REPORTING ON ART AND FOOD from Troubled Places

Warning : This is a modern-primitive writing website, of impressionist rather than informative character.

Sunny bushes at Crouch End, from the series The Triumph of the Good News 2020

27 November: The Triumph of the Good News series - NATIONAL GALLERY and V&A TO REOPEN ON 2 DECEMBER

"Together with Extended Artemisia opening hours and a new display by 2020 National Gallery Artist in Residence: Rosalind Nashashibi; the National Gallery opens an exhibition, in the Sunley Room, showcasing artworks by primary school children from across the UK in the 25th annual Take One Picture exhibition (until 31 January 2021, admission free - don't forget to pre-book though). Each year the Gallery invites primary schools nationwide to focus on one of its paintings and respond creatively to its themes, subject matter, historical context, or composition. With the aim of promoting the visual arts across the curriculum and inspiring a lifelong love of art, this year the National Gallery picked Men of the Docks (1912) by George Bellows (1882–1925) as the source of inspiration." NG press release

"Coinciding with reopening on 2nd December, the V&A today announces its largest ever installation of children’s artworks as part of a special free display. All Will Be Well: Children’s Rainbows from Lockdown, invites visitors to revisit this powerful moment in which the image of a rainbow – a long-standing symbol of hope – took on new meaning as a collective expression of support and solidarity." V&A press release

 


Ian in Lyon, in the autumn of 2008. After the election of Sarkozy the riots in Lyon lasted for months. Students and collegians protested, continuously bitten, shot with rubber bullets and dragged unconscious by the feet by all sorts of men double their size, heavily armed by the State. By December, I got tired of the sight - my university was already occupied for three months - and I decided that it’s time for us to leave France. One can only witness thus much violence. Strangely, none of this was reported by the international or even the national media. Violence, is a lonely place to be, especially when it's a national sport.

France - Violence vs Universalism

Has anybody paid attention to the extraordinary amount of nonsense going on in France lately? And more than the French-normal amount of bullying and violence?

The most racist state in the world - France; which is also the most police one - the one where police are more criminal, dirty and perverted than the criminal contingent - had passed even more self-protecting laws, making states like the Bulgarian and say... the Georgian look civilised, free - the word ‘democracy’ isn't any longer a part of my dictionary, for the same reasons as say Atlantida isn't. Actually I might start saying Atlantida instead of ‘democracy’ as equally mythical - and safe.

I don't think the world have paid enough attention that French MPs have voted " Article 24 of the law, which will make it a crime punishable by a year in prison and a €45,000 fine to “publish, by any means and in any medium, the face or any other identifying feature” of a police officer or gendarme."*..

Furthermore - just listen to this - journalists will need accreditation to report on demonstrations ^^ (my brows lifted twice). Imagine! While policie will be free to fly drones filming all demonstrators at all times. ^^

Suppose Trump has done it! The whole episode makes Trump look like a very light shade of orange next to a DARK ORANGE MACRON.

And don't forget what the Dark Orange Macron did only a week ago - "President Emmanuel Macron of France called me on Thursday afternoon from his gilded office in the Élysée Palace to drive home a complaint. He argued that the Anglo-American press, as it’s often referred to in his country, has blamed France instead of those who committed a spate of murderous terrorist attacks "** writes Ben Smith…

Thinking about it, I can hardly imagine something more stupid than pickin up the phone and asking a journalist to unwirte what they have already written. It is worse than asking people to stop thinking what they are thinking - it just doesn’t work.

Then, apparently " after a wave of complaints from readers and an angry call from Mr. Macron’s office, The Financial Times took the article off the internet". What a shame; but also not surprising at all - bubbles burst under pressure. It turns out that the Financial Times, exactly like so many other media-outlets that I use are nothing more than a Bubble Media - the one voicing the Champagne Socialist establishment, the one predominantly busy with self-protection and perpetuation.

"I asked him whether his vocal complaints about the American media weren’t themselves a little Trumpian — advancing his agenda through high-profile attacks on the press." Ben Smith continues.

With all honesty, the whole situation doesn’t worry me much. It’s a Bubble Media after all, of course it will take off an article upon the command of a president. Why would they stand behind an opinion, a writer, a position? The stratum the bubble media represents has neither message, nor mission no more. Just an impulse to survive - never mind a vehicle of progress.

The second reason for me to be relaxed is the fact that fortunately, nowadays, we have all the other media; the one in the hands of millions of people that - like me - bear witness of French institutionalised and popular violence and racism. As the subject, twelve years later, is still painful to me🔻, I won’t go into details - for example of how children are systematically bullied by the scholar system and marginalized since a very early age. Verily, in France the first and most effective tool for forced desintegraton of foreing children is the French educational system - but will only say : 500 cv’s signed with my Arab surname ‘Said’ were met with total deafening silence despite containing DEA Science Po from IEP Lyon II entry; the same cv sent signed with a fictional ‘Ivanova’ had a feedback every single time such as response emails, phone calls, phone-interviews, interview-invitations, or at least polite apologies and promises to be “kept in mind for future openings”. The difference in the treatment with the two different surnames was so big, that I immediately invented a third one “Lecomte-Faberger” just for fun, but this is another story.

Because of this simple fact I don’t want to listen to any French talks about “Universalism”. France is the furthest away of “Universalism” that any country could possibly be. Any South African Zulu, Ethiopian Karo, Nigerian Yoruba, Namibian Himba, Tanzanian Maasai, Bulgarian from any random village, Tagin from India, Kalash from Pakistan, Tsaatan from Mongolia, basic thug from Moscow, Banu Asad from Iraq, Miao and Uyghur from Chia or Londoner from Bethnal Green or Berber from Barbes IS MORE UNIVERSALIST in heart and deeds that 99% of the French souche that I personally met during my eight years in France. Both my grandmothers, the Bulgarian and the Iraqi, had more universalism in the nail of their small toe, than 99% of the French put together. Basically, if there is a nation, without a universalist bone in their body - it’s the French.

And no, I don’t want multiculturalism in France, I want what the French want, but don’t have - I want universalism in France. People talk about things they don’t have: money, sex, universalism. The more you lack it - the more you bang about it. I didn’t search multiculturalism when I went to France - I was searching for universalism and integration. But in this regard, just as in any other - it takes two to tango and the other side didn’t show up. La France n'est jamais au rendez-vous.  France's "universalism" is not less uniform than Arianism. 

I think that France should go to the court in Hague for that. I am sure there will be tens of thousands of people with Muslim surnames to start a group legal claim for work discrimination against France. And I will join in gladly.

Last but not least, it should be reminded that in France children as young as thirteen go to prison. It is December now, a naturally dark month… I would wait for a brighter time to dig in my darkest memories of France and tell the story of children as young as eleven handcuffed in police stations and other facilities - ugly outraging sights. A glimpse of this ugliness could be seen in the video bellow. It depicts youngsters from the Lycée Saint-Exupéry, in Mante-la-Jolie - around 30 miles west of Paris - lined up kneeling on the floor with their hands behind their head.

Oh, and before I forget - I did mes études approfondies🔽 illegally in France, because just the year I applied for a student’s visa, the French Embassy in Sofia have sold all the student visas to human traffickers and I had to study in clandestinity, while the French authorities preferred to have Bulgarian involuntary prostitutes than Bulgarian students. No, you can’t swipe this fact under the carpet - I will neither forget it, nor forgive it.🔽🔽

Macron is a natural continuation of Sarkozy - from a little to an even smaller a man. Knowing that Sarkozi is only 1.66 m, I am not sure how Macron with his 1.75m manages to look shorter. Obviously, we know why he looks more orange than Trump.

Macron is a natural continuation of Sarkozy - from a little to an even smaller a man. Knowing that Sarkozi is only 1.66 m, I am not sure how Macron with his 1.75m manages to look shorter. Obviously, we know why he looks more orange than Trump.

…. And next time think twice before calling a journalist, you Dark-Orange McMan…. When you get the impulse to call a journalist, Johnny Depp instead, he bullied and beat a woman, you bully and beat a nation… you will find a point in common somewhere and he might talk some sense in you.

Violence, not universalism is France’s bone.

The silver lining. Actually, there are plenty of those here:  a)Whosoever has lived with a Muslim surname in France, would apreciate life elsewhere intensively. b) Whosoever has lived with a Muslim surname in France, would apreciate life in France under a sudden passage to the surname Lecomte-Faberger immensely. c) C'est fini with the State-level competitive propaganda. Ça n'existe plus.

Macron, n'empêche que tu est con, the price for taking off this article is £250 000 - my new, turn bubble-media fee.

Ben Smith, don’t tell me that you took off your article for free...?

“Uygur camp” in France or Vive la France multicouleurs, vive la France arc en ciel

Every state school in France can turn from one minute to the next into a “Uygur camp” for youngsters of all ethnicities.

The video from Lycée Saint-Exupéry has already been seen 1M times. Read my lips ONE MILLION TIMES. How stupid Monsieur Macron must be to think that picking up the phone with strange demands to an American journalist will settle the image of... actually whom? France? Himself? La Marianne?

In the other hand what his desperate, futile gesture shows is that la France is deep dans la m*rde. Not least because of the massive criminal structure called French Police, which - here I'll speculate and reckon - already rackets the French State - from where the approval of article 24 - is and will be a growing problem for each consecutive French government and obviously for the French nation. The criminal structure which won't be susceptible to a reformed or re-education; in the lines of which the number of suicides of policemen will continue to imcrease.

🔻 The systematic witnessing of violence, discrimination, bullying and racism can be very damaging. Having grown between worlds I have developed a thick, shining armour to protect ME against those, but witnessing others - the North Africans - suffer in mass wasn’t something I was equipped for.

🔽The Diplôme d'études approfondies or DEA (Degree of in-Depth Studies) was a doctoral programme degree delivered in France from 1964 to 2011. It was a postgraduate degree (diplôme de troisième cycle), aimed to prepare for advanced doctoral studies.

🔽🔽It goes in the same un-forget-forgivable line of the Foreign Office issuing me the temporary settlers status (suitable for EU citizens having been in the UK less than 6 months ) despite my application for permanent status on the grounds of five tax-return declarations. Last summer my son told me “Mum, you are full of anger”. “You bet, I am son. You bet I am”. Above all, I can't forgive the disillusionment.

* For French Article 24 in The Financial Times here 

** For Ben Smith's article in The New Yourk Times here 

26 November 2020


Unconscious Coupling, The Soup, with a ballerina metal figurine as a reminder that Gwyneth Paltrow, the woman, has zero rock’n’roll bone in her body.

Unconscious Coupling - The Soup

I’ve been cooking Unconscious Coupling, the soup, sincever Gwyneth Paltrow consciously uncoupled Chris Martin (2014 in case you wonder). Which came handy, as my English manfriend P becomes psychologically unstable whenever he thinks that lately he hasn't had enough greens on his menu. Thus combining two and two - English manfriend and greens from one hand and conscious uncoupling and avocados from other hand the genius Unconscious Coupling was born.

It is “unconscious” because it doesn’t need a recipe; one just needs to put whatever green stuff one has at hand. And “coupling” because they get together in the saucepan - “uncoupling” happens on the store-shelves; in the saucepan, it’s “coupling” that's going on. I like some of the things in the soup to be cooked, while others to be blended raw. This way, I couple Soup and Salad in one. Say in the summer, when nice little courgettes are around, I blend them raw and the soup becomes fluffy. In today’s version the raw elements were spinach and fresh coriander.

This version of Unconscious Coupling, the one with the fresh spinach and coriander, is delicious eaten cold as well - P likes all food peeping hot, but this is weird - with plenty of lemon juice.

25 November 2020

New on 25 is "БГ МАЩЕХА" a new Bulgarian language column describing some of the cases I fall upon while working with Bulgarian in London, here

 'Miel' is  under La Bouf here

'Feet-Funny' is under CW WB 2020 here 

WA Covent Garden Made my Afternoon Tea. By now, I am sure, all the cake&pastry loving tribe is long aware of WA Cafe, the Japanese Patisserie and their remarkable borderline unsweet desserts. Walking back from South Kensington to Islington, I passed by Covent Garden today and got WA's matcha tiramisu and matcha swiss roll with black beans heart.... utterly delicious, but above all - as guilt-free as heavenly light and quazi sugar-free; together WA Covent Garden Made my Afternoon Tea. By now, I am sure, all the cake&pastry loving tribe is long aware of WA Cafe, the Japanese Patisserie and their remarkable borderline unsweet desserts. Walking back from South Kensington to Islington, I passed by Covent Garden today and got WA's matcha tiramisu and matcha swiss roll with black beans heart.... utterly delicious, but above all - as guilt-free as heavenly light and quazi sugar-free. 24 November about 1530. The other cake featuring on this photo is M&S Chocolate Birthday cake - now WA Covent Garden Made my Afternoon Tea. By now, I am sure, all the cake&pastry loving tribe is long aware of WA Cafe, the Japanese Patisserie and their remarkable borderline unsweet desserts. Walking back from South Kensington to Islington, I passed by Covent Garden today and got WA's matcha tiramisu and matcha swiss roll with black beans heart.... utterly delicious, but above all - as guilt-free as heavenly light and quazi sugar-free. 24 November about 1530. The other cake featuring on this photo is M&S Chocolate Birthday cake - now £9.60 or so. 24 November about 1530. The other cake featuring on this photo is M&S Chocolate Birthday cake - now £1. Kirsch creme, as well as brandy, upgrades everyman's winter afternoon tea. Ooopsss, forgot to mention: this afternoon tea is had with coffee...

Essex Road, 20 November about 0801

20 November - Ça commence

Ça commence. Red posters with angry Antifa fists is the last thing I want to see early morning on my walk to work. Yet, this was the first thing I saw today when I opened my front door. If Islington isn't red enough as it is... Which was the precise reason why I didn't want Oldman Biden to win US elections.

As if Brexit - when the nation showed its racist horns - was not enough, now we'll have to have Antifa, Black Blocks, Maoists, Marxists and all the pink-red-purple spectre clownade and muppetry showing off around town.

This of course en liue of theatre, opera, museum, gallery, dance.

A sad red place... Sad red planet.

19 November - A Half-Iraqi person dismayed

A Half-Iraqi person is dismayed how Blair is still into Labour. If being in a champagne-socialist bubble counts as being "into Labour"....

Wait a minute, what am I talking? Being into a champagne-socialist bubble is a synonyme of "being into Labour".

What happens when one is into a champagne-socialist bubble? I have no idea, what happens within; but from outside the bubble it looks like this: You drink champagne, you eat brioche, you do nation and worldwide mischief while saying things like "Free, free Palestine" and "The Future of Iraq and Middle East Peace Proces" instead of "Let them eat cake".

Nature's cognitive shock, 17 November, about 0840.

17 November - The Cognitive Shock or The Giraffe in London

On my way to work today, seeing a blossoming tree I thought “The Triumph of the Good News - as a promise that nature and life will regenerate again - is already here” and approached to take a picture of the blossom. When close, I realized that there is something wrong with “the good news”. It was kind of “spoiled” by yellow-reddish autumnal leaves. And while there is nothing wrong with yellow-reddish leaves in November; there is a cognitive shock to be lived at the sight of pale-lilac tender blossom growing alongside this-year’s autumnal leaves. For indeed, in the last four-five years, the first signs of spring were coming as early as late December, a few days before Christmas, which provoked the idea that: as on this island, lately, trees and bushes start to blossom on time for Christmas there is no need of decorating coniferous trees in the houses. People could celebrate “The Triumph of the Good News” around any blossoming tree or bush in the garden. For indeed what do Christmas decorations represent if not a metaphor for blossom and fruit? Which sadly reminded me of the surreal communist slogan promising the masses an eternal spring: “September will be May”. It seems that Nature is in cognitive shock - not certain whether it is autumn or spring, November or April.

…. And if only Nature alone was in cognitive shock…

Bulgaria is in cognitive shock as well. Of all Eastern European EU countries, Bulgaria is the most brainwashed by Russia. This year, the brainwashing went in one two-edged direction : COVID19 doesn’t exist, it's fiction invented to cell vaccines aka chip-implants. At present, with 40% of the tested population testing positive for COVID19, with many of the ill suffering severe symptoms, Bulgaria lives a national cognitive shock - All the nation suffers from a disease it believes doesn’t exist. …. And if only Bulgaria alone was in cognitive shock…

I am in cognitive shock too. My usual existential shock - ongoing since birth and increasing since the year of 2000 when I left my hometown and home-country, I went to France and found out how unfraternal, unegaliterian, and unfree the unbubled world, which at the time I was confusing with the general notion of “The West”, is - had turned into a cognitive one after the US elections; combined with the fact that once more I was called to work Bank in a hospital♤, because all the interpreters on a pay-roll are “working” from home; therefore, there is nobody to do the job for real. As the managers are also “working” from home, I am doing plenty of their job too. These macro and micro cosmatic facts led me to the realisation that I am a mighty multitalanted, multitasking human being and also an obscenely naive biorobot. Crown of Creation and a dispensable Bottom of the Food Chain element. Cognitive shock.

Thus today, since the very morning, I feel like a Giraffe in London. A Giraffe in London is more incongruous than an Englishman in New York, I am sure.

A Giraffe in London, is more incongruous even than a Giraffe in Baghdad as described by the poet:

“Eaten down to their skeletons, the giraffes looked prehistoric, unreal, their necks too fragile, too graceful for the 21st Century.”

It seems though that in this point in time, mainly exotic, prehistoric animals keep the world turn around.

♤ In theory, in this hospital, bank staff during is prohibited since the first Lockdown... but after all, someone has to work.

*Full poem “ The Baghdad Zoo” by Brian Turner in text and audio here 


@saudi_in_london

Weapon of Vice, by Bambi, Pipckerying Street or how the symbolism of a piece of art might change from one day to another during a pandemic, mid March


Shamsia the Clairvoyant, Women By Women exhibition, see bellow. 8 March or couple of weeks before the quaranteen.

In the Times of COVID19

I wonder what France does with its ban on face covering...?

"The bill prohibits the wearing of face-coverings in public places and also applies to foreign tourists visiting France. The law imposes a fine of up to €150, and/or participation in citizenship education, for those who violate the law." Wiki

Other contemporary practice that in the Times of COVID19 strikes a particularly rotten pose is the one of the Admin*-Abattoirs as I call them.

Think of the new Camden Municipality building, the one next to Google at the otherwise so luring new Pancras Square, with the exciting postcode N1C. Or also think of the Chelsea and Westminster Hospital NHS Foundation HR, the one at Chelsea Harbour (this shamelessly boggling expression of greed that hadn't allowed the growth of a single tree amongst the sardinesquashed buildings...posh? mon queue). I am saying these admin-abbatoirs where up to hundred people are jammed desk to desk with not as much as a cubicle, like the ones in American films, to separate them; and where staff 'meets clients' in massive equally unpersonalized lobbies (overheated or hipper cold respectively), I mean these monstrosities are as a pure health hazard as a chemical attack.

And before my Lady of Elevation, the Starry Badger ** nags me for sueshoutingattea***, which is the contemporary English for unconstructive criticism, I will say : Nay, I am not sueshoutingattea and here is my sconeandclottedcream which is the contemporary English for "having a positive idea nearly solution":

Whenever you've created a workplace for humans - step back, squint your eyes and examine the creation. If it looks like admin-abattoir, start again thinking aesthetics and respect. If aesthetic and respect are incorporated health conditions would be bettered too.

Admin Life Matters.

*By Admin I mean all working for public institutions.

**Caitlin Moran aka CW

*** For contemporary English entry 'sueshoutingattea' follow the link and read N1 ' Yorkshire Tea' here

 

Shield! by Shamsia and Shamsia by Tahmina, at Women By Women exhibition, by ActionAid at OXO Tower, until 8 March

Women By Women and Niqab for Men

An example of strongly talented clairvoyance : Shamsia wears a mask before everybody else. Unfortunately the photos on this exhibition are not dated, so we don't know how much before everybody else exactly.

Shamsia was born as Afghan refugee in Tehran, where the Women-Fearing regime did not allow her to study art (as in addition to Women-Fearing the regime in Tehran is also a Muslim-slaying one - not only it slays Syrians but it also deprives from all rights and dignity the Afghani refugees seeking shelter on its lands).

Today, Shamsia is a street artist, fine arts lecturer and professor in sculpture at the University of Kabul. And hopefully for many a year to come despite all manmade wars and batmade viruses. Else to speak despite all Batmen.

Shield!

By the way, suddenly, in the eternal match Iran vs Saudi Arabia, SA scores yet another goal - Saudi women's gear is more en vogue with the last virus fighting trends. Lately, I am thinking shouldn't we all, women and men, start wearing full niqab?... for couple of months at least. 

Women By Women exhibition, by ActionAid is at OXO Tower, until 8 March


Extinction Rebelion visiting Antony Gormley

Fly now Pay Later - Extinction Rebellion at Antony Gormley

An endearing, lonely extinction rebellionist was a live female sculpture amidst Gormley's Iron Men.


Sea of Tranquility Sea of Plastic by Polite Extinction, @politeextinction

Sea of Tranquility Sea of Plastic

Mare Tranquilitatis is a lunar mare that sits within the Tranquilitatis Basin on the Moon.

Polite Extinction, went to Goldsmiths BA, MA, Museology in Ed, PGCE university of Brighton and is currently in artistic residence at Budapest.


Here We Go Again or Screaming Brexit

Credit @art_decoded. Follow @art_decoded on Instagram

Screaming Johnson, an ahead of its time image of Boris as captured in September 2020 by Francis Bacon

8 September 2019

"Oh, Theresa May...you tried so hard but in the end you couldn't make Brexit happen. We just hope that you are not taking it as badly as this painting is making you out to be." @art_decoded

"If this seems familiar, it is because it is based on Francis Bacon's 'Study of Velasquez's Portrait of Pop Innocent X' or The Screaming Pope as it is otherwise known.", @art_decoded continues its strict analysis.

Yet, Laaf just discovered an apocryphal edition of Nostradamus' Chronicles in which it is revealed that Bacon's inspiration for The Screaming Pope wasn't his tumultuous relationship with Peter Lacy as largely thought, but a vision of Britain's Prime Minister in September 2020.

The apocryphal chronicles reveal that the vision came to Bacon at about 0710 at the junction of Greek Street and Old Compton Street, Soho on 25th of May 1967, after a drinking night with Lucien Freud, Frank Auerbach, Henrietta Moraes and Lady Caroline Blackwood.

"You will paint a Prime Minister caught in a scary stuff called Brexit, ne cherche pas a comprendre, and you will call it Screaming Pope" a mighty voice whispered in Bacon's ear the chronicles further unveil.

Inspiration courtesy @art_decoded.

Follow @art_decoded on Instagram

It's one of Laaf's favourites

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