Thursday, 30 June 2011

Mangrove, Arcade Fire, Kings of Leon in Hyde Park.

The 'Mangrove' Steel band is off to Hyde Park to play on the bill with Arcade Fire and Kings of Leon.

keeping cool on Portobello Road.

Chris Malcolm has been in the area for ever. His new business 'Founded & co' has not. It is at 253 Portobello Road and is cool. Clothes, accessories, shoes, music, art, literature... You know all the essential stuff. Check it out. More HERE There is a sale on at the moment too!

Wednesday, 29 June 2011

The Countess Alex Zapak. I told you she was a star.

 Performance Artist, singer, theatrical storyteller, fairytail punk and Fantastic woman has just won the TFL Art below prize for June.  Her image is plastered on every tube station in London for a month. check it out and remember her name.

well done alex. You are a star.

Tuesday, 28 June 2011

Sexual assault by Portobello Road gallery owner.

A sad tale of a Notting Hill art gallery owner sexually assaulting an artist in public has come my way.

There were witnesses to the assault which took place a couple of days ago. I shall be writing much more on this matter.

I have asked the Guy in question if he would like to put his side across... He ain't answered yet.

What this is doing however is drawing out of the woodwork, on facebook, the kind of guy who says: "The place for this is the courts, not facebook". Perpetrators of this kind of assault on women love the courts, it is another opportunity to further humiliate their victims. When the courts address the balance and start recognising victims as victims and stop allowing public humiliations at the hands of sociopaths will be the time to use their system.

It is a man's world.

Thursday, 23 June 2011

Countess Alex Zapak

Performance artist Countess alex Zapak is putting on a free show at the Tabernacle tonight.

Elvis spotted in Powis Square, Notting Hill.

Elvis is alive and well. I spotted him in Powis Square yesterday going into the house that was used as the location in 'Performance' the cult 70's movie starring Mick Jagger and Anita Ekberg. Sorry about the picture quality but I had to move fast.

Suspiciously Elvis is performing at the Tabernacle on July 8th. should be fun.

Tuesday, 21 June 2011

The girl with the horse in her hair.

Performance Artist and storyteller The Countess Alex Zapak brings her fairytail Punk to the Tabernacle on Thursday evening. She is probably as mad as a box of frogs but interesting. I have not seen her show, I have however seen videos and talked to Alex and am looking forward to this.

Notting Hill could do with an injection of Avante Garde, Dadaist creativity.

It is a free event. The fb page is here:!/event.php?eid=220585207963199

Thursday, 16 June 2011

The best smelling shop in West London.

Local chef Mark Richardson impersonating Travis Bickle at the spice shop in Blenheim Crescent W11.


Icon Tact. Bob West.

Bob writes:
It's constructed from a series of hand made faux messiahs in plaster around the edges.  An actual external solid wood frame,  The main image is on a separate board, canvas covered and slightly uplifted to sit proud of the framing device.  The main panel is a montage of bits.    There is a small upturned, hand painted postal box for jewellery in the bottom left-hand corner beside the central face; a fake looking relic on the other side made from nails and bits of gnarled leather and at the top right-hand side, obscuring the crown a little, is another applied 'thing' figure with a tin insert.   The central figure is surrounded by what are to me rather archetypical characters making hand gestures that crop up a lot in my work.   The worn down nature of the thing is a key element; lots of scratched surfaces and purposeful ageing - care worn and enticed.  The main figure has brass  'eyebrows' from an old gas mantle.  It's mostly painted in acrylic with household emulsion - although I am tempted to say 'household emotion' which has a better ring to its echoing tones.

Is it my imagination or is the figure at bottom left holding a severed head.What's that all about then?

Kate Bush - Rocket man.

Wednesday, 15 June 2011

How to identify a fairytail punk.

How do you identify a fairytail punk? You look at her boots of course.

There will be much more on this subject at a later date.

Who is the Fairytail punk?
This is the Fairytail punk.

more later.

Tuesday, 14 June 2011

Portobello Art Gallery and what's going on at the Westway Development Trust.

Portobello Art Gallery is a 'pop up'  underneath the Westway on Portobello Green (half way between Portobello Road and Ladbroke Grove). It is open until Sunday and although small contains some interesting portraits painted from photograph by Jon Cartwright . It is well worth a look if you are in the neighbourhood.

Brick Heads,

Currently on show in the Tabernacle W11 gallery space.

Notting Hill Views.

Ladbroke Grove.

Portobello road 

The Cow. Westbourne Park Road.

Monday, 13 June 2011

Pigeon post.

this is a very early rough draft. Just notes really.

A song for last year's wife.

This spring
a pigeon scratched a rough nest
on the ledge outside the kitchen window
The ledge where you grew parsley and mint
and the scarlet geranium you nurtured from a cutting
taken on a drunken walk home
from outside the neighbours house.

The pots have gone
the herbs long dead
the geranium fell to the basement last winter

leaving space for the rough nest
in which a pigeon laid a solitary egg
It was not a good nest
I scolded the bird for such slapdash househusbandry
but we watched over that egg
as I fed her seeds and crumbs
and fretted with her.

On the third day
a jackdaw took the egg
there was nothing I nor the pigeon could do
a jackdaw took the egg
save make accusative stares
a jackdaw took the egg

I did not take the egg and I could not save the egg
she did not take the egg and could not save the egg.

but I think we equally cared for that egg
until we decided to blame each other for it's loss.

I have not seen the pigeon since and I have let the pigeon go
but the egg still haunts me.

Saturday, 11 June 2011

Kittens in nature. This blog hurts.

I am well known for my lack of enthusiasm for anything remotely kittenish.

The following arrived via twitter from Philippa Perry:

Kittens in nature
On a spring day
Come through on twitter
and ruin my day.

He finds a reason
As soon as he can
To hate little kitty
Although he's aman.

kitty must bear
The brunt of his blame
All of his misery
And much of his shame.

Thank you Philippa.

Pepe Francis MBE.

Congratulations to Pepe on the award of his gong for services to Steelpan music. More HERE

Friday, 10 June 2011

Bookslam. Jon Ronson, Hannah Peel and Francesca Beard.

I invariably enjoy Bookslam. It is refreshingly unpretentious and laid back. Last night was no exception. I was interested to hear Jon Ronson on his new book on how to spot a psychopath and pleased to be both amused and enlightened, I know he was selling a book but it didn't feel like he was selling a book. He looked like he was enjoying himself too. the event included a 'signer', the first time I have seen this at the Tabernacle. He added an extra dimension to the narrative and was a welcome addition to the proceedings, adding an element of theatre. the Psychopath Test is out now published by Picador.

Francesca Beard writes the kind of narrative poetry I like and is very comfortable to listen to. good fun too.

Hannah Peel was an absolute delight, her intelligent narrative songs delivered cookily (this is a compliment) and happily accompanied by a guitarist and intriguingly mask wearing keyboard/percussionist. I was enchanted by the music box she played for a couple of songs, she later informed me that she makes the paper reels herself with a hole puncher. I liked Hannah Peel a lot.

hannah's debut album 'the Broken Wave' is out now.

Good fun.

Thursday, 9 June 2011

A passion play at the Tabernacle W11.

Tuesday evenings meeting at the Tabernacle was a roaring success. Turnout was impressive, no doubt helped by the 'Reclaim the Tabernacle' flyers doing the rounds prior to the meeting. It was certainly passionate but at the same time constructive.

After an introduction from Shabaka (Carnival Village) a lively Q&A took place with a few grudges aired as well as some valid concerns from the community expressed, resulting in various ongoing discussions as to the use of the space. After a difficult couple of years the Tabernacle, under the Aegis of Shabaka, Chris Scholey and his team, now has the opportunity to move on to become an all inclusive centre for the community.

Sunday, 5 June 2011

Gossip on Portobello road. Pizza East and The Tabernacle.

It is a shame when yet another local pub closes down to be reincarnated as a trendy 'destination'. this has happened recently to the Fat Badger which once occupied the corner of Portobello and Goldbourne. It is now called Pizza East Portobello.

I had heard that the place was heaving the minute it opened. It is, but not necessarily for normal reasons. Pizza East is part of the Soho House chain. The Electric in Portobello Road is also part of this chain. when Pizza East opened the Electric closed for major refurbishment and memberships were transferred to Pizza East up the road.

We can safely assume that the majority of people using the new gaff at the moment will transfer their attention back to the Electric when it re-opens. I'll review Pizza East then.

The TABERNACLE in Powis square is holding a public meeting on Tuesday evening at 7.00 pm. The meeting is intended to set out to the local community the plans and aims for the Tabernacle in the years ahead.

There is a flyer going around demanding that the place be reclaimed for the community and calling for the meeting to be used as a rally. The flyer is anonymous. who is behind it? Is this another case of a small part of the community taking it upon itself to 'speak' for the community as a whole. I shall be interested to see if the 'Reclaim the Tabernacle' group is a fair representation of the Spanish, Portuguese, Somalian, Irish, Sri Lankan  etc etc members of the community. I have a feeling it will not be.

I'll report back on the meeting with an update.