I’ve spent the whole day in Shoreditch once again enjoying the art scene and trying to get the last bit of material for my research while I’m here. Yesterday I met up with Tizer, a very well respected street artist. He was partaking in the annual Meeting of the Styles and we did a little interview, recorded him paint and met some of the other artists he was sharing the wall with including Wisher, Lovepusher, Aeon, Freedom, Really good time with some really good people, and I am missing out on a very good exclusive party in order to write this and pack for my flight out tomorrow morning. You know, the street art/ graffiti world may have a pretty closed circle but they most definitely are warm and welcoming to anyone who approaches them. Just don’t walk about and ask for your name to be tagged, be respectful of the art; these are artists not monkeys.
Anyway, prior to the street art love fest my study abroad group went to the Tate
Modern and we had the chance to see the Matisse Cutouts exhibit on top of the other exhibits they had open. There was a piece by Bill Viola that really stood out because it was so disorienting and completely freaky… its awesome, seriously happy I got to experience that. There were excellent installation pieces as well by Jannis Kounellis.
This whole time we have went to museums and galleries so there has been a lot of walking going on and I am pretty sure I’ve dropped 10 lbs this week due to the strenuous exercise. I wish we had this tube system in Florida then I wouldn’t need to exercise and bother with driving everywhere. Even though things are much more fast paced and almost chaotic here with so many people coming from everywhere, there definitely still is a sense of authenticity with people. In the US I feel the people attach themselves to material possessions and appearances and that is why I saw more selfies taking place around the American airports as I waited for my flight than I saw during my stay here. People actually engage in conversation with each other over tea or coffee or go to the pub after work to watch the games because there seems to be a communal mindset. Yes, people do take pictures and they do talk and text like crazy but they do not pull out their technological devices when they ride the tube or bus, instead they interact with their neighbor or read. Well on the tube you don’t get reception really but on the buses you do. But I think a better example is when you are talking with a stranger and everything’s going good until you happen to run out of anything to say and instead of pulling out the phone to make a fake desperate attempt to scroll through things that could make the moment less awkward, they engage in conversation. The people I’ve generally engaged with have made it almost impossible for it to get awkward because they keep seeming interested and if I wasn’t really saying much (it can’t be helped when there is not enough energy left) they would politely excuse themselves.
So yea, there are great people here but I’ve also heard some really rude things come from them too, but I’m not sure if that really counts cause it didn’t involve me and they were usually driving or drunk. Either way, that’s my culture shock experience for ya. I was going to post some pictures of the museums/galleries we went to but there were quite a lot: British Museum, Courtault Museum, Saatchi Gallery, a gallery that starts with a “G” and showed Jenny Seville’s work, and many more smaller galleries. Unfortunately I haven’t had the chance to go to the planned tourist attractions like I planned such as the cafe’s and the gardens but regardless I have become quite familiar with the Shoreditch area and I have learned so much from so many people.
Perhaps since I will be sitting at the airport for 6 hours tomorrow waiting for me flight, I might post some more pictures of the things I’ve seen and the knowledge I’ve gained.