STUCKISM NEWS 2000
He's got a bee in his bonnet about Stuckism and lets us all know about it. Steve Spence put on poetry readings in the eighties in Swindon and booked the Medway Poets (since evolved into The Stuckists). We obviously did something to upset him. And he can't handle paradox. Read it here.
CHILDISH AND THOMSON CRITIQUE HIRST
Life and Death and Damien Hirst is an hour-long fly on the wall documentary following Hirst preparing for his show at the Gagosian gallery in New York. The exhibition opened in September at Gagosian's new space in Chelsea and closed in mid-December. The show was a sell-out. The transmission date is Thursday 28 December at 23.05
Programme support at C4 has compiled a website to support this programme. Billy Childish and Charles Thomson have written A Stuckist Critique of Damien Hirst for it. www.channel4.com/culture/microsites/H/hirst/against.html
BILLY CHILDISH NAMED ALTERNATIVE ARTIST OF THE YEAR ON AMAZON
of the Year for 2000 goes to the uncompromising genius of "Wild" Billy
Childish, who released Elementary--the
swan song of his legendary lo-fi punk-blues-garage-R&B band, Thee
Headcoats. ChildishÕs unflagging decades of service in the punk
rock garage earns him Amazon.comÕs Alternative, Indie & Punk Artist
of the Year." -- Tod Nelson
FIRST STUCKIST GROUP IN GERMANY
Stuckism continues to fulfill its promise of internationalism and regionalism with the first group in Germany, "The Lewenhagener Stuckists", in Loewenhagen,founded by Mary Lewenhagener and Tim Nathan Joel.
Like all our sister groups this one is independently motivated and self-determined, inspired by the founding Stuckist group. We exercise no control over other groups, but accept their right to be and welcome our contact with them.
They write:" The studio, Lewenhagener Auge, is set up and constantly productive.We would like to be able to hear from other like minded artists. The studio is, afterall, here to be used. So if there are other Stuckists roaming around Germany who are looking for space to paint, paint, paint. Then we recommend they contact us.
Mary and I began producing works together at the start of September, we are having our first exhibition from December the 15th onwards into the early part of 2001. Mary has already organised an exhibition here which took place in the Summer of 2000."
1 December 2000
STUCKIST DALEK EXTERMINATES SEROTA
Check out this one then. A web variant of world-renowned German paper `Der Spiegel' has an article on the Tate Turner Prize Show titled "Zerstoren...zerstoren... zerstoren..." which roughly translates, we believe, as "Destroy...destroy...destroy...". It resulted from a visit of the journalist, Gunnar Luetzow, to the Stuckist `Real Turner Prize Show 2000' in London. A leading Stuckist (who shall remain nameless) was being interviewed and apparently broke into a spontaneous imitation of a Dalek (a legendary TV Sci-fi robot) with the chilling prediction "Sir Nicholas Serota wird vaporisiert". When recently questioned about this peculiar behaviour, the individual in question began muttering about stress and pressure and was last seen lurching towards Old Street tube intoning "we will conquer the world".
STUCKIST CLOWN DEMO SUCCESS AT TATE BRITAIN
This event received so much news coverage we can't write it all up yet. Coverage included:
THE ARTS CLUB ATTACKS THE TATE GALLERY
David Morris, Chairman of The Arts Club, Dover Street, launches a full-scale attack on the Tate and the Royal Academy in today's Evening Standard.
He blames both for succumbing to "the advertising and public relations industry". He became aware of this when the RA's exhibition of 20th century art "concluded with Mr Saatchi's collection".
Both Tate director, Sir Nicholas Serota, and RA President Phillip King are ex-officio members of The Arts Club, which was founded in 1863 by Charles Dickens amongst others and patronised by numerous luminaries, including Swinburne, Rossetti, Whistler, Monet and Rodin.
It is a regular rendezvous for Stuckists - co-founder Charles Thomson and gallerist Joe Crompton are both members. It has also hosted a Stuckist exhibition and talk. The newly-issued winter Arts Club Journal was the launch-pad for David Morris's attack in the Chairman's Foreword. The Journal also contains an article on Stuckism.
related link: The Arts Club(28 Feb 2000)
3 November 2000:
The highly-respected and worldwide journal 'The Economist' acknowledges the participation of the Stuckist movment in the current British art scene (p26, 28 Oct 2000), in particular its attitude of 'derision' towards the Turner Prize.
We are pleased to announce that native Croat speakers can now read about Stuckism in their own language. If you are learning Croat, then this will be useful practice. For an instant connection, click here.
RACHEL JORDAN STRIKES BACK
In a letter to the Evening Standard, Rachel Jordan writes: 'From Hettie Judah's article (Never mind the wit, find the quality, 26 Oct) about the current Stuckist painting exhibition The Real Turner Prize Show, it seems that when a work of art is a painting, the old standards of judgement are still applied - she calls some of the work "formally inept".
This seems unfair on painting and painters. I have never heard such phrases used against any "conceptual" work. Indeed, there is a distinct lack of criteria for assessing Brit Art, with galleries such as the Tate produce exhibition leaflets with lengthy descriptions rather than aesthetic judgements. As far as I know, the criteria used for judging the Turner Prize have never been made public - surely we should be told how the finalists are picked and why the winner wins. In fact, the article's title "Never mind the wit, find the quality" is a most useful statement to be used against any Turner Prize work. Where was the "quality" of Emin's bed, or of Tomoko Takahashi's rubbish?
Rachel Jordan, Guest Artist, The Real Turner Prize Show Langthorne Road E11 4HR
And above the letter, they reprinted Charles Thomson's painting of Sir Nicholas Serota with the caption "Modern art - is it all just a load of pants?"'
26 October 2000:
CHILDISH AND THOMSON THROWN OUT OF TATE GALLERY
As reported in the Evening Standard, Thomson and Childish were asked to leave the Channel 4 party at Tate Britain after they were found distributing Stuckist manifestos. They had previously been handing out the same leaflets at an opening at the National Portrait Gallery, where many people were saying "we agree with you."
See report and pictures here.
26 October 2000:
Hettie Judah in The Evening Standard slags off the Real Turner Prize Show. Read it here.
25 October 2000:
ERRATUM: ELLA GURU AND A YOUNG TRANSVESTITE ASPIRING TO BE DIVINE ARE NOT ONE AND THE SAME PERSON
The photograph that appeared in the printed version of the Guardian was captioned "Ella Guru with self portrait" in error. Although the background of the picture was based on Miss Guru's handbag, the figure she has portrayed is a youngster who goes by the name of Fanny, one of the colourful performers in Mathew Glammore's latest freakshow.
Read the online article here.
25 October 2000:
STUCKISTS EMERGE VICTORIOUS AFTER FILLING JOURNALISTS WITH CHAMPAGNE AND CHOCOLATE TARTS
But please folks, is there any other way to get them to see the superior work going on right here here in The Pure Gallery? Art or Arse - you be the judge.
The Real Turner Prize Show 2000, within 2 days of opening attracted 3 Evening Standard articles, Newsroom Southeast, BBC News 24 hourly, live from Gallery on London Live, mentioned in Times report on Turner prize (quote from Crompton), Interview with Joe Crompton on radio 4 (8:40 am 25 October) and the Guardian, which contained the following quote:
Read the entire article here.
The recently formed Melbourne Stuckists stage their first-ever show, which is a sister show of the London Stuckist's alternative to Tate Britain's pathetic attempt at art. They may be down under (or we may be from their point of view) but they're not slow off the mark.
THE MELBOURNE STUCKISTS
The first Stuckist group in Australia (in fact for that matter the first Stuckist group outside the UK) has just been formed.
The Melbourne Stuckists consist of Regan Tamanui, Justin Grub, Ben Blanchette, Malcome Mmackie and Dave Freeman Rose.
Their first exhibition is planned for the 23 October in Regan's back yard (Australian for Gallery). Details to follow.
Start your own Stuckist group now! Express yourself (I think Madonna said that) in primeval pigment (she didn't say that though). Let us know: firstname.lastname@example.org
16 October 2000:
SEND IN THE CLOWNS FOR TURNER was the lead story in The Evening Standard, Londoner's Diary, on Monday 16 October (and surprisingly survived throughout all five editions). It starts:
Charles Thomson, Stuckist Co-founder, is quoted that Turner did not pickle sheep and:
The item finishes with a report on the Tate's official dress code, namely that gorilla suits and clowns costumes are quite acceptable, although nudity and underwear are not (unless presumably they are part of an art work).
16 October 2000:
Billy Childish (Stuckist Co-founder) was phoned by South East Arts for feedback on their services, as he is apparently on their list of disabled people - which came as some surprise to him. Nevertheless, willing chap that he is, he proffered some observations.
One of these was that some so-called 'artists' were in fact professional appliers for grants from Arts organisations and their real art form was literally that - filling in art forms. These people (and a local one was named) tend to do 'art' that very few people apart from the 'artist' are interested in (and even that seems frequently doubtful).
This, however, did not seem the sort of feedback that South-East Arts had in mind, so, ever- willing, Mr Childish tried another tack, suggesting that he knew a disabled (that is dyslexic) artist who would benefit from a grant but who was unable to apply for one because of his disability. Could South East Arts perhaps provide assistance for this deserving artist to fill in the forms? It seems that this too was the wrong kind of feedback, and that South East Arts was not willing to provide assistance of this nature, although they did offer to provide forms in big size type.
South East Arts seemed happier to deal with the issue of venues. Childish suggested that a lot of Medway musicians were hampered by lack of venues, due to fire regulations restricting the number of permissable performers in local bars (to, for example, a duo with a drum machine).
If, Childish continued enthusiastically, South East Arts were to provide a grant for music venue pubs to meet recent more stringent fire regulations, then full bands would be able to play and the Medway music scene would be rejuvenated.
The South East Arts representative then commented that this might well be the case, but it would not be possible to carry out such a scheme, because although it would result in improved venues, South East Arts would have no control over the type of musicians that then played in the venues.
Some might think that to be the greatest advantage of such a scheme in the first place.
16 October 2000:
Yes, a vicious and overwhelming attack on Stuckism, its concepts, its paintings and its favourite ice cream flavour (well, perhaps not the ice cream flavour) has been launched at great length on the most obscure web site in the world www.tangents.co.uk/tangent/main/stuck.html by the most unheard-of critic in the world with one of the most unbelievable nom-de-plumes in the world, namely Alistair Fitchett - an obvious anachronism for Sir (sorry, Mr) Nicholas Serota.
We can't possibly sum up the depth and complexity of Alistair's (read Nicholas's) attack, and anyway most of it was continued on page 94, but if ever hubris met nemesis then this was it. But to sum it up, it was that some cruddy American (OK OK tautology) artist who exhibited light fittings was the equal of Shakespeare, Tolstoy and Buddha all rolled into one.
Stuckist co-founder Charles Thomson rose to the bait as usual and attempted a swingeing response, but didn't stand a bloody chance, let me tell you. You can see his failed attempt on www.tangents.co.uk/tangents/main/stuckist2.htm
Next time we will be more careful whom we take on in intellectual debate.
19 September 2000:
One of the founder members of The Stuckists, Eamon Everall, has recently received an £18,000 commission from a London Council to provide them with a Millennium sculpture.
Initially, three proposals were selected from among many others and the successful artists commissioned to construct Marquettes & drawings . These then toured the area as a part of a public consultation exhibition, Everalls sculpture, which will stand 3.5 metres high and weighs in at 5 tons, was chosen as a result.
The cost of materials & installation have, according to the artist, risen so much during the lengthy selection process, that he'll be lucky to afford his bus fare home! But never mind, Eamon hopes that this prestigious commission will lead to ( more profitable) others.
The sculptural piece will be installed in mid November & promises to be a controversial addition to the localities stock of public artwork. More details as they come.
The Brotherhood of Ruralists, the group founded the mid-seventies to explore deeper roots (excuse pun) of art and culture, stage a major show this month.
Venue: The Gallery, Barley Splatt, Panters Bridge, Mount, Bodmin, Cornwall. Info: Emily at Academy Arts 020 7419 2052. 30 Sept - 20 Oct.
Exhibitors: Ann Arnold, Graham Arnold, Peter Blake, Annie Ovenden, Graham Ovenden.
27 August 2000:
Nigel Dempster in The Mail on Sunday (27.8.00) reports that this year's Turner Prize ceremonh should be `thrilling' as the Stuckists are threatening to take action:
`One plan is to throw paint bombs at Tate Director Sir Nicholas Serota. But Stuckist leader Charles Thomson says:"I am against the bombs - it would be a waste of good paint."'
Perhaps mattresses could be used instead.
18 July 2000:
Fans of Art Review magazine have noticed by now the replacement of David Lee as editor by Charlotte Mullins (formerly of Tate and Independent on Sunday).
David Lee was outstanding as the only editor of an art magazine prepared to stand up against the current conceptual/Britart establishment. Sales were increasing by 15% a year, so why is he no longer there?
Simple - the magazine was bought by a friend of Charles Saatchi, and David Lee is not known as a man to compromise.
The initial impression of the new Art Review is not encouraging. The first section to go was the fabulous ARTBOLLOCKS, which was jam-packed with pretentious, ludicrous and meaningless quotes from art catalogues and reviews. Saatchi artists are already insidiously making their entrance onto the pages. It looks highly unlikely that Gary Hume will ever again be dismissed as 'crap' in its pages (see previous News item).
However, you can't keep a good man down. And you can't keep David Lee down either. He is now editing a new publication THE JACKDAW. If you value free speech and want to know the truth about dealings of the art world (see Spectator article on our essays page), then SUBSCRIBE NOW. The first monthly issue is out on 23 August.
Send £25 cheque for ten issues to The Jackdaw, 88 Leswin Road, London N16 7ND. Email: email@example.com
18 July 2000:
Brighton-based Blue Minkies publishing was inspired by the Medway Poets (now the Stuckists) pamphlets of the early eighties.
This pamphlet, 'Cheap Trash Manifestos', contains the Minkies, Miss Frock, The Booists ("Nobody should be prepared to die for Boo!") and the Stuckists.
An original approach to the Stuckist manifesto, which we recommend, is merely printing the favourite bits, in this case points 1, 2, 4, 5, 10, 14, 16 and 20.
We also learn that Billy Childish, when asked if the Medway Poets were still mates, replied "I have just become friends with one of them for the first time".
Other Minky publications include 'Beer Stained Cheap Trash Poetry for Your Bus Ride Home'. Send £1.50 and A5 sae to Blue Minkie Publishing, 46 Beaconsfield Villas, Brighton, East Sussex BN1 6HD.
Web site: www.blueminkies.fsnet.co.uk
13 July 2000:
An intrepid bunch of Stuckist supporters in deepest Devon have now officially started the Dartington Stuckist group.
Its origin is Dartington College. Members are Andrew Edwards, Jason Pinhunt, Keith Cook, Liz Hyde, Celebrity Ham.
An exhibition is being planned for Autumn.
It should be noted that this is a completely independent group, founded to support the main aims of Stuckism (see Manifesto) but doesn't mean they agree with everything, we hope
07 July 2000:
The South West Academy of Fine and Applied Arts was founded on 1 January 2000 to break down 'the artificial divisions that have arisen in the twentieth century between painting and sculpture and the major applied arts'. The latter include ceramics, glass, furniture, metalwork and textiles.
The first Open Exhibition takes place 15 July - 31 August 2000 (Mon-Sat 10am-6pm) at Exeter Phoenix, Bradninch Place, Gandy Street, Exeter. Tel:01392 667081. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org uk
Founders include Graham Ovenden (of the Brotherhood of Ruralists). The exhibition will be opened by Peter Blake.
05 July 2000:
The current (July 2000) issue of 'Dazed and Confused' magazine contains a two-page Stuckist manifesto on writing (pages 146-7).
It is headlined: THE STUCKISTS ARE THE ONLY GROUP OF CONTEMPORARY PAINTERS AND WRITERS IN THE COUNTRY TO HAVE ACHIEVED A NATIONAL PROFILE WITHOUT THE BACKING OF INSTITUTIONS, WEALTHY PRIVATE PATRONAGE AND THE SYCOPHANCY OF GUTLESS CRITICS, NOT ONE OF WHOM HAS EVEN HAD THE PRESCIENCE TO ACKNOWLEDGE THE EXISTENCE OF THE STUCKISTS.
The feature was previewed in the Evening Standard Londoner's Diary (16.6.00),which quoted the following from the manifesto:
"Martin Amis, Will Self, Irvine Welsh and Ian McEwan... are the epitome of contemporary turgidity. Their writing is painfully over-aware of itself and their style artificial and insulting to even average intelligence, and their language false... they suffer from puffed up preening self regard and.. describe intimacy in the style of a 12-year-old public schoolboy's fetid and gauche imagination... we advise people not to read them."
3 July 2000:
The New Statesman (3.7.00) contains a two-page feature (pages 44-45) by Graham Bendel on how much Tracey Emin's work has been influenced by her ex-boyfriend [Billy Childish].
The article was based on information presented by Charles Thomson in his talk on the same subject at the Salon des Arts, Kensington (25.5.00).
This was also mentioned in the Evening Standard Londoner's Diary (25.5.00) where Emin's 'Exploration of the Soul' was linked with Childish's earlier 'Analysis of the Soul Rancid'.
Read the entire article by searching under 'Childish' on the New Statesman website.
16 June 2000:
Stuckism gets a good mention for the forthcoming talk by dynamic duo (or terrible twins - Ed) Thomson and Childish at Salon des Arts. Buy it to see Thomson's best yet Serota look-alike expression (in the days before Serota made a big effort to start smiling - Stuckist spin doctors haven't cracked that one yet, obviously).
The photographer was Cristina Pedrazzini.
(Webmistress' comment: I would not call Childish and Thomson "terrible twins" either. You couldn't meet two men more opposite. Which makes them a great lecture team. This event is well worth seeing, folks. The talk will be on 20 June. Details here. )
25 May 2000:
Despite Ella Guru's disapproval Charles Thomson bravely went ahead with his plans to deliver the above-titled talk at the Salon des Arts today.
The Evening Standard ran a piece on it in the Londoner's Diary which quoted Billy Childish on Tracey Emin:
"She's been copying my work since we first met in 1981. It winds me up because people who don't know me often think I've copied her."
Emin, according the report, "doesn't want to talk about this" - which is not exactly denying that it's true, is it?
Charles Thomson was bizzarely dubbed a member of The Medway Poets, who would obviously have been due for yet another reunion, had they not been reborn already as The Stuckist Poets with a reading last Saturday at the Folkestone Metropole Arts Centre. reading.
To book the talk email email@example.com
THE STUCKIST POETS
Just for the record they are: Philip Absolon, Billy Childish, Wolf Howard, Bill Lewis, Joe Machine, Sexton Ming and Charles Thomson. Do these people's talents know no bounds?
That just about sums it up. Jane Kelly, current guest exhibitor at the Stuckist show, has a painting (no. 828 as it happens) in the Royal Academy Summer Show. It depicts Ken Livingstone (prior to his election as Mayor of London) arraigned before a Nazi 'people's court', which is something to do with the esteemed Prime Minister, Tony Blair, banging on about people's choice and then trying to make all the decisions himself, particularly in the case of who should be the London Mayor of course, or more precisely who shouldn't be. Jane normally paints pictures of dead cats.
Young Billy Childish (well not so young now actually) was interviewed in Butterfly magazine (December 99) and spoke about art and Stuckism amongst other things (an ex-girlfriend was mentioned). The interview has now appeared in full on Master Childish's official web site (well done, Pat). Read it here.
Billy Childish is one of the exhibitors at the British Art Show 5 - organised by the Hayward Gallery on behalf of the Arts Council - showing those who have "made a significant artistic contribution" in the five years prior to April 2000.
The handsome catalogue (on sale in your local quality bookshop) cites his activities as co-founding Stuckism, the anti-conceptual art group, and the show `The Resignation of Sir Nicholas Serota'.
It is, curiously one might think for an art show, not Mr Childish's paintings that are on display, but blow-ups of some of his poems, which he, not unreasonably in our opinion, considers to be poetry rather than art. But, hey, let's not nitpick over details.
The Show is in Edinburgh till 4 June, and Southampton from 23 June. It later moves to Cardiff and Birmingham.
14 May 2000:
GO SEE... THE STUCKISTS
"...As the founding group of a self-named art movement called Remodernism, [The Stuckists] stand on an art ticket that's against clever conceptualism and in favour of a more emotional and spiritual integrity in art via figurative painting..." writes Helen Sumpter.
Read more here.
23 April 2000:
CHILDISH CARPETED BY CULTUREWARS
Aidan Campbell of art web site Culturewars seems somewhat bewildered but nevertheless disapproving of the Stuckist show `The Resignation of Sir Nicholas Serota' (he did at least bother to go and see it - Aidan that is, not Sir Nicholas).
However he reserves his full venom for Billy Childish's `truculent acts of revenge' against his (Billy that is, not Aidan) former girlfriend (Tracey that is, not Sanchia) Emin.
The trouble is, that, in common with the rest of the media, Aidan whops Mr Childish for all this vengeful activity, when in fact he (Billy, not Aidan) didn't actually do it in the first place.
Culturewars kindly append a letter to the review from Charles Thomson, who confesses it was actually him (Charles, not Billy, nor Aidan for that matter) all along. Exactly why he should wish to commit such vengeful truculence against someone else's former girlfriend (if that indeed is how it is still going to be interpreted) remains yet to be explained.
Mutual friends (of everyone so far mentioned just to simplify matters) intimate that Thomson is actually more likely to want to commit such acts against Childish than Emin. Aren't people complicated?
It is of course highly unlikely that it will stop Childish continuing to get the blame - such is the nature of British justice.
[Nice one, Chuck. Everyone, you must go read this. I'll even keep to myself my own theory on why Charles has it in for Miss Emin. - Ella Guru, webmistress]
18 April 2000:
STUCKISTS CONTINUE TO POINT OUT WHERE THE EMPEROR HAS NO CLOTHES
"The Resignation of Sir Nicholas Serota addresses important, and maybe burning, issues about modern art... the Stuckists... have made it their mission to return modern art to its rightful place in a spiritual and philosophical tradition.
"Angered by the banal and cynical materialism of the YBA (Young British Artists) such as Damien Hirst and Tracey Emin, the Stuckists have called for a return to real concepts instead of empty conceptualism, to real craftsmanship instead of rumpled beds or pickled sharks. And, as an indication of how mainstream the YBA have now become, the Stuckists regard themselves as the outsiders, the mavericks...
"Joe Crompton, musician and owner of Gallery 108, told me he feels `passionately' about wanting art to return to its roots in painting...
"...they are not voices crying in the wilderness...
"If the Stuckists continue to point out where the emperor has no clothes, the arts establishment may be able to duck this issue no longer."
Click here for full text.
23 March 2000:
STUCKIST SEXTON MING APPEARS ON THE DIVINE DAVID SHOW
Channel 4, Divine David, around 1.50am on Thursday 23 March.
Although this was a re-run of last year's programme, many more people caught the Ming in action and were won over by his wit and charm (and leg).
To quote Stuckist co-founder Charles Thomson,
"Sexton (+Steady) were on Divine David a few nights ago. I caught the end of it. Sexton was wearing a black pvc dress (filthy pervert) and someone (Steady?) playing keyboard had their bum showing (dirty degenerate)."
23 March 2000:
BBC TV NEWS - STUCKISM ON TATE BRITAIN
BBC TV Breakfast News (23.3.00) featured Stuckist Charles Thomson commenting on the opening of Tate Britain.
Tate Britain is the old Tate Gallery which is now going to be just British art (including Brit Art). The new Bankside Gallery is going to be Tate Modern for international modern art (including Brit Art).
Tate Britain will retain the Turner Prize you will be pleased to hear.
On BBC News Stephen Deuchar, Director of Tate Britain, stated: " If you want a comprehensive overview of art made in Britain or art made about Britain, Tate Britain is the place. We have almost limitless capacity in the years ahead to explore British art."
Rosie Millard, BBC Arts Correspondent, continued: "However, there are others in the art world who consider that rather than promote British art, the Tate has actually damaged it.
"Charles Thomson is a member of the Stuckists, an art movement campaigning for the return of traditional values in painting, which he feels the Tate no longer supports."
A shot of the current Stuckist show (The Resignation of Sir Nicholas Serota) at Gallery 108, was followed by a close-up of Wolf Howard's painting 'Death by Firing Squad' and Charles Thomson in front of his painting of Sir Nicholas Serota.
Charles Thomson said, "I think people are fed up with the Tate Gallery. Furthermore a lot of people are duped by the Tate Gallery because they respect it and its name and its inheritance with the Turners. They go along and expect to see art. Then they see something they can't understand like a dirty bed and they think they're missing something. The other day someone said to me, 'it must be art because it's in the Tate - I must be missing something.' I said, 'You're not missing anything. You think it's rubbish because it is rubbish.'"
Charles Thomson quoted on the BBC site 23.3.00.
11 March 2000:
Is this real art or is it just pants?
The Daily Telegraph
"All wars beget great art, and this one is no exception. The good likeness...[click on picture to enlarge]...is a cheeky portrait of the mighty Sir Nicholas Serota, director of the ever-growing Tate Gallery and friend of Government...It appears as the centre piece of an exhibition in London this week called The Resignation of Sir Nicholas Serota.
"I do not think that likely. But the exhibition organisers, an art movement called the Stuckists, desire it greatly...
"The movement now campaigns for a sort of return to traditional values and against conceptual art and the cosy Turner Prize world. Sir Nicholas sits at the pinnacle of both.
"one senior Tate staff member thinks it's a very funny painting and may buy it."
09 March 2000:
"Anti Britart Exhibition Launched"
They've obviosly got their misinformation from several recent news articles (see the Times below). (I'm sure even Tracey herself is dying to see this piece of art she made about painters who are "stuck! stuck! stuck!").
For the whole story go to http://www.britart.com/featuresnews4.htm
09 March 2000:
Call for Tate boss to resign
Hendon and Finchley Times
"A Finchley led group of artists has controversially demanded the resignation of the director of the Tate Gallery...The Stuckists hold Sir Nicholas responsible for any art that is more about slick marketing than talent..."
Charles Thomson says that Sir Nicholas Serota has "failed to capture the hearts of the nation with his policies. His art has alienated people."
"There is no point in having space for modern art if all we're going to see is more dead horses hanging from higher ceilings."
07 March 2000:
Serota in semi-tumescence
"Ken Livingstone has more than New Labour on his case. He is the next target for writer/artist Jane Kelly, whose latest painting goes on display tonight in the trendy Gallery 108 in London. Worryingly for Ken, it is of a naked Sir Nicholas Serota and depicts the Tate Gallery director in a state of what Miss Kelly describes as "semi-tumescence," although Brutus just assured that Miss Kelly used a model and that the distinguished man did not pose..."Meanwhile you can buy Serota for just £500. It's a snip.'..."
06 March 2000:
At the Stuckists' latest exhibition called The Resignation of Sir Nicholas Serota (at Gallery 108, Leonard Street), "...The Highlight of the show is a painting by Charles Thomson entitled Sir Nicholas Serota Makes An Acquisitions Decision.
"It shows Serota standing in front of a large pair of red underpants hanging from a clothes line and asking 'Is it a genuine Emin (£10,000) or a worthless fake?'"
04 March 2000:
Call for Tate boss to quit
"A group of artists who a return to traditional skills have written an open letter to Sir Nicholas Serota, attacking his directorship of the Tate Gallery.
"Charles Thomson, of the Stuckists, said, 'We want him to step down.' The group is angry at exhibits such as Tracey Emin's my Bed and any art involving dead animals..."
the article goes on to incorrectly state that the groups name comes from a work by Emin "which criticised artists who are 'sruck stuck stuck in painting.'"
20 January 2000:
THE RESIGNATION OF SIR NICHOLAS SEROTA
'There's a whole body of people at the Tate who are in the pockets of the Americans'. This was a quote in the Sunday Times (5 Dec 99) from Brian Pilkington who had just resigned as a Tate Patron in objection to the Abracadabra exhibition - hardly surprising as its focal points were a dead horse hanging from the ceiling and a table football game.
It seems there is a bit of reluctance from British sponsors to cough up dosh for the new Bankside Tate, which will provide a vastly increased exhibition space for, presumably, more dead horses from higher ceilings and extra table football games, even, one may conjecture, a branch of Dreamland for second hand beds and an M&S returns counter for used underwear.
Why Mr Pilkington should not want to donate funds from the glass company's foundation to such worthy ends is beyond us.
Various American patrons of obviously greater discernment are making donations and will be named on plaques in the gallery.
The Daily Telegraph (20 January) takes up the tale:
"The Tate Gallery's much-maligned director, Sir Nicholas Serota, is off on a trip to America, in the hopes of raising funds to meet the £25 million shortfall in the budget for the new Bankside Gallery.
"He should be back just in time for a fact-finding visit to the sensationally fashionable Gallery 108's forthcoming exhibition of 'Stuckism'. The exhibition is entitled: 'The Resignation of Sir Nicholas Serota'."