Thursday, September 3, 2009

Cardinal Pell is not happy !

Cardinal Pell, Australia's top Catholic and the man who actively campaigned against his own election as Pope in favor of his close friend, Pope Benedict XV1, has a bone to pick with the country's leading religious art contest, The Blake Prize
He reckons it's " kitsch, anti-religious and sometimes only tenuously connected with spirituality".

Viewers will need to make up their own minds-we reckon Adam Cullen's depiction of  David & Goliath (below) wouldn't look out of place on the living room wall or a church for that matter. Others may disagree. Certainly it would make a good talking point over dinner. Cullen didn't win.

William Blake 1775-1825, regarded as one of Britain's greatest artists-if not the best, was also considered barking mad by his contemporaries and a regular smoker of opium.  William Wordsworth thought he was potty but more interesting than Byron and we tend to agree. We aren't too sure though what Blake would think of the works that garner prizes in his name-or the winner of this years Blake Prize -Angelica Mesiti  with Rapture (silent anthem) a video work and a one minute clip of some kids up close, at a pop concert which looks for all the world like an advert for toothpaste or pimple cream. But what the hell-she picked up $20,000 for something that looks like it was filmed on her mobile phone and good for her.

 The winner of the Blake Poetry Prize was John Watson with his "Four Ways to Approach the Numinous'-
The first couple of lines being ;
Gabrielle d'Estrees and one of her sisters, both naked
are standing in what may be a bath. Lining it sides 
and so on.( you can read more of his work here)

The Shuttle loves Blakes own verse which we feel is very apt for today  : 
                          Prisons are built with stones of Law, Brothels with bricks of Religion.
 Blake saw visions (opium ?) and believed he was being instructed in his art by archangels which makes him an OK bloke in the eyes of the Shuttle. One day he started quoting verse and scriptures-said to his wife "I'll be with you always " and promptly dropped dead at 6pm that afternoon.
## whilst William Blake may have believed he saw angelic figures wandering amongst the haymakers one day, as he described-our favourite Person of the Week is Miyuki Hatoyama, Japan's new first lady and married to the newly elected PM. Miyuki (above) reckons she was abducted by aliens 20 years ago but has yet to confirm if she was anally probed or for that matter, smokes opium. Japanese politics, strange at the best of times just got wackier.