Art & Culture on the Southbank

Now that I’m technically a grown up, being 18 years old, my mother finds it difficult to buy Christmas presents for me. Even though I would’ve been quite content with a litre of vodka, I also received tickets to the Globe theater in London to see The Little Matchgirl (probably because I’m a literature student). Never seeing a play before in my life, I was unsure of what to expect. As she paid ¬£50 for each ticket, it felt only fitting that I take my mother (although I probably could’ve impressed the hell out of a tinder date). The show was at 7.30 p.m.so we decided to spend the day enjoying the fruits of the Southbank, a strip along the Thames known for its art, culture and entertainment. Our first stop was at the Tate Modern.

I was amazed at the variety in the Tate. To be honest, I was expecting blank canvases and piles of garbage that are labelled as subjective, abstract political statements but was pleasantly suprised to see such pieces as that of Picasso.

The quote on this piece stood out to me for some reason, possibly due to the current political situation and the protests that were happening a few miles away in Westminster today. Protestors rudely interrupted the inauguration of President Trump yesterday during his message of peace and giving power back to the people. This quote seemed very relevant to the world’s response of America’s new leader.

Moving swiftly on from my controversial politics, I also enjoyed this study of the female form. The quick, harsh pen strokes suggest a sense of negativity and anger. The singular eye also stood out to me.

After we finished at the Tate, we didn’t know what to do for the remaining 2 hours so we walked along the river until we reached Borough Market. The street food from around the world was quite amazing, the Jamaican soul food, the Germans sausages, all in one place was quite beautiful and stood as a symbol of how we as a nation are accepting of all cultures.

After purchasing some weird oils and spices that my mother seems to like we went for a sort of pre-drinks at one of London’s oldest pubs. The old leather chairs and distressed wooden architecture was the perfect preparation for the historical architecture of the Globe theater.

Before the show, we had an extremely fancy 3 course meal and cocktails at a restaurant joined on to the Globe.  This was probably the highlight of the day, especially after a month of my attempts at cooking food at uni. Nonetheless, I would highly recommend this restaurant if you ever happen to be in the area and fancy feeling upper class for a few hours.

I was unable to take many pictures inside the theater for obvious reasons but above is my view of the stage. It was quite spectacular with the musicians looming above and the small, intimate atmosphere created by the circular seating. The play itself was not entirely what I expected but very well done. It was a collection of stories by Hans Christian Anderson: Thumbellina, The Emperor’s New Suit and The Princess And The Pea, all told by a narrator to a little puppet girl. Due to the comedy and infantile tone of the performance, it felt similar to the cringe worthy pantomimes that celebs who have hit rock bottom appear in at Christmas at times. Nevertheless, the atmosphere of the theater and the talent of the actors was spectacular.

All in all I had a very enjoyable day. The intertwining of modern art, culture and history was quite amazing. The people, the food and the architecture all took my breath away and gave me a new appreciation for the beauty of what one can find on the Southbank.

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December Drawings 

I was interested in the human form and expression of emotion last month. 

My first piece explores passion and the internal feeling of it conveyed as a physical form. A fluid object flying through the air, with two beings joining together as one. The pink heart shaped flare of light highlights the two lovers that may have otherwise been missed.

I decided to explore light and darkness in my second sketch, using the medium of charcoal. I drew from a leftover picture from when I photocopied my face (don’t ask…) to create a flat, squashed portion of my own face. A unique style of self portrait. I love the curves and contours in this piece as well as the darkness where the remainder of my appearance lies.