Lee Wagstaff, improbably dressed, wearing his art under
his sleeve, last night in SW1. Picture by Total Blam Blam.
Full of blood, loving life and all it's got to give...
Went to the Lee Wagstaff private view last night that I mentioned in the news yesterday. The show is being held in a huge private house in Belgrave Square in two very large rooms. The place was heaving with the sort of folk that I feel a little intimidated by...you know the type, painfully hip and talking far too convincingly about art all the time...like it makes sense. Bit like Rex Ray. (Hallo love)
Anywaaaay...It was all very tastefully done, with huge life-size C-Prints of Lee in various domestic situations, shopping, vacuuming etc. Only joking, the prints are actually very beautiful things that show Lee in all his natural tattooed glory in various settings; a dark forest, submerged in a bath, standing up to his chest in a lake etc., etc. Very impressive stuff.
Lee standing in front of 'Shroud' which, despite the
optical illusion, is life-size. Picture by Total Blam Blam.
Then around eight o'clock, Lee, in a bright orange boiler suit, (looking like an escapee from Camp X-Ray) squeezed through the throng for his 'performance' which consists of him stripping down to a loin cloth and standing on a rotating plinth while some stirring music played. It all sounds very silly, but it was actually quite moving and very spiritual, not least of all because Lee looked so serious and mournful and as if he was about to burst into tears. He was probably just nervous.
After about ten minutes of this, the music climaxed and as soon as it ended, Lee was gone again. I got to have a quick chat with him after his performance, and I have to say he has an unnerving presence. Not the biggest bloke on Earth, Lee is slight of build and the type that immediately makes one feel protective toward them, the fact that he has undergone such a painful process for his art seems quite perverse now. A bit like those kid boxers at Town Hall charity event type things.
Whatever, his art is good, and if you get a chance to go check out the exhibition you really should. See yesterday's news, or click on the images above to take you to the BowieArt feature for further details. While we're on the subject of Illustrated Men...
Ken The Mo
Englishman going insane...
Not much of a Bowie connection to this one I'm afraid, (not yet at least) but, another artist I got chatting to at the do last night, who goes by the name of Ken The Mo, claims to be a work-in-progress himself. Tattooed upon his chest is the legend: "BORN 1961" with a target tattooed below that, and finally the word "DIED" tattooed beneath that. This of course is the "work-in- progress". Apparently Katey M as he is known when not working (Ken The Mo, KTM, Katey M...get it?) exhibits himself for eight hours on the first Sunday of every month at various locations around the globe.
Not sure how legal any of this can be, but the 'exhibition' consists of a naked Ken The Mo seated in front of a table, upon which a loaded firearm is placed, while Ken The Mo mumbles "Go on, pick it up, do it..." and similar phrases to startled passers-by. You've guessed the rest.
Katey claims the artwork will be completed by a Japanese collaborator who has already bought his skin for a considerable amount. The collaborator will fill in the final date when Ken The Mo dies, either by natural causes or when his murder is provoked while exhibiting himself. If Katey doesn't manage the route of natural causes, this will surely be a case for Nathan Adler!
I sort of befriended Katey after we chatted last night, but I'm not sure how long the friendship will last, as I am afraid it may be a relationship founded purely on my morbid curiosity. But anyway, let's just hope the chap is around long enough to stay friends with!