Saturday, 23 March 2013

Ziggy Played Guitar

Despite waking up to a blanket of snow   (come on... it's almost April and I really have had enough!) we decided to brave the weather and head into London for the day. Our first stop was the V & A for David Bowie is, the retrospective exhibition of "the most inspirational musical figure of the past 40 years"
It didn't disappoint. The collection of handwritten lyrics, costumes, photography, album artwork and videos set against an innovative sound system that changed as we moved through the exhibits was fascinating. Admittedly it was padded out by lots of extraneous material which probably could be irritating... not sure why we needed a framed map of Berlin just becuse Bowie lived there... but both Stewart and I are great fans. My formative teenage years were played aginst a backdrop of his music, I had my hair cut like Ziggy Stardust and was known to go out wearing Aladdin Sane make-up (and I'm grateful no photographs exist!) So we both felt it was a great exhibition and I'll definitely go back again. Although to be fair you probably do need to be a fan to enjoy it.

I particularly liked some of the Alexander McQueen costumes such as this Union Jack coat... and of course the music... it still makes my spine tingle! After a quick lunch, we hopped on the tube again and made our way to Somerset House for  Wool House, an exhibition finishing this weekend, that showcases the various ways wool can be used to inhabit a space.

This was a fascinating exhibition with contributions from a wide range of designers and craftspeople. I loved these huge felted hangings by Claudy Jongstra
It was also an exhibition full of humour and I loved the quirky knitted creatures by Donna Wilson that featured in the fabulous nursery that she had created. And it was also fun to see the brilliant crochetdermy bear by Shauna Richardson. Not sure I would want him standing in my hall though!

Leaving Somerset House we decided to walk to Russell Square to the next exhibition... just as the snow decided to fall harder! But not to be deterred we carried on to the University of London Brunei Gallery for another exhibition that finished today - World Eco-Fibre and Textile Art.

It featured some beautiful woven, dyed and embroidered textiles, alongside some contemporary textile art and jewellery but yet it failed to wow me like I thought it would. I would even go as far as to say I was a little disappointed and glad I hadn't made the trip into town just to see this, which was a shame as it came highly recommended. Maybe I was too tired and three exhibitions in a day was just too much... and after all... Ziggy had played Guitar today... and you can't beat that!


  1. How did I not know of any of these exhibs?! I'd have loved to see the woolly exhibition. Less sure about the Bowie one though as I was never a fan - more of a goth, complete with purple nail varnish and lots of black eye make up!

  2. Now, those photos of you would have been well worth seeing!

  3. Always a Bowie fan myself, and saw him twice during the seventies. Sounds like a great exhibition. You certainly got your money's worth out of your trip!

  4. I think it's a bit of a shame there is no photographic evidence of you made-up as Aladdin Sane!!! ;)
    Bowie was good! Looks like a great exhibiting.
    V xxx

  5. You WERE brave to risk the snow!

    I was never a huge Bowie fan, although I really admire his longevity in the music business. He is also VERY cool. I LOVE that Union Jack coat! What do you make of his latest album?!

    Super little knitted creatures and fab bear too!

  6. Gina, before getting on to your London trip, I want to compliment you on that incredible cake...the knitting is lovely...perhaps the icing yarn was just a little unpredictable in its boucle slubbiness.

    Now...on to London. I would so love to see the Bowie show at the V&A. I'm an overseas V&A member, and have just received the current members magazine with the Bowie cover. He really has been and is a very creative fellow who's followed his own path.

    (Some years ago, I went to the theatre in London with incredible stalls seating via a discount ticket. The play was Skylight starring Michael Gambon. Seated just a few seats to my left was D Bowie and wife Iman. The rest of our row contained very old (even older than Mr B and myself) folks who had no clue who was in our presence.) Cool, huh?)

    I do like the few songs I've heard from the new album, but can understand why some folks don't.


  7. Oh now I wish I'd made the effort to see the wool exhibition, as I love Donna Wilson. And surely there must be some pictures of you in the hair and makeup somewhere! K x

  8. He really was so beautiful - I'm looking forward to going to the V&A even more now.
    Pity there are no photos of you in the make up - sadly, there are none of me going out with sequins stuck around my eyes with eyelash glue either.

  9. Shame about the lack of Ziggy style photos! You and Stewart certainly have stamina tackling three exhibitions in one day - I think I must be past it, though I would have enjoyed the Wool exhibition. I'm looking for a pattern for a long sleeved pure wool sundress for the summer!!!

  10. Oh, I can't tell you how much I should love to see the Bowie exhibition, I love that man to death! I always kept my hair like his, whatever the style of the time. Sad perhaps?

  11. Sounds like a wonderful day out. I loved the Ziggy Stardust album - great memories of my teens lol. How come you always know so much about what's on and manage to find all these interesting exhibitions? :)

  12. Wow, that was a tiring day!! Love that fox and I agree, the bear would scare me to death!!


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