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Review: Mary Quant at the V&A

Mary Quant is the pinnacle of 60s youth culture, revolutionising fashion and culture in a decade known for change. The V&A’s current exhibition honouring her both acts as a frozen capsule and transcends linear time. The exhibition’s historicism plays out through transporting you to her original BAZAAR shop in Knightsbridge, gazing into its shop window. The mannequins have playful poses, with some lying on the floor and jumping through the air, and hold eccentric props that Quant used herself – most notably a red lobster attached to a gold chain. This encouraged the exhibition’s engagement with visitors, replicating Quant’s vital and innovative interaction with the customer. Continue reading Review: Mary Quant at the V&A

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Nan Goldin at the Tate Modern

“In spite of it all, people have a need to couple. Even when they’re being destroyed, they’re still coupling. The Ballad of Sexual Dependency starts and ends with this premise, but in between there is the question of as to why there is this need to couple and why it is so difficult.” – Nan Goldin (1986)  Continue reading Nan Goldin at the Tate Modern

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So Scandi: In praise of “Summer” by Karl Ove Knausgård

Short trousers, redcurrants, summer rain, campsites, tears, electric hand mixers, intelligence, ice cubes, skin and plums. These are some of the objects and phenomena that Norwegian author, Karl Ove Knausgård describes in his book, Summer. Continue reading So Scandi: In praise of “Summer” by Karl Ove Knausgård

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Review: Frankissstein by Jeanette Winterson

Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein is one of the rare pieces of literature that sits in the Venn diagram overlap of edgy teens and Romantic scholars. A tale of creation and loss, ambition and remorse, love and grief, Shelley remains the queen of innovative paralleling, not just in themes but in her characters. Her unique frame narrative of letters, stories, and even her preface never ceases to impress me with its clever overlapping and, while some parts of the tale are so implausible as to seem ridiculous, her intricacy and exquisite language rightly puts Frankenstein in the literary canon.
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So Scandi: ‘The Architecture of Happiness’ – A celebration of Danish Architecture

If you have every visited or seen pictures of Copenhagen, your first thought if someone said “Danish architecture” would probably be of the quaint saffron, moss and rust coloured harbour buildings of Nyhavn. But this would not be the whole story. Over the past decades the Danish capital has transformed itself from a serene fisherman’s town into a dynamic, modern city. A transformation that is reflected … Continue reading So Scandi: ‘The Architecture of Happiness’ – A celebration of Danish Architecture

The Relevance of Religious Art Today

“Why should the devil have all the best tunes?” asked Methodist preacher George Whitefield in 1774. But did the devil ever? And does he still? As conservative and dated as ‘religious art’ might seem in the West (where religious practices have been somewhat marred by schisms, crusades, inquisitions, Nietzsche, existentialism, and that ever-pesky science), I think the paganity to which Whitefield referred has less of a cloven-hoofed power-stance over the arts than the reality of the situation might suggest. Not only were many of the modern antecedents and influences of contemporary Western artists religious, but a great number of today’s practitioners remain resolutely Christian in their outlook.

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Review: ArtSoc Exhibition Night

The spring exhibition for Exeter Art Society was held in the main ballroom of Reed Hall and the atmosphere of the night was permeated by music from the Exeter University Jazz Band. This ambitious showcase of art, music, and dance proved to be an incredibly enjoyable evening, and one that highlighted the amazing artistic talent of many students at Exeter. There was a wide selection … Continue reading Review: ArtSoc Exhibition Night