Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Folded Away In The Memory Of Nature With Her Toys.

The Gilbert and George show at Tate Modern ... a massive, indeed comprehensive, exhibition featuring the work of perhaps the the most relevant and provocative visual artists working today. Humorous, moving and enlightening, a stunning parade of great images, a veritable cathedral of art.
But even more heart-lifting, for me, was the gift shop. Quite apart from the intellectually respectable stuff like the exhibition catalogue, signed posters, a massive two volume retrospective and DVDs, there is a cavalcade of memorabilia designed by G&G ... stuff that I didn't know existed but now can't live without. The G&G swear box (PAY UP OR F*~k OFF!), the G&G Rubik cube, the G&G plastic bag, G&G ties ... and perhaps best of all, the G&G Singing Sculpture wooden toy - press the button in the base and they move, jerkily (very life-like). How desirable is that? A thing of beauty and a joy forever.




I am a sucker for this sort of thing ... my great regret in life is the serious dearth of James Joyce memorabilia ... I am the proud owner of a couple of Joycean mugs, but this in no way assuages my hunger. If it was out there I would buy it ... Molly saw a website this weekend featuring famous figure finger puppets and fridge magnets ... including Joyce - it was love at first sight. You can go into a million museum and gallery gift shops and see the usual suspects again and again ... Virginia Bloody Woolf, Oscar Wilde and Shakespeare ... their drearily predictable visages reproduced again and again and again on bookmarks and notebooks and tea towels. Where's the Joyce tat? I'm a captive audience, I've got money to burn on tosh like this. I feel my life is not complete without a house chock full of Joycean detritus ... the J.J. action figure (press a button and he dances a jig, cracking obscene jokes in Latin); the J.J. snow globe (snow falling softly, softly falling); the J.J. board game - throw the dice and move a collection of tiny figurines (I bagsy Bloom) around a two-dimensional Dublin, June 16, 1904; J.J. perfume (the smellow melons of Molly Bloom's rump or a fine tang of faintly scented urine); the J.J. wine collection, each vintage carrying a Joycean image and quotation; J.J. spectacles, hats, canes, comedy ties ... the possibilities are endless and intoxicating.

Molly and I saw a James Joyce tea set in Bewlay's in Dublin once, and I foolishly didn't snap it up there and then ... do you know, there hasn't been a day since when I haven't thought about that tea set.


I'm thinking of going on that awful TV programme Dragon's Den and pitching this as a business proposal to the hatchet-faced capitalist scum that run the show ... after all, you've got to speculate, they do say, to accumulate.

21 Comments:

Blogger St. Anthony said...

I also plan another range of quality products ... Jean Genet KY, Proust bakery goods, Burroughs kiss-me-quick hats (with the bands emblazoned with such classic Burroughsian quotes as No Got C'lom Friday, Show You Something Beserk Machine and Would I Give A Shit About These People?).
Hell, let's think really big ... I could market deluxe William S. Burroughs orgone accumulators ... bring you off in your dry goods in seconds.

11:29 AM  
Blogger Tim Footman said...

But do the pushy G&G figures actually sing? ('Underneath the Arches', wasn't it?)

Ballard Dinky toys?

Beckett bowler hats?

Auden wrinkle cream?

10:11 AM  
Blogger rockmother said...

I'm off to see G&G tomorrow - that's all very encouraging. I LOVE those figures - I have to have one. What about pisschrist G&G potties for children? Or am I being a little to skewed today? I'd buy one.

10:22 AM  
Blogger rockmother said...

PS: I've always wanted a furry tea cup and saucer since seeing a picture in a book on Surrealism when I was a kid.

10:23 AM  
Blogger St. Anthony said...

The figures are, unfortunately, mute ... leaving the lucky owner to supply the busking.
Now, Ballard dinky toys, that's something I'd love to see ... a little Limo with an Elizabeth Taylor figure inside.

Same goes for any breakfast in fur cups and saucers ... there's a huge gap in the market out there.

1:44 PM  
Blogger El Duderino said...

Someone shoould really be be doing
Burroughs mugs filled with jism or something.

Hang on! I see a gap in the market here. Dragon's Den, here I come (not literally).

12:52 AM  
Blogger St. Anthony said...

Burroughs mugs filled with jism ... the mind reels ... and if anyone out there is marketing such a commodity, put me down for a couple.
I'd like to see someone selling Wild Boy outfits ... special jockstraps and roller blades.

7:58 AM  
Blogger Tim Footman said...

Damien Hirst's line of lamb chops?

12:13 PM  
Blogger St. Anthony said...

Would that be with mint sauce or formaldehyde?

1:18 PM  
Blogger rockmother said...

Hirst microdots? Emin fucktents? Pots of Michael Landy's fresh weeds? The list is endless...

1:28 AM  
Blogger St. Anthony said...

An Emin tent ... for that camping weekend with a difference.
There are artifacts in fiction and movies I'd love to see marketed - the Citizen Kane snowglobe and sled, or a Burroughs line of dildos ... Steely Dan 1, 2 and 3 ... not that I've much use for that particular article myself.
Somone should put out a range of little cuddly toys of the baby from Eraserhead.

7:44 AM  
Blogger rockmother said...

Yes - or you could just have ordinary erasers in the shape of Eraserhead. Does what it says on the tin!

10:07 AM  
Blogger St. Anthony said...

Little Henry figures that double as rubbers ... how excellent would that be?

1:50 PM  
Blogger Dr Anthony Donovan said...

Crucifix dildo from The Exorcist

4:45 PM  
Blogger kek-w said...

A scary Max Earnst bird that chases you thru yr dreams! LOL!

Or a Loplop cuddly toy.

11:10 PM  
Blogger St. Anthony said...

Exorcist dildos ... for that niche market. Supply your own blasphemous dialogue while using it.
Loplop - king of the birds. That would scare the life out of you, waking up to see that nestling on the pillow next to you.

7:02 AM  
Blogger rockmother said...

I always wanted a real life Chitty Chitty Bang Bang car so I could escape when people were annoying me! Or just a pair of ruby slippers I could click and whoosh! Gone!

8:02 AM  
Blogger Dr Anthony Donovan said...

Rockmother, cattle-prod is my weapon of choice. I had a model Chitty car as a kid, though; complete with flip-out wings. First film I ever saw at the flix (cinema), that was. Second was 2001.

7:16 PM  
Blogger St. Anthony said...

The first film I saw at the pictures was Bambi ... a traumatic event.
Lily had it bought for her for Christmas, and I'm still trying to summon up the courage to watch it.

10:36 AM  
Blogger rockmother said...

The first film I was taken to see was Tom Thumb at the Hammersmith Gaumont age 4! Not only was the cinema really dark and scary but the film was genuinely terrifying - in particular the horse chase scene. We had to leave as I was too traumatised to carry on. To this day - I have never seen the end.

7:24 PM  
Blogger St. Anthony said...

Is that the one with Terry Thomas and Peter Sellers? Classic stuff ... although I've seen the film a number of times, and I still couldn't tell you how it ends.

1:50 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home