Wildwood: A Journey Through Trees by Roger Deakin is a highly individual book, unique even. Ostensibly about various types of trees and their wood, it combines natural history, diary and travelogue, and is written with passion, enthusiasm and personal flourishes which make it impossible not to like it.
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On Thursday, Mark came to Sheffield and we visited the artistst Peep (Paul P Priestley) in his studio.
I took lots of photos. I was blown away by his work. It was incredibly varied, but almost all of it drew heavily upon religious sources (in particular, the Bible) and featured salvaged and adapted childrens’ toys (often motorised) in the guises of various mythical beings. Incredible, like Jan Svankmajer does Dante only gaudier and more beautiful. I absolutely love his work, I don’t remember ever being quite this excited about a living artist. I hope to produce a piece on him for FAD, although at the moment I’m not quite sure where to start.
We were spending a day in Paris, and everyone had their own idea of which Paris attraction they would choose for their desert island. My own choice was the Centre Pompidou, primarly because I had heard it housed the world’s largest collection of paintings by Kandinsky. My desire to visit dated back to the days when I could be single-minded enough to have a favourite anything (musician = Bill Laswell, author = M. John Harrison, artist = Wassily Kandinsky, film = Eraserhead, etc. etc.), and although my tastes now change more from day-to-day, I was still keen to see some of the great man’s work. I had only ever seen 2 or 3 Kandinskys, small ones at that, at the Tate gallery in London and the National gallery in Cardiff, and it always amazed me how pictures that appear so flat and graphical on the printed page could disguise a human 3rd dimension of brush-strokes and coloured sands applied to the canvas.
Continue reading Kandinsky in Paris and the Pompidou Centre