O U T S I D E L E F T   stay i n d e p e n d e n t

YIR: 300 Words from London or Please Sir, Can I Have some Moore?

Our man in London, weighs in on the two tons of Missing Moore, and so on

get the weekly Outsideleft newsletter
by Lake, Editor, London for outsideleft.com
originally published: January, 2006
Sycophancy as high art. I was lucky not to get air-kissed to death in the melee.
by Lake, Editor, London for outsideleft.com
originally published: January, 2006
Sycophancy as high art. I was lucky not to get air-kissed to death in the melee.

Since I got the job as outsideleft's man in the UK, and since that entails trying to come up with a meagre 300 words of opinion and information on supposedly interesting cultural phenomena from London (which as we all know remains the capital of the world), I have spent hours pounding the pavements in 2005 just looking for something, anything, to write about. That and trying to beat 60 words for an opening sentence which I have just managed now.

I have seen a lot more art shows than I would usually have bothered going to. Most of the best ones I wrote about, a few really good ones I didn't get around to. So a belated big thumbs up for the Africa Remix show at the Hayward Gallery, Paul McCarthy at the Whitechapel and Henri Rousseau at the Tate.

The Frieze Art fair was a dismal experience. Aside from the "expensive biscuit" fiasco I was also witness to an excruciating display of arselicking as the staff of the world's best known fashion magazine greeted David Bailey who had happened to take a seat right next to me. Sycophancy as high art. I was lucky not to get air-kissed to death in the melee.

In any case, my favourite art story of the year is also one of the last. On December 16th or thereabouts thieves made off with a two ton Henry Moore sculpture from a park in Hertfordshire. Valued at $5m, police fear that it will be sold for $5000 scrap.

Coincidentally, on the day I read about the theft, I had been listening to Tony Hancock's "Michelangelo 'Ancock" in which Sid James steals various sculptures to be entered into a local sculpture competition. And the whole Moore theft seems like the plot to an old sitcom. Even the local police have given their investigation the ridiculous title Operation Souffle, surely only to enhance its potential to one day be filmed as a latter day Ealing Comedy.

As I write this I guess there may be one less Henry Moore in the world and a couple of tonnes more brass. Ironically, in the Hancock episode, Tony suggests that Henry Moore will have to go back to door knockers when he sees how good a sculptor Hancock is. Two tons of bronze makes a lot of knockers.

see more stories from outsideleft's Culture archive »»

Lake
Editor, London

the first journalism Lake ever had published was a history of Johnny Thunders for Record Collector magazine, since then he has written for publications including the Guardian, Dazed and Confused, the Idler and more recently, outsideleft.com as you have just seen.

OUTSIDELEFT Night Out 2
 
best LPs of 2019 Bill Callahan... best LPs of 2019
  1. Shepherd in a Sheepskin Vest - Bill Callahan
  2. Return to Me - Lilac Time
  3. 2020 - Richard Dawson
  4. Chalk Hill Blue - Will Burns & Hannah Peel
  5. All Mirrors - Angel Olsen
Sno Aalegra... best LPs of 2019
  1. Shlagenheim - black midi
  2. The Imperial - The Delines
  3. Old New - Tomeka Reid Quartet
  4. Ugh, Those Feels Again - Snoh Aalegra
  5. 5 - Sault
Esther Rose... best LPs of 2019
  1. You Made it this Far - Esther Rose
  2. Hiding Places - billy woods + Kenny Segal
  3. I Found a Place - Bonnie 'Prince' Billy
  4. Thanks for the Dance - Leonard Cohen
  5. Walk Through Fire - Yola
David Benjamin Blower... best LPs of 2019
  1. We Really Did This and We Really Existed - David Benjamin Blower
  2. The Reeling - Brighde Chaimbeul
  3. Eton Alive - Sleaford Mods
  4. Purple Mountains - Purple Mountains
  5. Biiri - Nihiloxica

more stories you really could read...


thumb through the ancient archives:

search for something you might like...


sign up for the outsideleft weekly. a selection of new and archived stories every week. Or less.

View previous campaigns.

Happy Shopper #34 - Carrie Reichardt The Renegade Potter
Fight for your right to be arty.
Youth & Young Manhood Part 1
Joe Ambrose, on the 25th anniversary of a Rolling Stones show at Dublin's Slane Castle, looks back while not looking backwards
RIP Mitch Hedberg
Donny Ducote: My Christmas Wish List is Ancient History now
Ancient History's Donny Ducote talks about Christmas. A little. A little reluctantly.
Music for a Peruvian Hootenanny
Novalima know... You can change the world when you are dancing
Dead Ledger
The passing of Heath Ledger, a youngster commented to the New York Times, is akin to the demise of James Dean
Some of our favorite things...