. well worth going to see. it is very tempting to touch the work, as the texture and raised plasticine is very tactile. but i resisted that urge as it wont do to disturb the art that way. the artist had done superb work it would be a shame to mar it by touching it. i wonder how long plasticine can last… unlike paint it might get brittle with age. that would be a pity if the work deteriorates with age. 

i won a year’s membership to the tate

3 Dec

Guess what! I got an email from the tate Britain, saying I won a full year’s membership to the tate. its worth £69, or £62 by direct debit.

I was there a few days ago, because i got an invitation slipped through my letter box, a card with free entry to the prize draw, to an evening there.

There were guided tours and the library was opened to us… and a private viewing of the exhibitions, the one I saw was called ‘Art under attack’ about the destruction of statues and catholic images under the reformation initiated by henry Vlll when he seceded from Rome and set up his own church of England. Normally u have to pay to see it, but that night, it was free. when i was there looking at these disfigured religious images, because the new church forbids it saying it was worshipping images, it reminded me of islam and its taboo against images too.

I think they gave this invite to all the flats in this housing estate, as it is so near to it. I went for the refreshments … there was white wine and orange juice, I chose the juice as I don’t really like white wine. There were bowls of nuts, and crisps. 

When I went I was hoping to get the prize… as the upstairs members area is really a nice place to eat and to hang about. With my membership, I can access that and eat there. Though maybe not eat there so much haha… as I don’t know how much they charge and it is likely to be a lot. Still, it is a nice place to bring people to and also I can see all the exhibitions free and can bring a guest to see it free too. and it is not confined to the tate britain, it covers the tate modern at bankside too.

For me, it will be another nice place, apart from the library, to hang out when I want to get out of my flat. maybe they will have free newspapers.
I guess it will be even better if I can afford to eat there… that would really be putting the place to full use. Haha. 

i should correct myself and say i can afford to eat there of course, though whether i will want to or not depands on how much salt they put in their dishes. it is likely to be a lot, if i know anything about food for the public.