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Archive for March, 2009

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Miss Lotte von Muller

This free exhibition adorning the foyer of the National‘s Lyttelton Theatre derives its name from the German ‘tingel-tangel’, the title given to third rate theatrical variety shows during the heyday of the Weimar.  The prize winning contemporary artist Roxana Halls explores her fascination with the culture of Cabaret over the last century in a series of paintings inspired by her time spent in Berlin and her former studio, the saloon bar of a defunct 1930s London theatre, now a Bingo Hall.

Halls’ paintings are impressive to behold, giving visitors the feeling they are the sole audience in the surreal realm of cabaret entertainers, where nothing is quite what it seems…

Tingle-Tangle, until May 30. Admisssion: Free. National Theatre, South Bank, SE1

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(Photos courtesy of Lionsgate Films)

(Photos courtesy of Lionsgate Films)

Joaquin Phoenix has become something of an enigma. Following his renunciation of acting, along with the sparkly trappings of Hollywood for the more humble profession of lyrical wordsmith, his film fans and music critics are united in hoping he doesn’t give up the day job.

But judging from the current hobo look he sports, his aloof stare and incoherent mumblings (its rapping apparently), immortalised by his infamous appearance on David Letterman earlier this year, it looks as if Two Lovers may well be his swan song.

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With Mothering Sunday upon us, I speak to an artist who has dedicated his latest exhibition his greatest inspiration – click continue below to watch the video.

Upon entering the third floor of Sadler’s Wells Theatre,  I am confronted by a series of defiant women.  It is obvious that they are from different walks of life, but they share a united stance: ‘Us against the world’.  Among them are suffragette Emily Davison and Jamaican nurse Mary Seacole.

Welcome to Mother, an exhibition dedicated to the mother of celebrated British artist and Islington resident Vaughan Grylls. Comprising ten life-size representations of historic female figures who changed the socio-political face of Britain from the late 18th century onwards, the women encapsulate the spirit and character of Grylls’s mother Muriel.  A former political campaigner and women’s rights activist, she died three years ago, aged 92. “She was fearless, and when she looked into the mirror before leaving the house it was like she was getting ready to take on the world”, explains Grylls.  “I wanted the photographs to reflect the same sort of immediacy.”

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