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Top 25 Art Blog - Creative Tourist

Climate Rush and Newham Flashmob

Liverpool St & Newham town hall, 7/8 Oct 2008

Written by Amelia

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Hello, treat treat Katie!! featured in our latest issue, prescription as part of the New Brasil section. It’s the vision of Hisato, who Amelia described as ‘a small portly man with the slightly pallid demeanour of someone who lives for the night”. He’s a very well respected DJ, and I think this says a lot about the key idea behind his latest EP, ‘Girls’.

Opener ‘Don’t Panic (That’s The Way It Is)’ is drenched in the atmosphere of New Order’s ‘Blue Monday’ – famously the highest selling 7″ of all time, purely because of it’s popularity with DJs. Vocals come in the form of some super cool sounding girl, who I imagine to look exactly like the type you see standing in front of DJ booths in the hope of grabbing attention. It’s a song that I guess comes from Hisato’s time spent hanging around the super cool, Djing fashion shows and stuff like that. Considering the band is named in honour of Kate Moss herself, this is perhaps something to be expected.

My favourite track is ‘Female Moustache’. It has the feel of a soundtrack from a high octane action movie, building and plateauing, only to return to its peak moments of drama once again. You can imagine some bald guy with stubble diving between trains to it, or something like that anyway.

It finishes with ‘Today’s Tomorrow’s Breath’, something of a respite compared to the rest of the album. The vocals sound almost scary, sung by Hisato himself in what sounds like a cave.

The EP comes across like a party in your ears. It has all the aspects of really fun party music that has put Brazil on the musical map in recent years.

Having interviewed the girls who will be featuring in issue 10 of Amelia’s mag (keep an eye out for them), click I was keen to make a pit stop to their preview of their exhibition, look ‘in bed with the girls’.

The first thing that hits you as you enter the bubblegum pink Beverly Knowles Gallery in Notting hill is the burst of colour within all the photos. Cramming 12 years worth of staged portrait photography, capsule self portraiture and performance pieces in one smallish room gives their work an intensity. A few faves are the performance piece where a naked lady is adorned with various sweet treats such as: swiss rolls, tarts, custard creams. The performance piece reminded me of the oldsy english countryside picnics that now looks like a novel practice. With a priest sat next to her this set to unnerve the viewer.

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Also the smurfette pieces were cute and kitsch.

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Most of their work is playful, set with lavish sets, however I also like some of their black and white shots particularly Dungeness which are actually tiny.

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With so many different sets designs and images, these reflect two varied, bubbly personalities. They reference pop culture, the idea of Englishness, gender roles, nostalgia and desire in a fun yet also subtly dark way. So there really is something for everyone.

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Perhaps you’d like a pair of wizard boots? A caterpillar? some skeleton string? or a monster forest? Inventory of Parlour, ed an Australian designed jewellery label, more about offers treats for the imagination! A range of delectable pieces with intricate and distinctive designs that originate from another realm.

Katia, who studied textile design at RMIT University in Melbourne, was introduced to the wonderful world of jewellery when she spent some time living in London interning with the infamously unique Tatty Devine. The influence is clear – treating jewelry as a piece of art, creating something personal to illustrate the wearer. Katia’s own inspirations draw from the Parlour rooms of the 1800′s and the curious happenings within them. The pieces themselves are made mostly out of collages using text and vintage imagery from periodicals, catalogues and encyclopedias.

“A world of alakazams and abracadabras.. demented delights and a menagerie of oddities..”

Intrigued? Want to see more? Unlock the cabinet of goodies on the their blog and get a new lace for that neck!

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Photo: Dan Spinney

Despite my obsession with These New Puritans (we’ve all read the inspiring reviews from music boffs across the globe so its not necessary for me to rationalise this passion), medical neither time nor cash had granted me with a chance to witness them live, prescription until their set at the Amersham Arms. Perhaps it was dangerous levels of excitement which left me doubtful (or the fact that Derv from Amelia’s team wouldn’t stop chatting in my ear), but I couldn’t help but feel that I was left half empty.

There’s something about the intensity of delivery by lead vocalist Jack Barnett which just didn’t hit me as hard as my 5 year old Woolworth’s headphones. Its not that I’m not accusing them of being poor live performers, ‘Colours’, ‘Infinity ytinifnl’ and ‘Swords of truth’ resembled the album versions to a T, but all that intellectual equation and science stuff just seemed that little bit more magical without the hustle and bustle of a pub. Naturally These New Puritans took the opportunity to drop a few new tracks, which if this occasion is anything to go by, prove to be bordering on bland or atmospheric depending on your perspective or the volume of your glass.

Micachu and The Shape’s set wasn’t as enthralling as it should have been, mainly due to the venues poor sound. Teamed with a crowd that seemed preoccupied with having a chin wag, their music almost seemed to take a back seat. When I’ve seen them before, crowds are usually silenced by their magnificent performances, but I think most people were too preoccupied with drinking at that stage of the night. ‘Golden Phone’ did seem to divert people’s attention, and it’s definately still her standout track. She’s an artist destined for much bigger events this time next year.

Next we headed over to The Tavern to finish our night with sets from Loefah and Benga, and were subjected to some very garage heavy selections, which delighted some, but for me it just wasn’t too exciting. Soon after they had taken to the decks though, the speakers blew. It was announced that the line-up would be moved to the nearby Goldsmith’s Student Union Bar.

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Photo: Louis Hartnoll

We followed the crowds round the corner to where there was already a sizeable queue forming. I hate situations like this, when a mass of people is trying to get into a venue and the venue’s security sees it as an excuse to exercise their power by just being weird and annoying. Eventually they decided everybody had waited long enough an allowed us in. The choice of venue was strange, and didn’t really suit the music. Nevertheless, everyone was there to have a good time, and it’s difficult not to enjoy yourself in that type of environment.
So this morning I received an email shouting about NOISE, erectile an online arts showcase funded by the Arts Council & NWDA. The idea is to showcase art, ask music and fashion all conjured up by creative beings under 25. The curators include acclaimed industry professionals such as Badly Drawn Boy for music and Norman Rosenthal for fine arts. This month NOISE festival will cherry pick the crème de la crème for your viewing pleasure. Here’s a few things I spotted:

The talented miss amy brown, prescription who designed the cover of amelia’s mag issue 8 has her portfolio on here. She says that an average day consists of replying to e-mails, tea drinking, drawing, and wiping paint off my kitten Millie-Rad. She also comments that she has always loved drawing and just hope that people get as much enjoyment from looking at [her] work as [she]does making it! Have a peek at her work.

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patrick gildersleeves, aka wowow is inspired by the people of the world, patterns, paper, animals and plants. He likes to work with a pencil, felt tips and paint. His biggest influences are Inuit art, Ancient South American culture and drawings from the Far East.

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heres a cool image of promo shots for the electric circus band by ‘paul’
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6 by rae:
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clockface by chimere:
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brunch from brunch series by shauba:
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So if you want to inject a little brightness to your day or are seeking some inspiration go and check it out.

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It’s been a busy few days – I’ve been up early again with the Suffragettes to try and persuade city commuters that they should join the Climate Rush on Monday.

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getting ready in the station

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Tamsin sandwiched by commuters

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I’ve learnt that the amount of technical devices attached to your body is a direct indicator of whether you are likely to engage with a piece of paper coming your way. Commuters plugged into ipods are in their own little world and noone is going to disrupt that other place… and if you also have a mobile in your other hand you are doubly likely to ignore anyone else. Interesting, this site how we disassociate from the real world around us. Also a trend I have noticed that disheartens me – people with bikes are also more likely to ignore people who are flyering. Very saddening that – all the more I think because as a fellow bike rider I always expect people who ride to be on our side.

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flyering aplenty

That said, remedy many flyers were given out and since then the Suffragettes have been out every day all over town to try and raise awareness. I will be joining them on Friday afternoon in Soho (5.30pm in Soho Square if you fancy coming along) The more the merrier – we’re quite an arresting sight amongst all that grey.
On Saturday we’re going to be making more sashes at my house – if you fancy joining in email us. I am in east London and we plan to go out on the town afterwards dressed as Suffragettes, so come meet us and join in the fun!

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shaking a fist for the cameras

Then yesterday I hotfooted it over to Newham town hall in East London (well, more like District line slowfooted it. How slow is that tube line?!) to meet up with the Flashmob, there to oppose plans to expand City Airport.

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I love this golden light…

The council was meeting to make the final decision on whether expansion goes ahead and local group Fight the Flights directed a flashmob of about 30 people in a chant for the ITV cameras. Everyone was wearing distinctive STOP AIRPORT EXPANSION t-shirts. It was all over very quickly and I then had to slowfoot it back into town to do my jewelery class for the evening.

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flashmobbers still need lipstick

Unfortunately I have since found out that the council has given the go ahead to the expansion, but the evening was not without its drama. I’ve just spoken with Leo from Plane Stupid, who was one of some 25 people to present objections during the meeting, and it sounds like the locals put up a great fight. There were about 75 objectors in the audience who were “kicking off left, right and centre,” so that by the time the meeting drew to a close some hours later a lot of people had been removed for causing a ruckus. Leo was eventually removed for throwing paper airplanes.

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looks like Ken, of Barbie and Ken fame. is actually a highly groomed ITV reporter.

Apparently the local group will be taking the council to court on the grounds that there was no proper consultation – even though up to 13,000 people will be affected by increased noise pollution there have been no new measurements of noise since the year 2000, and only 10,000 letters have been sent out as part of a mandatory consultation.

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A local teacher explained that his students had been processing field data which showed that the noise levels are frequently reaching 85-95 decibels, and not the declared 57 decibels, over which the government considers noise to be a nuisance. Funny then, that the airport owners have forgotten to take new measurements in the past 8 years.
Leo described the yellow tie wearing owner as being totally complacent, safe in the knowledge that his plans would get the go ahead. In fact he was looking so smug that the locals even had a pop at him about it. I wasn’t there, but I can picture him in my mind’s eye. I bet he would have wound me up too.
The airport expansion may be mooted to go ahead, but don’t expect it to happen without a fight…

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sporting an E.On F.Off badge in a hairband. Lovin the look

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2 Responses to “Climate Rush and Newham Flashmob”

  1. Jen says:

    Another day and the Vogons strike again at the heart of Newham Town Hall………………

    The whole meeting was one elaborately staged farce, from the onset when the Chair opened the meeting with threats against ‘anarchic’ tendencies and kept bandying the term ‘democracy’ about like he understood its meaning… some particular (highlights)………………………..

    - the ‘noise consultant’ admitting that the reason they didn’t include any sound level readings from the past 7 years was that their stationary microphones had been recording abnormal levels… because of the rather unfortunate extra sound that is bouncing off new buildings that have been built in that time (wonder how much they are paying him…?)……………………………

    -the airport reps abandoning their case after 10 minutes of being interrupted and heckled (not like they needed to make it anyway– the council had opened with 40 minutes worth of the airport’s case– and apparently guys, the ANSWER to CLIMATE CHANGE is… carbon sequestration… and carbon capture… COMPREHENSIVE then, glad that’s sorted)……………………………..

    …anyway, our sources on the inside have since confirmed that Newham is one of the most corrupt boroughs in the country. Apparently the election of the current Mayor was marred by scandal, and now ‘Robert’ likes to ‘rule by fear’. This is a man who scrapped ALL the community fora because he didn’t like the challenge from a certain man (who coincidentally was one of the other mayoral candidates) and has allegedly made sure that ten million pounds worth of budget that was destined for partnership-led community improvements was diverted into his personal campaign initiatives…………………………………………….

    and all the while the government spends hundreds of thousands of pounds drafting white papers that seek new ways of ‘community empowerment’ and ‘capacity-building’…………………………………………………………..

    LET’S HEAR IT FROM THE PEOPLE THEN

  2. Calvin says:

    Yesterday i trekked across London to Newham town hall in East Ham. We held a rather disorganised flash mob all wearing red STOP AIRPORT EXPANSION t-shirts. After this and a brief photo-opp we headed inside.

    Overall democracy works in a very interesting way. It starts off by getting a free ticket to the event, walking past perhaps 15 police officers and heading for the rubbish bins. Once you are past the rubbish bins you notice that you are in a dank back alley with little light but a small door is open as your way ‘out’ or in fact in-to the public galleries. Once you go through this door its just a matter of trying out the first door you come to, which reassuringly opens, rather un-reasuringly it opens onto breeze blocks. The next door is more successful, this leads you into the gallery where you can look over–but not interact with–the planning session. A sign notes that silence is requested from the galleries, it doesn’t say anything about not filming but the Chair of the meeting does! Isn’t there meant to be something about a free media, or transparency in how democracy works? From the vantage point you can now look down unhindered by use of recording equipment and enjoy acting as a bystander in proceeding–as soon as you finish being insinuated against as an anarchist element that is. It’s quite a heady experience, looking down on these clowns–or more appropriately jesters–if you are ever down at Newham town hall then please to check out the coat of arms which has the colours of a jesters hat!.

    The good bit is when the council spokespeople get started,some nice ideas some hilarious non-secateurs and diversions. A couple of my favourite arguments where, firstly, that air pollution models aren’t accurate but from current modeling a couple of roads looked likely to be impacted in an unacceptable manner. Not good, you would think, however the boroughs already poor air quality comes to the rescue. We are told that since this level of air pollution isn’t anomalous it is nothing to be worried about! However the pice de resistance was a consultant brought in to talk about the carbon management plant the airport where working on. There was talk of the fact city businessmen who mainly use the airport where coming in by tube–so that’s green, the airport operators where doing ISO14001, which i`m sure you all know is a sustainable management code, and at one point i expected him to tell us about the aerating faucets they used to save energy and water. Come on people get real! Flying is the most environmentally destructive thing you can do–unless you own a forest which you can burn down. The oddest bit of this testimony was the talk of fiscal measures and–wait for this–carbon capture and storage! What in gods name does possible government responses to climate change have to do with this hugely polluting plan. He could have just shouted–look over there nothing of interest going on here. It was a joke.

    By this time it was getting late and i had to leave despite no objectors or proponents having spoken. I hear that democracy only got better…

    It was clear what the council position was, and it wasn’t going to be easy to shift as the widely criticised aviation white paper was there to help them, as was the support of London mayor Boris Johnson. So the council position focused the issues narrowly, looked farcical on sustainability, relied to a terrible white paper and advice from the deputy prime ministers office. It is clear that a generally pro-aviation stance exists within government and that local democracy has very little to do with how events proceed.

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