Thursday, January 29, 2009

Quite an impression

Being a unique snowflake I had the startlingly unique idea to go to the Monet exhibition on Monday, its last day. So I lined up with the other half million unique snowflakes who had had the same idea, then bustled, jostled and fairly pushed my way in through the doors when they opened at 9am.

There was so much to love about the exhibition: the paintings of Monet's predecessors, the influence of Japanese art, the sheer beauty of Monet's own works. But what I enjoyed the most was my fellow exhibition viewers. Allow me to share some of their insights:

1. Chappy to his friend: "It's funny how the effect changes when you move back." Yes, dear chappy, you're quite right and are thus granted the award for the Most Insightful Comment on Impressionist Painting Ever. Your prize is the Impressionist picture above, provided you can step far enough back to tell me what it is.

2. Earnest husband to earnest wife: "Hm, that one, the Priory at Vauville, where's Vauville?"
Earnest wife to earnest husband: "I don't know. Maybe you could look it up when you get home. It could be your project for the afternoon. You could get your map out."

Two things: 'project' for the afternoon? Was she a) pulling the piss, or b) um, pulling the piss?

Secondly, 'get' his map out? While he's 'getting his map out' and looking for random French towns we'll all be doing quick searches on the interwebs. While he's still looking ("Is it in the Loire Valley? Somewhere near Reims?") we will have made cups of tea, had naps, woken up, made hearty casseroles, eaten them, watched tv, finished a few sudoku, brushed our teeth and gone to bed. Then around the time we wake up the next morning he'll be saying "ah-ha! Normandy! It's in Normandy!" Yes yes, jolly good.

3. And finally, someone who possibly hadn't had enough sleep (or been to sleep at all?) to a guard: "Is this the last day of the exhibition? Right, so it's closing today?"

Yes, it's both of those things.

Monet: marvellous entertainment.


Anonymous said...

Hmmm. Ah Chappy, I think that impressionist picture is out of 'The Hungry Caterpillar'...

CC said...

At least they were THERE!! I do approve of bringing art to the masses. Some tiny skerrick of awareness and appreciation may seep in, so when you encounter them at the NEXT exhibition they might even have learned to SHUT UP!

squib said...

haha anon! I reckon it's 'Water Garden and Japanese Footbridge'

Is there a prize Kettle?

Kettle said...

Anon! A fine answer, and much funnier than the actual answer.

Ooh, a prize, squib! There are two:

A virtual tour of some awesome art here:

Or a beaker of something green from Spock here:

And CC! Something tells me you're an artist ;)

Laura Jayne said...

Things I have learned today...

Snowflakes don't melt when jostled at 9 a.m.

Vauville is not a town in central California where they grow artichokes.

Pulling the piss doesn't mean what I thought (naughty girl me).

Kettle said...

Hi LJ! It's a strange but true scientific fact that snowflakes, when amassed outside galleries waiting for the doors to open at 9am, do indeed jostle and do not, indeed, melt. Forget all the science you learnt at school.

There appears to be a Vauville in both California and France - something I've learned today!

As for the last matter - well! Who can imagine what you thought ;)

Anonymous said...

Nothing wrong with getting the big atlas down from the tall deep bookshelf, laying it out on a table or one's lap and diving in for a long peruse. Who knows what interesting facts you might dig up while searching for Vauville?

Kettle said...

Very true, Anon No. 2, and in fact the path to my dictionary shelf is well-worn despite the existence of all manner of online dictionaries.

Perhaps it is simply a matter of the order in which you like to explore? With atlases I'm happier to start with X-marks-the-spot according to the internet, then work out from the spot with a nice, big, papery atlas (nice description of your bookshelf, by the way), however I am but one kettle in the six-plus billion who inhabit the earth so perhaps there are six billion different ways of approaching this.

Perhaps what really irked me was that this chappy had a whole afternoon free to study his atlas... lucky bastard.