Wednesday, 2 March 2016

The best thing about going to see art? Definitely NOT just the coffee...

You gotta love Banksy - he says whatever he wants, no holds barred. This quote's from an interview he did with The Guardian just before the launch of Dismaland, his revival of a deserted theme park in Weston-Super-Mare. I heard from friends who managed to get tickets that it was a really fun, challenging, new experience of art, with an excellent bar. Mind you, they didn't say anything about the coffee...

Anyhoo, it got me thinking of what I like best about going to galleries and museums, particularly with smallies in tow. To be honest, I often find the gallery experience intimidating and prefer to pound the streets of Hackney with the kiddos, browsing the streetart and not worrying about them getting fingerprints on the fine prints, crumbs on the cabinets or doodoos on the dados!

Then, Zabou announced on twitter that she was working on a mural in the Saatchi Gallery, where she is currently exhibiting her work with other female streetartists. If you're a Hackney local, you'll definitely have come across her work - it's bright, funny and bold and seems never to be painted over by anyone other than herself (respect).

It's her kids in the header bar here and here are some more of my favourites...

Her announcement gave me a right good #KickUpTheArts and I immediately got the babychild all packed up and ventured west to the King's Road.

It was a pain in the #arts getting there, but all in all, it was totally ‪#‎artskicking‬ and definitely NOT intimidating. Saatchi Gallery had a very relaxed approach to the babychild and to the art in general - no barriers or ropes here, which seemed to make all the smallies behave better than they normally would in a gallery situation... Good ol' reverse psychology, works like a charm ;)

It's a beautiful space, entry is FREE, the exhibition is beeyoot and I can't believe it took me 15 years to visit. Here's what Zabou painted by the way - "In Art We Trust". It's in the gift shop, go have a looksee if you can.

So what am I trying to say here? A couple of things I suppose...

Firstly - Streetart is powerful when it comes to challenging perceptions about art:
- It's definitely not posh.
- Anyone with talent, a can of paint and a ‪#‎kickarts‬ attitude can do it.

- It's explosion into the mainstream and the demand for prints has made it possible for many streetartists to make a very decent living, so there's less pressure on "The Bank Of Mum & Dad". (Read all about the growth of the streetart industry here)

The move into galleries is hotly debated within the streetart community as a sellout, but I think it's a good thing. So long as our streets don't suffer ;)

Secondly - Galleries are great. Get over your fears and get into them. I've been collecting hints and tips about getting the most out of your visits with the kiddos - find them here.

As ever, I'd love to know what you think - comment here or join in on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Pinterest. AND don't forget the streetart pic competition is now on!

Oh yeah, getting back to Banksy's point... there was NO COFFEE!!! If anyone can recommend a proper barista in the King's Road neighbourhood, please do - us Hackney folk are spoiled rotten on this front too. I'm off to Climpson's for my daily dose.  

The Arts Crusader

P.S. Join my crusade on  Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Pinterest and give yourself a #KickUpTheArts

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