In this country you go from the sublime to the ridiculous … so much change, so much hidden … while Anna’s art exhibition has titles including ‘Watching’, ‘Staging’, ‘Casting’, ‘Establishing’ 'Propping', and more …
|Three canvases on display at gallery|
In the 1970s I was living a little to the east – yet during my time … there was an attempt by the residents of Freston Road to establish the Free and Independent Republic of Frestonia …
who knew, not me …
… the squatting residents failed in this attempt but did go on to set up a housing co-operative with the Notting Hill Housing Trust …
|The People's Hall,|
|Entrance to |
As I look and read up about the area: it’s fascinating … as I can appreciate how talent comes in all forms that leads to change and thought – that I, of the 3rd age, understand a little more today – and that’s come from blogging and the internet – where my eyes have been opened to much else in the world.
So this tiny motley site in the 1980s became a creative hub for writers, artists and musicians, as well as cultural activists.
|Casting - from Anna's exhibitoin|
It also as you can imagine became a fervent nest of human vipers … upsetting the establishment of greater London …
… the residents held a referendum on declaring independence (94% approved) – and – even more interestingly today perhaps for us Brits – were in favour (73%) of joining the European Economic Community – now the European Union.
|First edition - 1904|
Let’s go back to simpler times … Frestonia had its own flag, postage stamps (honoured by the Post Office); passport stamps for visitors; a national newspaper ‘The Tribal Messenger’, as well as an art gallery ‘The Car Breaker Gallery’ – within the confines of the Republic’s area of influence.
The Frestonia National Film Institute was also formed; its first screening being – appropriately – Passport to Pimlico* and a film of the Sex Pistols. (*about Pimlico suburb being declared a legal part of the House of Burgundy – released as a British comedy film from Ealing studios).
The Clash (an early English rock band) recorded their album Combat Rock in Ear Studios (also known as the People’s Hall); while they and Motorhead practised in Frestonia’s rehearsal studios.
The Clash’s music was often charged with left-wing ideological sentiments … and were dubbed by the New Musical Express as “The Thinking Man’s Yobs”.
I have put some links at the bottom … as I’ve been so interested looking into Frestonia … but let’s move on to the art exhibition I went to see: my reason for being in Frestonia – albeit forty years too late!
|Lower third of Anna's work|
'Jacob's Ladder in Chichester Cathedral
I’ve shown you Jacob’s Ladder – Anna Bentley Freeman’s exhibit under the title ‘Descent’ being set in Chichester Cathedral in 2016 … and here was another exhibition that I could visit and offer Anna some family support.
This exhibition entitled ‘Order and Chaos’ … deliberation and spontaneity – where she has depopulated her canvases …
… the flea market scenes have been purposefully emptied out of human figures … as too the carefully staged museum ‘interiors’ of cities around the world … bringing order to the often ramshackleness of the flea market scenes.
She loves the baroque – as seen here in the qualities of vibrance, grandeur and a certain sensuality present in all things … giving the exhibited works that splendour of colour so often found in ‘museums’ and flea-markets …
I was entranced … so will let you peruse … if you would like to look at the Gallery’s exhibit site.
Next – we’re off to Tate Britain … where Steve McQueen – the British film maker – had an exhibition on … and I’ll elaborate on his works at Tate Modern that I skated over.
Thanks for joining me on these various parts of my one day in London town earlier this year – I’m glad I’ve extrapolated on the whole.
Passport to Pimlico - an Ealing Sudios comedy film
G K Chesterton's 'The Napoleon of Notting Hill' published 1904
This is still not quite right ... but better than it was on publishing - this is the new way!! (new blogger)
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