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What happened that night, inside your hours
Is as unknown as if it never happened.
What accumulation of your whole life,
Like effort unconscious, like birth
Pushing through the membrane of each slow second
Into the next, happened
Only as if it could not happen
As if it was not happening.
What a hype around this Hughes poem and yet it took me hours to find the whole thing online (OK, maybe not hours). It feels a bit like looking into the sun as it’s dying says Carol Ann Duffy about it. My favourite poets at the age of 17: Sexton, Plath and Boye. How bloody self-destructive and pitiful, right? I used to, starry-eyed, commend suicides as bravely taking control of the one thing you cannot control but, alas, I think that this, as everything else, is false comfort. You can play with life but not with death. Now, with a bit more zest for life, I am a lot less morbid (but, I admit, still unreasonably fascinated by the glorification of anguished artists). Anyhow, I’m just back from a walk in da hood where I happened to pass by the tragic scene in question. The plaque reads William Butler Yeats (who lived there at some point and Sylvia’s plaque is on another house she lived at, just around the corner) but this is where it, indeed, did happen. What would it feel like, I wonder, to live in a house like that?
I had a meeting on High Street Ken this morning and spent the rest of the day wandering around that which is, without a doubt, the best part of town. At the V&A I found a Rossetti I haven’t seen before, watched adorable little school children sketch William Morris patterns (I know this sounds like suspicious behavior… I can assure you children hold no special place in my heart – to put it mildly – but I love watching kids and art.) and discovered that the tapestry room is a most calm and meditative place. I then went to check out these mirror installations by Anish Kapoor in Kensington Gardens.
I found it largely unimpressive, almost a bit ugly and not all as good as his other work. But then, to be fair, the weather was not doing anyone any favours today. They are due to stay until next year so I will try to swing by on a bright, sunshiny day and search for that wonder, felt last year at his RA show. I also went to see Klara Lidén’s stuff at the Serpentine Gallery. I don’t get it. At all. But hey ho, so it goes. Jean Nouvel’s pavilion is amazing though, I wish I had made the effort to go to see it in the summer, in all its glory.
Red, red, red. Anish Kapoor feels strongly about red. Matisse did too, and Kokoschka. Gauguin adored red. Not to talk about Rothko. Red protects itself. No colour is as territorial. It stakes a claim, is on the alert against the spectrum said Derek Jarman but he felt very strongly about that whole spectrum I believe. I have lost his little book on colours I realize now and I miss it. Well, cheerio!
I am reduced to a thing that wants Virginia. I composed a beautiful letter to you in the sleepless, nightmare hours of the night, and it has all gone: I just miss you, in a quite simple, desperate, human way. You, with all your undumb letters, would never write so elementary a phrase as that; perhaps you wouldn’t even feel it. And yet I believe you’ll be sensible of a little gap. But you’d clothe it in so exquisite a phrase that it would lose a little of its reality. Whereas with me it is quite stark: I miss you even more than I could have believed, and I was prepared to miss you a good deal. So this letter is really just a squeal of pain. It is incredible how essential to me you have become. I suppose you are accustomed to people saying these things. Damn you, spoilt creature; I shan’t make you love me any the more by giving myself away like this—but oh my dear, I can’t be clever and standoffish with you: I love you too much for that. Too truly. You have no idea how standoffish I can be with people I don’t love. I have brought it to a fine art. But you have broken down my defenses. And I don’t really resent it.
Vita Sackville-West, 1927, Milan
Right, so fashion month is heading towards its end. I don’t often post anything fashion related (enough people do already – people who are actually there and who are, usually, skinny and pretty and stylish enough to put me off it) as my favourites are always the same (whether they do a good show or not, I’m loyal!): Badgley Mischka, Chloé, Fendi, Francesco Scognamiglio, Marchesa…
But seriously Chanel, you were something else this year and you deserve a mention. I am not a big Chanel fan, blasphemous as that might sound, but these dresses…I covet!
This last one was actually my planned look for the summer just past. But as I got caught up in boredom and depression I never really got around to it. So I am glad I will have another chance, next year. For as Karl says, the inspiration for the collection is Delphine Seyrig’s Coco Chanel designed costumes in Last Year in Marienbad, but this is next year, somewhere else.
the show (Check out 05:30! Cutest thing ever!)
A rebuilt Grand Palais featured fountains, mazes and a full-blown live orchestra playing hit renditions. And even if the models are “only” walking, with the intricate layout of the stage, it becomes a piece of beautiful symmetric choreography. This is not just fashion, it’s an art performance.
L’Année dernière à Marienbad (1961)