Amelia’s Magazine | Harry Pye’s Values at Sartorial Contemporary Art: Exhibition Review

Richard Galpin Splinter XIII
Hot Fiction by Aniela Murphy.

The King William IV, adiposity located north of ‘where the hell am I?’, order or on this Saturday night, the river Thames, is a relatively secluded venue that doubles as a hostel. This is where I find myself for tonight’s Hot Fiction gig, the blues and riff led garage band that have been unashamedly filling up my commute time for most of the past week since discovering their debut record Dark Room. Arriving at the venue, having been drenched by what appears to be the second flood, I was ready for a stiff drink and a warm welcome, and luckily I was greeted by both.

Once the band took to stage, which at first I incidentally thought they were staff; due to their laid back and approachable manner, they enthusiastically introduced themselves and got to work at rocking the room. Easing any newcomers in with their blissful sound of soul filled vocals that can make the toughest man quiver to his knees; Andy Yeoh has a great set of pipes. The tracks flowed with ease throughout the hour long set, with a couple of covers including Stevie Wonder’s Superstitious were thrown in for good measure. Highlights of the night were extended versions of Get out of My House, and Autumn Girl, with a momentary law breaking moment when a familiar volunteer (fellow gigger and buddy of mine) took to the stage to shake the hell out of a tambourine. (Only two people are allowed on stage at the King William IV, reducing the number of band nights considerably.)

Hot Fiction kept the room charged with their honest and heartfelt approach to live music, and even during technical difficulties the tunes rolled out and with such gusto that it would be hard not to like these guys. A thoroughly enjoyed night from a band that took their debut record and mixed it up to create fresher takes on their already contemporary approach to a classic sound, this band aren’t afraid to squeeze a crowd of their blues.

Hot Fiction are a UK based two piece garage blues and rock band, currently playing between London and Bristol. Click on this link to hear the whole Dark Room album streamed for free.
Everybody_is_Somebodys_Fool_Harry Pye
Everybody is Somebody’s Fool by Harry Pye.

It was a treat to review Harry Pye’s Values, story his latest solo exhibition at the Sartorial Contemporary Art gallery. Values is a much smaller exhibition than his last show Getting Better in 2009, malady which was a veritable visual feast of painting.

Friends_by Harry Pye
Friends by Harry Pye.

Values is entirely different; and using the smaller gallery downstairs Harry Pye is very cleverly treating us to a whoopie pie of a show (apparently cupcakes are so yesterday!) On entry to the gallery I was immediately drawn to Friends 2010, cialis 40mg a co-creation with Gordon Beswick. I got a super shiny press image of it but I also came across this image of Gordon Beswick blow drying Friends before taking it on the bus to Sartorial Contemporary Art, which I found far more appropriate because it is typical of the realness of Harry Pye’s paintings and it made me smile… (this isn’t just any blog, you lucky readers get the real stuff).

Gordon Beswick blow drying friends before taking it on the bus to sartorial
Gordon blow drying Friends in the kitchen.

The next painting I was drawn to was of Marcel, another co-creation, this time with Rowland Smith. Marcel is a humble fairy cobbler and life has taught him that sweet is the sleep of the working man. How poignant that a traditional artisan at work has been chosen to represent the pleasure in life when we have all but lost our shoemaking skills to industrial manufacture. The time when we again value the skills and products of the tradition artisan can not come around a moment too soon.

The Humble Cobbler by Harry Pye
The Humble Cobbler by Harry Pye.

I went round the exhibition twice so I could experience it properly as a multi sensory experience where everything is connected, and I recommend that you listen to Harry’s latest project, The Values, the band that Harry Pye has formed with fellow artists. The world that Harry Pye and friends create makes me feel happy and connected, even when the subject matter is sad.

No_Justice_Means_No_Peace_by Harry Pye
No Justice Means No Peace by Harry Pye.

On the bus on the way home I read the Rebel Magazine, the inhouse publication of the Sartorial Gallery which was launched to co-incide with the exhibition. It contains a free EP of tracks from The Values, whereupon I stumbled upon an updated version of the new ten commandments… they sound good to me!

1) FIGHT THE POWER (and support the little guy)
3) TRY AGAIN, FAIL AGAIN, FAIL BETTER (and remember that, “ridicule is nothing to be scared of”)
4) BE MORE CONCERNED WITH ACHIEVEMENT THAN RECOGNITION (Try and make a brilliant record like The Beatles did with Rubber Soul, Ian Dury did with New Boots & Panties, Mark E. Smith did with Extricate, or The Magnetic Fields did with 69 Songs… but just enjoy the praise rather than believe it.)
5) KEEP THINGS SIMPLE (Because when you get complicated you get sad. And when you get sad your luck goes.)
10) GO OUT THERE AND BE WONDERFUL (As Brother Marvin once put it, “We are all sensitive people with so much to give… Let’s get it on.”)

*oh look a number 8 turns into a smiley face, how apt* – ED

Our full listing for this exhibition can be found here. Make sure you get along before the end of the month.

Categories ,D+ Magazine, ,exhibition, ,Gordon Beswick, ,Harry Pye, ,Rebel magazine, ,Rowland Smith, ,Sartorial Contemporary Art, ,The Values

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