December 15th, 2014

Avengers

beside the seaside

It's supposed to be super hot today, and I'm still cosplaying the Crimson Horror from last week. Well, of course I forgot my sunscreen when off to Sculpture by the Sea. Remembered the hat, but not the sunscreen. No worries, I'll pick some up on the way, right? Nope. None to be had, for love nor money. So, ignoring my sizzling skin (where my 90% redheaded DNA will out) I trooped around the cliffs in bright sunshine.

It was quite nice, despite the difficulties in getting there (the promised public transport was a lie), and while a good two thirds of the show were same old, same old (a frequent complaint I overheard, and not just on the day), and, really, a couple of artists need to try stepping outside their comfort zone. I don't know why, but sculpture seems to be the most samey of the arts, and the one branch of the arts where you don't want samey. Especially in a forum like Sculpture by the Sea. It should be big, loud, silly and surprising because it's a walking picnic, with art. No message, no metaphysics, just something that delights the senses, full of whimsy. Not too big an ask, is it?

There was some cute, like the papier-mâché bugs on the cliff wall, and creepy, like the enormous faceless brass babies climbing up the hill - good use of site. I just loathe artists who don't take into account the site. It's like doing a Tropfest film without the theme item, in other words, pointless and lazy and speaks of trying to shoehorn something they had lying around in the back of the garage into the exhibition with no sense of context. It's Sculpture by the Sea, everyone should know what to expect, and what's expected. I always like the ones that make the fact that they're on the ocean walk as part of the art experience somehow, whether it's reflections, tones or cheesy seaside imagery (cheesy is allowed, what part of seaside picnic with art do some of these serious beret wearers not get?).
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