Germaine Greer on Unknown Brown & Other Stories

Published in the Observer Magazine 23 Sept 2007, I read with some interest an introduction by Germaine Greer to the new Jane Brown 128 page Photography book "Unknown Brown". Sounds like a great book!! But what puzzles me the most which I also find unpalatable & bitter is the personality & in general other comparisons that Ms Greer makes between Jane Brown & Diane Arbus. Having read the article, midway there are complimentary comparisons with Bresson,Frank & this & that.....But somehow Germaine Greer manages to arrive at a negative comparison which is no more that an obvious personality attach upon the now dead, Diane Arbus. It sounds very Negative, bitter, deliberate & pointless. Why bring one down to push one up!!! Why do it AT ALL!!?? whats the point!!! Fair enough to want to compare Jane Brown to the likes of Bresson & all that, but why the urge to even bring up such a negative personal reflection of Diane Arbus's personality which can only be due to Germaine Greer's own experience with Diane Arbus which has obviously left a scar!!! Don't get me wrong, I don't know Jane Brown personally but I know of her work & some great work she has & this takes nothing away from Jane Brown., but I do feel that it takes something away from Germaine Greer!!! Not worthy of the Alive & the kicking & kicking she does!!! Some Love Arbus & Some Hate it.....& its a free country.....& maybe Germaine Greer even states the obvious but I for one don't think so!! In my view, its an overriding internal obsession.... If its that bad I suggest that Germain Greer should pick up the Phone here & tell Diane Arbus "I wish you were dead"!!! Let the dead be.....but, here is the phone.....

Digital Invasion

The Epitaph!
I recently wrote to the BJP. below is the edited version of my letter published in the BJP last issue 25.7.07....Aug 1st 2007:
-------------- :
I read with somewhat raised eyebrows and half open mouth, but not totally shocked, the comment by Simon Bainbridge, Living on the margin (BJP, 11 July), explaining the new guidelines from The Times Magazine setting a maximum rate of £100 for digital processing.
This gives me a great excuse to now write to Tesco which is offering to sell houses, or at least, offering advertising billboards for sellers for as little as £50, causing great concern to estate agents. For the £100 digital processing fee offered by The Times, Tesco could also enter the photographic market, by arming night shift shelf stackers with compact cameras and a little Photoshop training. They could maybe even make a deal with The Times Magazine to do processing for £49.99 rather than £100!
We won't make a living at £100, so why be greedy?


Living On The Margin

Last week, in the latest issue of the British Journal Of Photography I read that the Times Magazine has set a new £100 record FEE ( I think that's what they called it) for image processing paid to photographers. This has given me a great excuse to write to TESCO. you might have heard in the news recently, that TESCO are offering mini advertising BILL BOARDS for home sellers to advertise their homes! this they say: is not designed to take business away from the notorious estate agents ( not that I mind the estate agents to get a run for their money you understand!) but I wonder now if TESCO would like to perhaps also enter the Photography industry by arming the night shift shelf stackers (who do a wonderful job for the money & for whom I have all the respect) with compact digital cameras & teach them a few photoshop lessons ( the cost of which no doubt TESCO can recoup from their wages) & join forces with the TIMES & offer an image processing for a competitive £49.99 ( & a free Bottle of 1.5 Lt Evian Water) hence eliminating the need for the times to use freelance thus sharing all the proceeds between themselves. That way, we can brick our doors & all stay at home!!! Now, isn't that a good idea?? to celebrate the occasion I dedicate the image below XXX to all the industrialists in the world.


Image Democracy

A slightly edited version of this was published in the BJP on 16.5.07 :

Letters: Oh this new-fangled terminology!
I'm feeling somewhat inferior, and so do a few other photographer friends! We feel that perhaps we are not intelligent or intellectual enough to participate in the current and now global issue of 'image democracy', and derivatives of the word democracy, so close to the hearts of some photographers, critics and experts (Special report, BJP 02 May).
Government by people, political or social equality is what I
understand democracy to mean! I do understand that from time to time human nature craves for the invention of new-fangled terminologies to put one's views,philosophies & theories in the upper clouds &/or in the realm of the intelligent to separate oneself from the others and win a place on the panel rather than in the nodding audience. We live in an age where excess of everything has resulted in the separation and distinguishing of ability by words rather than by what we produce!
The use of mobile phones is a global phenomenon.Even Dogs own mobile phones! Is that 'communication democracy'? More people buy cars than ever, is that 'transport democracy'? Kate Moss has introduced a fashion range, is that 'Moss democracy?' Is water shortage is some parts of the world 'liquid dictatorship' and is a 39 million pixel back 'digital imperialism' or am I just insane?!

Many Thanks to BJP.


Soulmates, Lonely Hearts

Intelligent Army Officer,likes risks, WLTM Middle-Eastern Kidnapper/s for hide & seek,Poetry evenings & a 50% share of any eventual publishing rights, who knows even a movie right & interviews, Must be photogenic & preferably with a full beard, for fun & frolics. reply in confidence to 0999 999 999

2.8 million or so children, into living below the poverty line & other stories WLTM senior officials & industrialists into super casino building for just Hugs & kisses, a decent meal & a roof & who knows may be more, male or female considered
Call 0999 999 999

Desperate & Aching in the mouth female WLTM a dentist for repairs & drills, No perverts please! call 0999 999 999

Non-Judgmental Art Buyer, 50's,into arts of any sort,preferably conceptual,seeks gullible female art investor/s to part with large sums of cash, & walks in obscure galleries,waffle talk,wine,dine,schmooze and may be more,Ldn, call 0999 999 999

Unshaven but inaccurate Mathematician, 60's,into Olympic Games budgeting,Lively but unattractive, love photoshop,seeks ANYONE male or female or both with at least £9 Billion spare cash, walks in the park,F/ship & who know may be more! call 0999 999 999

Bald Headed Cigar Smoking Fat Oil company tycoon, 86, into exploration,exploitation & politics,love hollow promises, water pipes & stockings, looking for a funky slim middle eastern,African or anywhere else,government official to sign the exploration rights away for peanuts, fun & frolics,bribery & poss more. Call 0999 999 999

Supermarket Mogul Mongrel, 46,ostensibly honest & consumer caring,Loves Milk & dairy farmers,grass,travel & Cider,seeks all types of gorgeous family farmers for honest dealings,screwing,sharing love but not profit & Blackpool outings,may be pushing off the cliff,cinema,and intelligent epitaphs. Call 0999 999 999

Blank Is The New Banal, Said: David Toyne!

How right David was in my previous Blog when he said that "Banal is the new Blank" well said. I was in Amsterdam week before last & had to laugh to myself remembering what David said when I visited a Gallery enjoying some great work, but amongst which were 3 WHITE canvas's on the wall. I think they might have had something very faint on them, or may be they were finger marks of disbelievers, so random artists wanting to add something to the canvas or indeed the "ARTIST" itself. To be honest, I didn't even read the notes on the wall, but it was memorable that I had to take this picture at the risk of getting arrested in the Gallery & here is the picture below!!

So, looks like Banal "Is" the new Blank!!! I was so very lucky because just as I took this picture, I heard the voice of Sir Philleep Pumpa-Tube behind me!!! Hello Sir Philleep what you doing here I said?? buying some art son, he replied. Sir Philleep also being one of the highest universal Art authorities & a huge art Collector had just flown in from London. He just paid $22 Million for a "Soiled" Pair of cotton under garment clothing by the famous artist Nancy pussylips! the next big thing. I asked Sir Philleeps opinion about the Blank Canvas whilst I had him there. he gave me a "Don't you know your art you idiot" look and the he explained: The whiteness of the dillematic domains of the dimensional perspective in the notional integrity of the artists mind is obviously resonating in the emotional ambient of the neo draft post dada modernism in which the abstract & the moderate template of the past apocalyptic emotions are clearly illustrated! Do you now get it he asked me!??? Arf Arf Arf I said.

PS. I did try to link the word "David" by some HTML instructions, but I failed miserably. (at first!)


Why Banal is Cool!!!

Am I dreaming or is Banal cool!!! when did this happen?? has Banal Always been cool??? is Banal a concept??? If you don't "get" Banal, then you're definitely not cool!!! Do you want to be cool??? Do you want to be Banal??? I love Banal!!! I like it on toast in the morning!!! & I like to study Banal!!! Its cool to study Banal!!! I like elongated discussions about Banal!!! food for the soul!!! I went out with "Banal" in mind & this is the best I could do!!! I hope its cool. Banal is cool, cool is anti, anti is saleable,salable is money,money is bankable,bankable is spendable,spendable is cool,cool is Banal!!! Oh dear. anyhow, I hope to win a prize with this picture, then I get some money, money is bankable...............


Prison Population, Etc Etc Etc....

This morning,I was lucky enough to get a few minutes interview with the world most famous political & economy strategist, guru & adviser to the most powerful governments & global industrialists, Sir Philleep Pumpa-Tube. I caught up with him just as he was stamping out his $80 Cohiba Cigar on the tarmac before boarding his Lear Jet heading to Switzerland to collect the 2007 Noble prize for his inhumanitarian contribution and advise on how to write off Africa without the loss of any oil,mineral,precious metals & diamond extraction rights. I only have 30 seconds he said, so can you just get on with it & tell me what you'd like my opinion on?? yes yes yes I said, just want your views about several important issues that are on minds of ordinary people......Get on with it he interrupted.....Ok Ok...., the recent overcrowded prison issue,high interest rate,rise in the national debt, inflation, environmental issues,rise in the price of milk, bread & water, health care & hospital closures, massive increases in the Gas & Electricity prices,high property prices making it impossible for young people to get on the property ladder, increases in train & air travel tickets, costs of wars just to name a few & i wondered what is you view about all that Sir Phileep!???? Sir Phileep Pumpa-Tube, the most renowned & respected politician in the world pondered for a few seconds, deep in thoughts, really deep in thoughts & then he said: Son! take a picture!!! I can summarise all the answers to all your questions & concerns in one "pose" to show you all how much we really care, take a picture son, this is my message to your readers & viewers internationally:

Now get off, I'm running late!


TV Licence

I was so Gutted to hear that the TV licence went up this week!!! really upset!!! not because I objected to the rise, but because I couldn't enjoy participating in rise of yet another living expense! you see, I threw my TV away about 7 years ago & have lived without one since. So when i heard that the Fees had gone up, I wished I had "one" so I could now pay more!!! I love paying more for "every thing" on a daily basis. I often think living expenses don't go up enough fast enough, you know what I mean!? I remember a line from The Essential Groucho by Groucho Marx, something like: The Television is a great educational invention, every time someone turns it on, I go next door & read a good book!!! so, anyhow, alas I cant make a contribution to this extra expense, I'm Gutted!!! but wait a minue! may be I "CAN" make a contribution!! its not mine but its a contribution at least & I dont think he would have minded.

Its the lyrics from a Zappa album, Over-Nite Sensation, called I'm The Slime: yes may be I can make a contribution by default after all!!! Ohhhhh, I feel better now. here it is, he wrote:

I am gross and perverted
I'm obsessed 'n deranged
I have existed for years
But very little has changed
I'm the tool of the Government
And industry too
For I am destined to rule
And regulate you

I may be vile and pernicious
But you can't look away
I make you think I'm delicious
With the stuff that I say
I'm the best you can get
Have you guessed me yet?
I'm the slime oozin' out
From your TV set

You will obey me while I lead you
And eat the garbage that I feed you
Until the day that we don't need you
Don't go for help . . . no one will heed you
Your mind is totally controlled
It has been stuffed into my mold
And you will do as you are told
Until the rights to you are sold

That's right, folks . . .
Don't touch that dial

Well, I am the slime from your video
Oozin' along on your livin' room floor
I am the slime from your video
Can't stop the slime, people, lookit me go

I am the slime from your video
Oozin' along on your livin' room floor

I am the slime from your video
Can't stop the slime, people, lookit me go

& that sadly ends this contribution brought to you by Sir Philleep Pumpa-Tube & more of him later!


Present Day Street Photographer

I was reading an interview with Frank Zappa in an old copy of MOJO magazine & it ended with a quote from Edgard Varese who was one of Zappa's favorite composers & it was..."The present day composer refuses to die......" not quite wanting to get into Zappa's own story at this time, but having read this quote several times in the past, it dawned on me that it can also be true & apply to many other talents etc, here it is: in memory of the BEST, The present day street photographer refuses to die...!