Amelia’s Magazine | Things to Make and Do with It hugs back

LuckyPDF is a new artist-led project based in Camberwell and Peckham, this web search South East London. LuckyPDF aims to promote and support new artists and creative talent within the area by finding innovative and effective ways to produce and exhibit work.

Recently taking up residence in the UNITY centre on the busy Peckham High Street, LuckyPDF will play host to a series of exhibitions, events and happenings over coming months, working within the restrictions of this unique space and around the other groups that share it.

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The current Exhibition features Molly Smyth’s Sculptures which tackle the difficult subject of fear in relation to the recent attacks in Mumbai. I asked her what initially inspired her;

“I originally wanted to create an overtly violent exhibition which highlights the horror of the terror attacks in Mumbai towards the end of last year. That’s however not what materialized. It became more to do with the fear involved.”

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An integral part of the show is a large piece entitled ‘Continuo’ which both propels the art to another level but also acts as an invasive field for the viewers.

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“It’s based on the the Basso Continuo rhythm within Baroque music which lies underneath the melody and both propels and holds back the music.”

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The exhibition continues tonight and tomorrow night @ UNITY, 39 Peckham High Street.

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The Norwegian artist Lise Bjorne Linnert has created a project in response to the tragic, viagra and ongoing situation in the Mexican border town of Juarez, discount which sits on the border of the USA. It is difficult to comprehend, sales but the statistics are chilling – over 560 women have been murdered, hundreds more have disappeared, their whereabouts forever unknown, but it is suspected that they have been kidnapped for trafficking.

Desconocida:Unknown has to date, traveled through 22 countries. The project is very much a participatory affair. Those who come to the exhibition are encouraged to become involved, and embroider two labels; one baring the name of one of the murdered women, and one with the simple word – ‘unknown’. These name tags are added onto a wall which becomes the central medium of the project. Until March 22nd, it will be showing at The Gallery at University for the Creative Arts Epsom. Here, visitors can embroider whilst watching a documentary about the situation, called Threading Voices, also made by the artist.

descondida4resized.jpgFrontera 450+, at the Station Museum of Contemporary Art, Houston Texas. A show dedicated to the women of Juarez and their situation. This inspired me to start the project. i had moved back to Norway at the time and I wanted to create a project that somehow diminished the distance, the physical distance to the place and the psychological distance to take in information of such difficult issues. I wanted to create a connection, because violence towards women is a global issue, happening in every society, rich or poor, far or near.The situation in Juarez is extremely complex and very difficult to describe using just a few words. But I think it is very important to share that despite the horror that still are happening and the increasing violence towards both men and women due to a war on drugs in the city, the women and the community I have seen and collaborated with is not a victimized community, it is a community of an enormous strength and ability to fight back and with a believe in change. Believe in change through working with the youth, education, support of the families so they can speak for themselves. It is all organized with the smallest means and in an environment of violence and mistrust. The government’s attempts on improvements are described by the activists as cosmetic.”

What inspired you to choose to have participants embroider the name of the murdered women onto the labels?

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” The idea of the embroidered nametags came after a long time researching and thinking. I wanted to use a female activity as a way to protest against the violence, I did not want to celebrate the violence. I wanted to establish a connection that would enable us to see the women and hear the stories told, see them as individuals. I also wanted an activity that had connections back to Mexico but yet were global, which embroidery is. We all have a relationship with names, it is the first thing we learn to write and by embroidering the names we would remember that name. By being embroidered, the mass of names each take on an identity again, a dual identity, that of the named and that of the embroiderer.”

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Other than the labels, have you been using any other art forms alongside the embroidery, and how to you feel that this compliments?

“The project has inspired me to work using different art forms. After visiting Juarez in 2007, I decided to go back to tell the story of Marisela Ortiz Rivera and the organization Nuestras Hijas de Regreso a Casa. I wanted to share the power and strength the women are fighting with and made the short documentary Threading Voices. When exhibiting the project I also show the video “Missing young women” by the Mexican filmmaker Lourdes Portillo. This film shares the stories about the murders, following the families in their search for their daughters and for justice.
For me it has been very important to show that women are not victims but have strength to fight back. During the openings of exhibitions where Desconocida has been shown, I have done a voice performance, Presence, where I give a tone, and then I give silence. I take away the words, the relation to music and this leaves the viewer and I with the purely the voice, the note and the silence, and I think this brings presence forward. There are “no escapes”
For the opening at the Gallery at the University for Creative Arts, Epsom, I made a sound installation based on my performance idea.”

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What has the response been to this project, and where would you like to see this project going (apart from bringing justice to these women, of course).

“The project has grown much larger than I imagined when I started this, it has almost taken on a life of its own. I have decided that as long as people want to be part embroidering and the situation in Juarez remains the same, the project will continue to run its course. I hope more venues would like to show the project and by this engage more communities. It is important for me though that the labels eventually do not end their journey in a drawer in my studio. I am currently researching different ideas of how to bring the labels back out to the communities where they have been created, and doing so through an action/performance in Ciudad Juarez.”
What do you do when even the charity shops turn their noses up at your second hand freebies? Have them stripped for parts just like you would your bike! Tracey Cliffe, find with a background in costume design, information pills knows exactly how to spin fresh dresses out of frocks non-grata. Check out her popping new boutique in Afflecks Place in Manchester.
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Polly Scattergood

Rough Trade

Saturday 28th Feb, approved 2009

The ethereal Polly Scattergood performed a short set at Rough Trade East on Saturday evening to a small but attentive crowd. Whether they had wandered in from hearing her sound or were hardened followers was difficult to determine, pharmacy but all were enthralled by what Scattergood had to offer.

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Scattergood is an open and candid storyteller with the adorable quirkiness of Kate Bush and the timid vulnerabilty of Bat for Lashes. Part vocal, part soliloquy, Scattergood‘s songs are honest and real. She was a little nervous on Saturday, resplendent in an metallic puffball number with slightly tousled blonde locks. Her vocals wavered, but it’s a bold move presenting your music in a space as stark as a record shop. There’s no production, no flashy lighting, and there are customers wandering aimlessly trying to find their would-be purchases.

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In between haunting melodies, Scattergood gave little away apart from song titles. From one track to another, she kept a rapid pace, backed by a three-piece band who spend far too much time looking in a mirror (I’d imagine). The songs are original, though – and her dulcet spoken tones blend smoothly with her powerful voice (she dips like a young Moyet and peaks like a more mature Goldfrapp). She has a fresh indie sound with a scrumptious catchy pop twang, best detected on the balladic Unforgiving Arms. Scattergood is also onto a winner with the short show’s closing track, Nitrogen Pink, born with a whisper and maddening as it reaches its climax.

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April sees Polly embark on a comprehensive tour around the UK, with the album Stateside Releases expected to hit the shops this week. With a nod, a huge smile and a timid curtsy, Polly‘s off, safe in the knowledge that she’s served up a teatime treat.
Aussie by heart, for sale New Yorker by nature, pills Deanne Cheuk is at the vanguard of her field in fashion illustration. Her work has already graced the pages of Nylon, ampoule Dazed and Confused,Vogue and Tokion.She is showered with accolades, recently she featured as one of the top “50 creative minds in the world” by Face Magazine.

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Cheuk’s utilises a myriad of mediums that beautifully unite to create ethereal and dreamy pieces.Whisking you away from the realms of reality into the fairy tale-esque utopia of Deanne’s mind. Like a trip to the realms of Willie Wonker’s chocolate factory her visions are inhabited by mushrooms and a whole spectrum of colours, rather reminiscent of hundreds and thousands ,yum!!!

I have to concede I am so utterly besotted by Deanne Cheuk that even the thought of approaching her made me blush. But I am pleased to say I shook off my anxieties and hunted down this astonishingly talented lady to squeeze in a quick chat!.

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1.What other artists inspire you?

I’m always inspired by what my friends are doing, artists like Chris Rubino, Rhys Lee, Dmote, Suitman, Rostarr, Jose Parla, photographers like Jason Nocito, Juliana Sohn, Coliena Rentmeester, Davi Russo

2. In the past few years you have worked more in fashion illustration, was this a natural progression?

Yes it was a natural progression, I started out with drawing the Mushroom Girls series, and then ended up getting commissioned to do variations on that style for fashion magazines and fashion brands. I don’t really do alot in the Mushroom Girls style anymore as it started to get copied alot and a really tacky shoe company on the West Coast ripped it off as their branding. I’ve been doing alot of textile prints for different designers including my favorite designer Sue Stemp.

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3. You published a book a few years ago entitled the Mushroom Girls Virus Book, is there any chance of this going back into press?

Unfortunately there isn’t much chance of my book getting re-printed. The embroidered covers were all hand glued and that was incredibly time consuming for the printers to put together, it took a long time to produce. Though, regardless of that, I’d be more interested in making a new book than revisiting something that was already out there.

4. Alot of your work features mushrooms, do you have a fungal fetish at all?

I’ve always absolutely loved the under-sides of mushrooms, how delicate, intricate and soft and unique that part is. I’m also fascinated by the incredible varieties of mushrooms and amazing colors that are found in nature – so yes there is some fetish there for sure!

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5. Alot of your work is multi-media based, what mediums do you usually use when you work?

I nearly always start with pencil and watercolor on paper and finish up in photoshop on the computer, I’m a bit of a perfectionist and like to be able to retouch and control the final image in that way.

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6. Are their any plans to publish any more books?

Yes, I have a bunch of ideas for a typography book, and an art book and some kids books.

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7. Have you been to any interesting exhibitions recently?

I went to the Works On Paper show in New York this week at the Park Avenue Armory, my work is all on paper so it was really inspiring to see . My favorites were old Warhol’s and Lichtenstein’s’.

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You get a awe-inspiring sense from Cheuk of her passion for design, ,not content in conquering merely the fashion sphere she has set her intentions further a field in the world of children’s literature and graphic design. I for one can’t wait to see how these ideas materialise!
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Going from a magazine to an online blog; we at Amelia’s Magazine know all about the wonders of the internet. However until an email from Mousse Magazine landed in my email box I had no idea how much the process has moved on. Although the magazine is printed in runs of 30, viagra sale 00 and available from museums and galleries across the world it’s also available to download entire issues (and back issues) online. The best bit is that it’s completely free!

Founded in 2006 and distributed internationally since 2008 Mousse Magazine is a bimonthly and bilingual, written in English and Italian, review “that contains essays, interviews, conversations, exclusive artists projects and columns by correspondents from the international art capitals.” They aim to, “surf the trends, offer in depth analysis meet with the hottest artists, and capture the latest currents and developments in the international scene.”

Eager to see whether I could give up the thrill of flicking through the glossy pages of an art magazine I downloaded Mousse straight from the website (no visit to the shop necessary!) and had a look.

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Ok so it doesn’t smell the same as a new printed magazine, but I was pleased to see that there were still lots of lovely images of art for me to treat my eyes to. These pictures are accompanied by over 100 pages of articles about big contemporary artists such as Phillip Lai and meaty interviews with people such as Peter Coffin. The only issue is that reading the magazine on Adobe Acrobat is a bit of a challenge if you don’t have a massive computer screen. But think about the trees you’ll be saving!

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Over the last three months, treat I’ve done a lot of traveling. I toured with a band for three weeks around America and Canada. I turned that band on to Deer Tick by playing “Art Isn’t Real” for them as we drove through Ohio. After the tour, mind I went to visit friends in Brighton, England, Scotland, and Wales. I listened to “Standing at the Threshold” on the train to Brighton. I woke up blissful on my best friend’s living room floor to the tune of “Ashamed” and I cried, listening to “These Old Shoes” the entire plane ride home from England back to New York. For three months I was continually barraged with new things, new cities, new friends, new sights, sounds, and tastes, with one constant – Deer Tick was with me the entire time. I had their album “ War Elephant” piping through my headphones, regardless of where I was. All of these facts I “forgot” to share with the boys of Deer Tick, seeing as how I’m a shy person, and slightly embarrassed about my ‘superfan’ status. I did, however, manage to find out a bit more when I nervously found myself face to face (to face to face – because there are four of them!) with the band at a Chinese food restaurant around the corner from Manhattan’s Bowery Ballroom, where they were about to play a headlining show, the first night of a 6 week tour around America.

Deer Tick had very humble beginnings,” explains John McCauley, Deer Tick‘s mustached front man. “A few years ago I started writing songs like this and recording them with my friend, Paul, on drums, and that kind of fizzled. I kept trying to create the band that I had named Deer Tick. It was kind of me for a while and I really didn’t like it that way. I didn’t like to be known as a singer songwriter with a moniker, I thought that was kind of stupid, but I was really patient and made sure I waited to find the right group of guys to play with.”

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John’s patience paid off and resulted in the formation of the band in its modern day incarnation: Dennis Ryan on drums, Andy Tobiassen- to whom James Felice refers as “the cute one”- on guitar, soft-spoken and self described “post-adolescent, geeky looking kid” Chris Ryan on base and of course, John himself is responsible for guitar and lead vocals as well as penning all of the group’s lyrics.

While “War Elephant” is the work Deer Tick is best known for at the moment, their upcoming album, “Born on Flag Day” will be the first that these 4 have played on together. “It sounds way different than War Elephant, and, stylistically, I think it’s much better than War Elephant too. War Elephant, to me, feels more like a greatest hits rather than an actual album, and this one feels like an album to me, and I’m really glad that I got to record it with a band, rather than multi-track mostly everything myself, which was the case with War Elephant.”

Deer Tick has received positive reactions to both their album, and their live shows. At the near sold out Bowery show, the crowd is singing along, and everyone I talk to in the crowd is genuinely excited to be there, indicative of Deer Tick‘s growing fan base. While the media is desperately trying to pigeonhole Deer Tick‘s sound (terms like “freak-folk,” indie-folk,” and “lo-fi” plague any literature you might find about them, as well as attempts to lump them in with other emerging Brooklyn bands, as John, originally from Providence, Rhode Island, is now living in Brooklyn) John insists that “We can fit in anywhere, from a dive bar to the Bowery Ballroom, like tonight. We’re not trying to be anything, I’m just writing songs in a variety of styles and they get pinned down as folk. And then you can’t just call anything done by a young person ‘folk’ anymore, you have to call it something stupid like “freak-folk.” I just don’t get a lot of labels that people give us. I like to think that rock and roll encompasses everything we do, and that’s where my heart is.”

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“Born on Flag Day” is scheduled for release in June 2009.

The world of neckwear has never looked so exciting. So say goodbye to the days of that tedious and generic tie lurking in the bottom of your wardrobe. I think as a general consensus every male has one, information pills right? Yes, sildenafil the one that only raises its ugly head for job interviews, weddings, or funerals. Well, cast that aside and end his tragic existence. Instead say hello and embrace the innovative, hopelessly stylish and nonchalant new accessory line from design collaborative Timo. Fashion Designer Timo Weiland originates from the bustling sidewalks of the Big Apple. He is no newcomer to the fashion sphere, having already enjoyed cult acclaim nationwide for his distinctive wallet designs and environmental conscious design ethos.

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Their kitsch Manhattan style exudes chic, and the brand have become regulars in hip fashion magazines such as Super Super. After the roaring success of the wallet designs ,Timo decided to set his sites higher and break into the broader world of accessories. Utilising a myriad of different fabrics from satin to cashmere the new AW O9 features beautiful and opulent neckwear.

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Weiland draws influence from all facets of design and genres. Reinvigorating class silhouettes from the bowtie to the skinny tie, and then racing up the spectrum to highly architectural draped collar pieces evoking a distinctly Elizabethan air. Then to top it all off he throws some traditional southern American western in for good measure.

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The unique feature of Timo’s designs is there ultimate use as a cross functional accessory. So that bland dress that hasn’t been out of solitary confinement for months could suddenly be unleased on the unsuspecting world with a whole new look.

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Weiland blurs the lines between gender with many unisex styles, so keep a close eye on that boyfriend of yours if you want to keep your bowtie to yourself!.
Prepare yourselves for quirky design group KIND! Injecting a healthy dose of cool to knitwear. The latest installment to their eccentric collections makes no exceptions fusing conceptual art with fashion, medicine in a burst of colour and activity.

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The Design collaborative are no newcomers to the knitwear sphere and have been in production since 2005. Each collection showcases new and innovative styles, continually pushing the boundaries in conceptual yet functional knitwear design. KIND have been avid followers of ours here at Amelia’s magazine and vis versa, we even featured them in issue 7 ( which is still available to get your mits on by the way!) We just can’t get enough of them, so I thought it important to unleash their new S/S collection on you. So prepare your eyes for a visual feast!

The new collection banishes all recollection of winter embracing the joyous arrival of summer with a myriad of warm colours and shapes.

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The brand are heavily involved in photography, interbreeding art with fashion is of paramount importance to these cool cats. Just one look at their S/S 09 lookbook validates this statement. Pieces are set against vivid tapestries reminiscent of the fundamental cubist painter Henri Matisse.

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KIND’s
focus is on functional and wearable clothing. The collection offers all your staples from dresses,tanks, to jumpers, all in lightweight cashmeres. So perfect for those cross seasonal periods, when its too cold for a t-shirt yet too warm for a jumper.

Kind has enjoyed universal success, having stocked their collections in Labour of Love, Tatty Divine, Liberty, Collette in Paris, UK style in Moscow, Isetan in Tokyo. Gosh its making me breathless just listing them all…….

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So keep your eyes open for KIND, I have a sneaking suspicion we haven’t seen the last from this eccentric bunch!
With a repertoire that boasts Blonde Redhead, page Stereolab, buy Pixies and the Cocteau Twins, approved 4AD rarely disappoint. The latest signing from the cult indie label, Kent four piece It Hugs Back, are no exception.

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Photo by Steve Double

Initially, you can’t help but notice how very young they all seem, which makes it all the more satisfying when they launch into such a mature set, cultivating a sound that is much older than their twenty three years.

Beautifully blended rhythmic guitars and soft Thurston Moore-esque vocals, they are clearly a group who have spent a lot of time cooped up in their bedrooms listening to shoegaze records. Although in essence, It Hugs Back are a product of their influences, this is not such a bad thing when your influences are so definably Sonic Youth, My Bloody Valentine, Yo La Tengo and potentially Wilco.

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Photo Coutesy of http://www.ithugsback.co.uk

Indeed, it’s their appreciation for music and sound that makes them so enjoyable and strangely refreshing. Clearly identifiable ‘Daydream Nation’ moments like in ‘Now and Again’ are juxtaposed with much more subtle melodies in tracks like ‘q’, where looped riffs and jangling guitars meet more industrial feedback sounds. In fact, many of the songs are indistinguishable, as they play with structure, breaking down more definable song narratives, so that the music remains continually listenable.

Definitely ones to watch.

‘Inside your Guitar’ is out on 6th April

Categories ,4AD, ,Blonde Redhead, ,Cocteau Twins, ,Daydream Nation, ,It hugs back, ,My Bloody Valentine, ,Pixies, ,Sonic Youth, ,Stereolab, ,Things to make and do, ,Yo La Tengo

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Amelia’s Magazine | Final Fantasy

The last time I saw Final Fantasy was in the tiny Spitz venue. Tonight he is playing to full capacity at the Scala; word has clearly spread and expectations are high. I am here on my own with only a monster coldsore for company. Prior to the gig I sit down at a table opposite a morose and unenthusiastic man in his mid-30s (that point where the unfulfilled of the gender start to become manically desperate) who is nevertheless keen to talk to me – his profession changes from writer on the blag to “actually I work at an internet company and I am a frustrated musician” at the drop of my job description. Not so worth trying to impress me, purchase buy eh?! I persuade him that Canadian impresario Owen, decease the man who is Final Fantasy, will be well worth watching. Post-set I am vindicated, but Mr. Morose is nowhere to be seen.

Owen takes to the stage with his inimitable banter in full flow, and proceeds to play his entire set on his lonesome, with just his trusted viola, a keyboard, and some looping mechanism (that I can’t hope to understand) for company. Oh, and a lovely young lady, who stands with her back to the crowd in front of an old fashioned projector that she proceeds to masterfully manipulate. Final Fantasy‘s music has been set to acetate drama, and the result is mesmerizing, even if I have to struggle to see the events unfold through the lighting rig that obscures my view on the top balcony.

Final Fantasy is on a one-man misson to coax as many sounds as he can possibly can from a viola, and in his looping hands this one instrument becomes a full orchestra, and the crowd loves it. There is even a lady at the front of the audience whose frantically waving hands can’t decide whether they are vogueing or conducting throughout the entire set. “Has anyone got any questions?” he asks at one point. “Any constructive criticism?” “No, I don’t normally do poppers!” he replies to the one query he gets. “Lesson learned, never talk to the audience!” Even when things go slightly pear-shaped with the looping business, which they inevitably do, he carries on in such a postive manner that no one minds. As the climax is reached and the star-crossed silhouette of lovers finally meet on the projection screen, Owen lifts his miniature partner into the air and they both stumble off stage. There will be a wave of enquiries into viola lessons across the capital shortly.

Categories ,Final Fantasy, ,Gig, ,Musician, ,Scala

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Amelia’s Magazine | Vivian Girls

Pop-Up Shop

14 Bacon Street, erectile E1 6LF, page 11th-18th December

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The pop-up shop does what it says on the tin, buy appears in a different location for a limited time, so you have to be quick to get in and see what’s inside. But make the effort as you can find a plethora of goodies from new designers and artists, hand picked from exotic locations all around the world. The store also supports the East End charity Kids Company, so you’ll be doing your bit to help as you shop.


Brick Lane Late Night Shopping

Thursday 11th December

Enjoy an evening of late-night shopping on London’s trendiest street, as well as rumageing through all that vintage, there will be refreshments on hand and special Christmas gifts available only on this night.

The Bizarre Bazaar

Sunday 21st December

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Monday 8th December
Joan as Policewoman, Thekla, capsule Bristol
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Ex-Antony and the Johnsons collaborator touring in support of her new album. Expect mesmerising vocals and heart-rending tunes.

Boss Hog, Luminaire, London
Jon Spencer (as in Blues Explosion) and his wife Cristina Martinez front this long-standing blues-rock outfit.

Tuesday 9th December

Kong, Buffalo Bar, London
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Art-noise, cool as Manchester band, heavy on the guitars.

The Miserable Rich, Wedgewood Rooms, Portsmouth
Folky, orchestrated Brighton group, with links to Lightspeed Champion.

Sixtoes, Big Chill House, London
Cinematic, spooky blues-folk with a melancholy Eastern European edge.

Wednesday 10th December

Little Death, Club Fandango @ 229, London
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Cool, cosmopolitan London band playing psychadelic tinged noise-pop.

Land of Talk, Water Rats, London
Canadian indie-rock.

Thursday 11th December

Good Books, Proud Galleries, London
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Danceable indie-electro.

Mike Bones, Old Blue Last, London
One man and his guitar.

Friday 12th December

Rose Elinor Dougall, Barfly, Cardiff
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Pretty girl music from this ex-Pipette. Still very pop but less of the sixties girl group rip-offs.

Free Fridays: Brute Chorus, La Shark, Josh Weller, 93 Feet East, London
Bonkers hair (Josh Weller) and outfits (La Shark) will abound at this FREE night featuring up-and-coming bands including Brute Chorus who will presumably play new single ‘She Was Always Cool’.

Saturday 13th December

Herman Dune, The Deaf Institute, Manchester
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Perennial Parisian folksters on tour to promote new album ‘Next Year in Zion’.

Glissando, Holy Trinity Church, Leeds
Dreamy and ethereal. Should be lovely in a church.

Sunday 14th December

King Khan and The Shrines, Hoxton Bar and Grill, London
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Wild soul stage show.

Stereolab, Black Box, Belfast
Long-standing lounge/electronic post-rock with female French singer.

Getting up at 6am on a cold Saturday morning may be unthinkable to some -but for myself and fellow fashion enthusiasts, information pills the Angels Vintage and Costume clothing sale was more than enough motivation for the long, look early trek over to Wembley….or so we thought. The queue turned out to be VERY long… a 3 to 4 hour wait we were told. Despite our earlier determination, it was too long for us and we gracefully admitted defeat, leaving behind a growing queue of seriously hardcore shoppers.

One of those hardcore shoppers was ameliasmagazine.com’s very own Music Editor, Prudence Ivey, here’s her take on it, “Leaving the house at 6.30am, we were in the queue by about 7.15am and, although in the first 500, we were nowhere near the front. Some people – vintage shop buyers – had been there since Friday afternoon. There was a really friendly atmosphere, you could tell these people were true vintage fiends, as there was not a scruffbag in sight, it was all red lipstick and glamourous outfits despite the ungodly hour.

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When we were allowed in, after just over an hour of wating, there was virtual silence and heads down as people rifled through the cardboard boxes packed with clothes on the floor. A cloud of dust filled the room after about 10 minutes, most of the clothes were in a bit of a state and everything I ended up with turned the water black when I put it in to hand-wash, not to mention my black snot… A quick sort through, try on and swapping session with my friend, along with some excellent packing meant that I left with 18 items of pretty decent, some of them really excellent, vintage finds for a measly £20. One of my favourite shopping trips EVER.” (above and below is Prudence modeling her two of her wonderful buys)

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So now I wish I had stayed in the queue – but my day was not wasted, I found a far more inviting alternative, which boasted the benefits of being a. inside and b. no queue! It was the first London edition of New York magazine BUST‘s Christmas Craftacular.

Set in the St. Aloysius Social Hall in Euston, a mixed group of cool crafty kids, cute guys and even grannies filled the aptly dated-yet-cozy bar, and the Shellac Sisters played classic retro tunes on their wind-up gramophone, which added to the kitsch atmosphere. Having taken off in New York over the last 4 years, the Craftacular event has now come to British shores and brings together craft sellers, knitting circles, badge making stations and of course, lots of cake!

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Tatty Divine turned into doctors for the day and set up their very own ‘craft clinic’ offering advice and tips to craft novices or lovers.

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An ArtYarn Guerilla Graffiti Knitting Crew even set up a training camp, where boys sat happily next to their teachers, learning how to knit one, pearl one and Random Monkey Designs offered lessons in cross stitch.

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With a packed out venue and buzzing crowd, it’s likely that (and we hope) the Craftacular event will become a regular date in the British calendar.

Monday Dec 8th
It seems most exhibition spaces in this area begin like this, drugs in someone’s flat. Every day this week at 79a Brick Lane, viagra 100mg there will be an exhibition of seven separate artists (one for each day) alongside a selected feature film, including the likes of Saturday Night Fever, North by Northwest, and The Truman Show. It starts at eight and ends when the film does. For a more detailed itinerary, check here. Admission is free.

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Tuesday Dec 9th
A Family in Disguise, by Yu Jinyoung has been extended at Union on Teesdale Street and is worth a look, if not only for the fact that entering the exhibition is a surreal experience in itself. Not a curator to be seen, and with a camera that links the room to their gallery in Ewer Street, you are alone in a haunting room with this disparate family of forlorn faces. Ring the buzzer and take a look.

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Wednesday Dec 10th
Indian Highway is the new exhibition starting today at the Serpentine, describing itself as a snapshot of the vibrant generations artists working across the country today, well-established artists shown besides lesser known practitioners. Using a array of medias they are threaded together with a common engagement with the social and political, examining complex issues in contemporary India such as environmentalism, religious sectarianism, globalisation, gender, sexuality and class. It runs until Feb 22nd.

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Thursday Dec 11th
Hermetic Seel is a new exhibition by Shane Bradford opening on Wednesday at the Vegas Gallery. It might just be satisfying to see fourteen historical art encyclopedias subjected to Bradford’s “post-Pollock” dipping technique.

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Friday Dec 12th

Here’s what one of our writers said of Omnifuss’ last exhibition: In the heart of Dalston, down the end of a small alley road was a large garage with a little door. Through this door, a group of 24 artists showcased their work. Sculpture, music, performance and photography took place in the old car workshop that was far away from the usual pristine white walls of gallery spaces and created a rustic, and inspiring location for this exhibition. With flame heaters to warm those tootsies, and the symphonious sound of a violinist haunting the open rooms, I found myself immersed in the eclectic furniture and art… Downstairs is their new exhibit, an exploration of domesticity in its rawest states through sound, sculpture, video and installation, and by the sounds of it is worth a visit.

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Saturday Dec 13th
Awopbopaloobop. Artists listen to music, everyone listens to music. Lyrics are etched into our minds whether we want them there or not, and we can’t help but allow them to inform our everyday. Awopbopaloobop (I just like saying that word) is an exhibition at http://www.transitiongallery.co.uk/index.html, asking a host of artists to produce based on a favourite song lyric. This exhibition is coming to an end, (21st of Dec), so go and see it if you haven’t already. The space itself is worth the trip, and it’s fun to walk around a gallery with a song-sheet in your hands!

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Brian Aldiss’ short story, drugSuper-Toys Last All Summer Long”, this to which the exhibition “Super-Toys” makes reference, abortion tells the story of a mother and her android son in the overcrowded world of the future who, however hard they try, cannot find a way to love each other. It makes love seem like a human malfunction, a flaw which can never be imitated. But moreover it captures the feeling of dismay when two people who know that they should love each other realise they can’t – that they fundamentally don’t know how. The android boy, who questions whether or not he is real, seems more humane than his human mother; who sends him to be repaired for the flaw from which she herself suffers. Love cannot be programmed; but is a lover not someone who says all those things that you want to hear, like an automated machine?

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So with high expectations of an exhibition dealing with the strange interaction between humans and machine, fantasy and reality, love and compromise; what I found was initially disappointing. The notions the story had alluded to, the emotions and the complexity of them, were not to be found. Machine ducks floating in a pond, a room of human shaped stuffed objects lying mundanely on the floor; flashing machines dancing in a square box; all interesting to look at, but lacking explanation. The most interesting part of the exhibition was the nightmarish, garish and lurid room that followed, full of toys ripped apart: toys with two head, toys mutilated and deformed by visitors, and all in the name of art. With shelves and window ledges packed already, I was invited to create my own monster from a pile of rejected toys. There was something sinister about being instructed to rip the head off a teddy bear; glue Barbie legs where paws should be; and to work at a designated workstation. Despite the visual pleasure and hands on aspect of super-toys, it seemed to be an exhibition full of concept without real content. But maybe that’s what it allows you to do; to explore you own memories of love, childhood, playfulness and ultimately rejection; and realise that everyone else feels the same way too.

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Anne Collier
Dispersion is a patchy affair. Curated by the director of the Chisenhale gallery Polly Staple, hospital it features seven artists working from different locations, view tied together under the banner of an examination of the ‘circulation of images in contemporary society….in our accelerated image economy’. This seems a fairly sound starting point, although a bit nebulous and too wide in the sense of the number of artists that could be described as grappling with these issues.

Recycling and colliding of images is examined most clearly in Anne Collier’s photographs. Iconic posters, complete with creases, walk the line between multiple realities; but unlike other work in the show, the centre of power lies not in some theoretical hinterland but in the jarring sensation between seeing the photograph of the image and the image itself. Again this is hardly a new idea but it is well executed. The twin set of images a box of photos of the sea provides a further layer of tension between the natural and man-made.

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Anne Collier

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Seth Price

Most of the the other works are films. Seth Price’s ‘Digital Video Effect:Editions‘ (2006) , juxtaposing high and low cultural references (such as those barriers still exist), feels like an early 90′s MTV insert in its scope and complexity. Mark Leckey, now with the epithet ‘Turner Prize Winner’, is due to give a one off lecture/live performance ‘Mark Leckey in the Long Tail‘ in January tackling the similar ground, hopefully to better effect.

A better example of the film work on display is Hito Steyerl’s fascinating ‘Lovely Andrea’ (2007). This is an engaging documentary-esque look at a Japanese bondage artist, cut with scenes fom Wonder Woman cartoons and ‘backstage’ footage of the creation or recreation of scenes, calling the whole film’s authenticity into question. This could have led to a horribly self reflexive pile of mush but is actually a taut and gripping set of mixed narratives.

Henrik Olesen’s computer printed images mounted on blackboards, ‘some gay-lesbian artists and/or artists relevant to homosocial culture V,VI.VII’(2007), a collection reappropriated around queer history, touched on interesting ideas; a collection of female portraits by female artists from Renaissance onwards, for example. But the sum of its parts felt lazy and, like the rest of the show, he veers into hectoring or frustrating silence instead of fostering conversation between the work and viewer.

This is a problem, but one the ICA can absorb better than other cultural centres. The institution was founded as an ‘adult playground’ and this remit naturally involves risky and challenging work, which sometimes works and sometimes doesn’t. Dispersion is a perfect encapsulation of this.

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The disjointed art punk of San Fransisco’s Deerhoof is pretty brilliant on record but I’d heard it was even better live and so couldn’t wait to see them at ULU on their only UK date this year. Their music is disarmingly simple sounding, online loved by music aficionados and 10 year old girls alike – my kid sister loves Panda Panda Panda and Milkman almost as much as any Girls Aloud single. Perhaps I should have sent her along to review the show. It would have been easier for her to convince the people on the door that she was called Prudence Ivey (the name I was under on the list) than a scruffy and definitely male reviewer. They thought I was a street-crazy.

Achieving such wide-ranging popularity is an impressive feat considering that, sick underneath that childlike simplicity, their songs consist of complex structures alongside fragments of dissonant guitar thrash/twang and improvisation. However, seeing Deerhoof is no overblown, intellectual chore. They manage to be simultaneously clever, loud and cartoonishly entertaining and enlivened ULU with a set that encompassed a lot of new album material alongside some stuff to keep the old school fans happy.

The crowd were particularly receptive to old favourite Milkman, along with the Yo La Tengo-in-a-parallel-universe sounds of new album Offend Maggie – a title that always gives me the mental image of an outraged, pre-dementia Margaret Thatcher. There were clipped drums ahoy, along with Deerhoof’s twinkling wire to fuzz guitar textures. Satomi’s vocals, all coy and Japanese, were accentuated by goofy hand gestures – a fitting accompaniment to her surreal and playful subject matter. The whole band were really tight and surprisingly enthusiastic after fourteen years playing together. I can’t wait to see them again.

For anyone wanting to brush up on their climate science, drugs I thoroughly recommend this charming animation by Leo Murray.
The friendly and clear narration takes you steadily through the various chemical processes that are happening on our planet in it’s present climatic state. Without being overly ominous, the film warns how these processes, unchanged for millions of years, are being disturbed by man-made CO2 emissions and may be heading towards a tipping point where we will be plummeted into a place of no return. This definitely ‘isn’t about polar bears anymore!’
I found it really helpful for clarifying some terminology, the science bits- told in a simple way- are up- to- date, and it projects a statement of encouragement, not one of doom. The prospects are scary but we’re lucky to be the generation who could prevent them from happening.
To vote for Wake Up Freak Out then Get a Grip in the Aniboom Awards 2008 click here.
For anyone wanting to brush up on their climate science, buy information pills I thoroughly recommend this snappy animation by Leo Murray.
The friendly and clear narration takes you steadily through the various chemical processes that are happening on our planet in it’s present climatic state. Without being overly ominous, the film warns how these processes, unchanged for millions of years, are being disturbed by man-made CO2 emissions and may be heading towards a tipping point where we will be plummeted into a place of no return.
I found it really helpful for clarifying some terminology, the science bits- told in a simple way- are up- to- date, and it projects a statement of encouragement, not one of doom. The prospects are scary but we’re lucky to be the generation who could prevent them from happening.
To vote for Wake Up Freak Out in Aniboom Awards 2008.
No Equal clothing are a company who don’t pander to press agendas and celebrities, sick instead they are refreshingly focused on working with new and exciting design talent and helping charities.
They also know how to throw a party – and it was good cause central. In the first room of The Russian Club Studios was a display of logoed t-shirts and hoodies, website like this made in collaboration with three emerging illustrators– Yann Le Bec, Thibaud Herem and Jean Jullien.

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10% of the sales – not just profit – of this No Equal apparel are being donated to three charities, which No Equal Clothing are supporting, Kidsco, Addaction and XLP. To mix up the mediums and give some background to the collaborations, there was also a video installation showing the three artists at work.

In the second room, as part of their desire to champion new designers, No Equal clothing held a silent auction (of which all profits go to Kidsco, Addaction and XLP) for the London College of Fashion. Seven of LCF’s undergraduate students working for the college’s Centre for Sustainable Fashion created collections that were environmentally and ethically conscious and these were being sold.
The auction is also a possible reason for the eclectic mixture of guests. East London kids hung out with men in suits (in separate groups obviously) in the sparse concrete venue created an unusual atmosphere, you could have been in an underground club, art gallery or exclusive couture shop.

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The students collections were varied and interesting, Michela Carraro (pictured below) used hemp based fabrics sourced from small family run businesses to create a romantic chiffon-esque collection, while Manon Flener created deconstructed / reconstructed garments made of pieces of fabric pieced together with studs. She says her motivation for the collection was to reduce waste in fashion; each piece can be put together in a different way to make many garments.

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Supporting the Fashioning the Future programme at LCF, which encourages designers to think about the environmental imapct of their work, No Equal clothing are actively championing eco-friendly designers of the future and with their own clothing label, bucking the greedy fashion trend by giving a percentage of profits to charity. Good work all round.
Last week the Earth team at Amelia’s Magazine went along to the Friends House in Euston to listen to a report made by the Public Interest Research Centre (PIRC). The issue was climate change and the information it uncovered was alarming.
As a self-confessed newbie to these sorts of events I must admit to harboring uneasiness about feeling out of place in a room full of swampys. But my silly preconceptions were immediately flattened.
Lead by a panel of speakers expert in their field, story the atmosphere at the Friends House was alive with people from all manner of backgrounds but united in the opinion that climate change is a matter of urgency.
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Chairing the debate was Christian Hunt who kicked off by asking the audience a few questions. 99% raised their hand when asked whether they would describe themselves as environmentalists. Roughly 70% would say they had some knowledge of climate change while roughly 20% would say they had lots of knowledge on the subject. 99% of us responded yes we did like his t-shirt that read ‘don’t give up.’
The first to speak from the panel was Kevin Anderson from the Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research. He started with a clear message: the question of climate change is a humanitarian one. While the U.K. and E.U’s definition of a dangerous climate change as 2°C per annum may be an adequate threshold for us in the western world, it is not nearly small enough to safeguard the rest of the world.
It is the southern hemisphere, containing the world’s poorest, that is targeted the most by global warming in it’s present state, with people dying on a daily basis. Therefore it is an ethical decision about how much we care about the world’s weakest as to how and when we go about dealing with the climate.
He went on to say that the entire climate change debate needs an urgent rethink when taking into account the latest emissions data. The planet is heating up at an even faster rate than we thought, and our government seems to be denying this is happening by following the miscalculated advice from the Stern Report and not pumping in nearly dosh needed to implement a strategy that will radically cut back our emissions.
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But Kevin Anderson pointed out there may be a silver lining to retrieve from the present economical situation. History has shown us that larger emission reductions occur when there is economic turmoil. I guess this has something to with cut backs in industry forced by a plummeting economy. When the Soviet Union collapsed, for example, there was a record drop of 5% per annum.

Tim Helweg-Larson, the director of Public Interest Research Centre bounded onto the platform next. So this is where it gets rather technical but don’t worry, Tim’s clear and straightforward delivery meant that even my mind didn’t drift into thinking about what I might eat for tea.
He showed us a series of images showing the levels of sea ice in the arctic in 1979 and in 2007 and I was taken back to those pretty pictures in my school science lab…Predictably the more recent images contained a much larger surface area of dark gloominess.
These dark regions absorb more heat. This additional heat penetrates 1500km inland across a plain of perma-frost. This stuff is harmless if left untouched but once melted, its carbon content-which is twice the amount of the entire global atmosphere-is released into the air. Yep that means even more bad stuff is added to the high intensity of CO2 that started this whole malarkey.
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The knock-on effect going on in the arctic-known as the triple melt- is steadily destroying the climatic state of the entire planet. Soon we will reach the point where we will no longer be within the realm of temperatures that enable things to grow and humanity to survive (known as the middle climate). If this isn’t scary enough this tipping point is likely to peak sooner than we thought; as early as 2011 to 2015.

George Momboit was next to speak. Hello. His exuberance for the cause was exciting…ooh la…did you know he has been shot at, shipwrecked and pronounced clinically dead? Well he was very much alive that evening as I listened – intently- to his practical, if ambitious, advice to the government to stop fannying about and introduce a ‘crash program of total energy replacement.’
He whizzed through a series of steps geared to cut our emissions by 20% by 2012 and more thereafter. But those wild curls, brisk demeanor and air of academic brilliance were just a little distracting. Without getting too carried away I managed to jot down the key points of this radical plan:
1. To train up a green army of builders that is equipped to build more energy efficient homes
2.A mass subsidy program to re insulate homes
3.Replacement of power plants
4.Re engineering of roads to cater better for cycles and coaches
5. To Cap number of landing spots for airports so that by 2030 the maximum number of flights is 5% of current levels.
6.Agriculture should be devoted to the most efficient carbon saving schemes
7.He summed up with the statement that lowering demand for fossil fuels should happen simultaneously with lowering their supply and we need to dramatically cut oil and gas exploitations.
Pretty rousing stuff…
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Solar energy pioneer, Jeremy Leggett gave us a more buisnessy slant on what can be done for climate change especially in this current state of economic upheaval and an encroaching energy crunch (the I.E.A. predicts 5 years time). With people becoming increasingly disheartened by the government’s spending priorities, now’s the time to duck in and make a collective effort to re-engineer capitalism. He enforced the notion that money needs to go into building a carbon army of workers that would create 10 thousand new jobs and…cost a measly half a billion squid

Caroline Lucas, MEP for South East England and Leader of the Green Party, disheartened by the inertia of our government, shocked us all by urging ‘a massive campaign of civil disobedience.’ This prompted uproar amongst the audience and I must say it felt pretty inspiring .She went on to talk about Climate Rush, an activist group who take their inspiration from the Suffragette movement. Like the women who were denied the vote, their rush on parliament really is a demand for life itself. They also dress-up in fancy Edwardian petticoats, which sounds fun. But their theatricality is not without sincerity, direction and a passion to change the injustices that climate change is causing on humanity. Caroline Lucas’ speech stirred an energetic drive to ‘do something’ in me. She reminded us of the words of Emily Pankhurst ‘to be a militant is to be a privilege’ and something hit home. We are very lucky to not be totally powerless in this situation, as so many people across the world are, and it is possible to make our government listen to us, albeit with a bit of hard work. To find about the next climate rush action click here.

So I’ve dipped my toe into the murky sludge of our current climate. All the facts and figures might not have filtered through into this article but I hope if, like me, you previously thought this issue was for only for really clever people and maybe just a little put off by dreadlocks, you’ve realized that this is something we should all be aware of whether we want to listen to it or not, including our government.
As I left the Climate Safety talk to cycle home, I felt almost grateful for never bothering to learn to drive as perhaps in a small way it might make up for that stomach-sinking feeling of how terribly selfish I had been for only vaguely paying attention to news of melting popsicles and greenhouses.
The truth is I felt safe in the view that the really scary things won’t happen for a very long time, well after I’m buried in the ground and used for compost. Well I was wrong, it’s not our grandkid’s grandkid that’s going to feel the full force of climate change-it’s us.
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We’ve searched online for hours to find these wonderful gift ideas for Christmas this year! Including solar powered fairy lights, advice recycled wrapping paper, rx sew-it-yourself dresses, fairtrade teddies and handmade jewellery.

JEWELLERY

Kate Slater
First up on our list, and featured in Issue 10 of Amelia’s Magazine, we have wonderfully talented illustrator Kate Slater. She is one of many artists currently selling her work on etsy in the form of these gorgeous little accessories that she has made. Kate‘s illustrations come alive through the use of collage, mixed papers and wire for relief work.
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Furtive Pheasant Brooch
Kate’s collaged pheasant has been remade into this lovely brooch. The original illustration has been printed onto durable shrink plastic and bejeweled with green diamantes. We love the idea of being able to wear Kate’s illustrations!
Buy the Furtive Pheasant Brooch here

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Flighty Pheasant EarringsThese gorgeous quirky earrings also from original illustrations by Kate, made in the same way the brooch (above).They measure 6.5cm from the tail to the head and 7cm from the tip of one wing to the other. These earring hooks are nickel free.
Buy the Flighty Pheasant Earrings here.

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Vegan Star Necklace
This cute necklace is made from recycled sterling silver, and the star is made of recycled copper. It is hand-stamped and perfect for all vegan stars!
Buy the Vegan Star Necklace here.

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Recycled Aluminium Eco Chick Pendant
Made from recycled lightweight aluminium and also hand stamped! The metal chain and clasp are all from ethical sources too.
Buy the Recycled Aluminium Eco Chick Pendant here.

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Golden Seduction Earrings by Amisha
Amisha is a new independent ethical jewellery label and we love these snake earrings made from gold plated recycled silver with blue sapphire eyes. All of Amisha’s jewellery is ethical and ten percent from each sale goes to the ‘Garden of Angels’ charity; a charity in Bahia in Northern Brazil set up to help with the pre-school care of poor children living in the Favellas.
Buy the Golden Seduction Earrings by Amisha here.

www.amisha.co.uk

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Large Cross Stitch Bicycle Badge
This lovely handmade cross stitch badge comes in four different colours (shown above). The button measures approx 2.5 inches across.
buy the Large Cross Stitch Bicycle Badge here.

LADIES

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Organic ‘Film Noir’ Knit Dress by Lovelina
Green is definitely the new black! Lovelina are currently selling their beautiful clothes though etsy.com and the ‘Film Noir’ Knit Dress is our particular favourite! Sweatshop-free and made from a blend of organic cotton and soybean, this wonderfully vintage inspired dress comes in many colours and makes a wonderful eco-Christmas Party dress!
Buy the ‘Film Noir’ Dress here.

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Butterfly Dress Kit
Gossypium is a great place to buy gifts from! All the clothes on their site are high quality, fairtrade and made from biodegradable materials. They’re one of the great sites working with the idea of a zero-impact on the environment, and we’ve love this Butterfly Dress Kit. It is a sew-it-yourself organic cotton kit that comes with a lovely printed fabric and easy instructions to create one of three garments. You can make a blouse, a dress or a smock with or without pockets, and have the option of long or short sleeves; with nine different styles to choose from you are in total control of how your finished product looks!
Buy the Butterfly Dress Kit here.

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Alpaca Fairtrade Slippers
These wonderfully warm fluffy slippers are the best way to keep your feet cosy this season. Handmade in Peru by a small co-operative, the local workers receive a high percentage of what you pay.
Buy the Alpaca Fairtrade Slippers here.

MEN

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Solar Helicopter
This little toy is perfect as a desk ornament, and is loads of fun for kids and grown ups! Working with as little light as from a desk lamp, the solar cells demonstrate how efficient modern eco technology is.
Buy the Solar Helicopter here.

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Fairtrade Low Cut Sneakers by Ethletic
These 100% Organic Cotton Shoes come with a tough rubber sole made form FSC certified Rubber (the FSC stamp is on every sole)
They come in different colours including black and white low cut, white low cut , and green high top too!
Buy the Etheletic Sneakers here.

The Hemp Trading Company
Runner up at the RE:Fashion Awards this year for their environmental work, THTC produces ethical, eco-friendly clothing featuring designs by renowned graphic artists. And until the 18th of December they’re taking 25% off all orders when you use the code ‘GREEN CHRISTMAS’! Below are three of their newest designs, made from 70% bamboo and %30 organic cotton.
For more information visit www.thtc.co.uk

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Men’s T-Shirt “All you can eat”
http://thtc.co.uk/shop.php?p=product_detail&id=290
womens version: http://thtc.co.uk/shop.php?p=product_detail&id=293

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Men’s T-Shirt “Evil Mac”
http://thtc.co.uk/shop.php?p=product_detail&id=288
womens version: http://thtc.co.uk/shop.php?p=product_detail&id=254

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Men’s T-Shirt “Fear Trade”
http://thtc.co.uk/shop.php?p=product_detail&id=289

HOMEWEAR

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Biome Christmas Crackers
These Eco-Seed Crackers from Biomelifestyle.com are perfect. The exterior is made from handmade seed paper– which contains wildflower seeds inside the paper that can be planted once you’re done with them! Inside you get an eco-tip, a paper christmas hat, and a small handmade gift. The little fairtrade gifts are made by a co-operative of women in Kathmandu out of chemical-free felt and include brooches, finger puppets and christmas decorations.
Order you own set of Biome Eco-Seed Crackers here.

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Outdoor Solar Powered Christmas Fairy Lights
These all-year-round lights are a great way to bring some green sparkle to your home! They’re waterproof and come with 8 different settings including flashing, continuous light patterns! The lights only come on when it’s dark (so about 3:30pm…) and the solar panel uses high grade Kyocera Solar cells that store enough energy to run for 10 hours, even on winter days! These lights are a bargain too at only £19.99!
Buy your Solar Powered Fairy Lights here.

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Recycled Wrapping Paper

These 100% recycled wrapping papers are by Lisa Jones and come in many different styles! They are modernist and brightly coloured using vegetable inks.
Get some Recycled Wrapping Paper here.

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Cardboard Cutting Table
This 100% Icelandic made brilliant cardboard table can be used as a meeting table, a cutting table (it comes with a laminated white surface top), a dinner table and a baby changing table! It’s portable and folds away to save space! (and comes with a handy 18% discount for design students!).
Buy the Cardboard Table here.

KIDS

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‘Woodsy The Owl’ Bib
This adorable bib is by etsy seller ‘cocoandmilkweed‘, consisting of Evan and Lila Maleah- a husband and wife team intent on creating lovely products for little and big people!
Woodsy has been handmade in a dark brown eco-felt that has been made from 100% recycled plastic bottles, and sewn onto a soft cotton woodgrain fabric. the entire bib has been backed with organic cotton flannel and lined with organic cotton and bamboo for extra absorption! All this detail has added to its appeal, and it even has a snap closure to make sure its little wearer isn’t able to yank it off!
Buy a ‘Woodsy The Owl’ bib here.

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Dala Horse Stocking
The Christmas tradition of stocking has been brought into the 21st century by Erin ‘sewsewsuckurtoe‘ by using the folk art inspired Dala Horse. It is constructed out of eco-felt which is made from recycled plastic bottles and lined in cotton to make it strong enought to hold as many things as possible!
Buy a Dala Horse Stocking here.

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Kenana Fairtrade Jungle Animal Teddies
(£16 each; Monkey, Zebra, Lion, Elephant and Leopard)
These cute fairtrade teddies are from a project which started in Njoro, Kenya in 1998 to provide income for women who were able to knit and spin wool. For more information about the project click here.
The teddies meet CE safety standards and about 11-12 inches long.
Buy a Kenana Fairtrade Jungle Animal here.
Amelia’s brother Sam Gregory is the Program Director of a human rights group Witness, viagra and this inspiring collective are front page YouTube news today, information pills in honour of the 60th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, with a video asking you what image or images have opened your eyes to human rights?

Witness are a group, based in New York, that use video and online technologies to expose human rights violations all over the world. By making videos of victim’s personal stories, they direct attention to injustice and promote public engagement and policy change.

Sam’s first up on the video (below), telling us that the images of a school teacher in East Burma hiding out in a forest with her children is one of the images that shows us we need to go further with our actions to help those whose human rights have been severely violated.
A video producer, trainer and human rights advocate, Sam’s videos have been screened at the US Congress, UK Houses of Parliament, The UN and in film festivals worldwide.

The group are also launching an online channel for these videos called The Hub. This is a new multi-lingual online portal dedicated to human rights media and action. It provides the opportunity for individuals, organizations, networks and groups around the world to bring their human rights stories and campaigns to global attention.

To find out more about Witness (www.witness.org) click here.
The non-existent morality faeries that do not sit either side of my head were in a fluster last Thursday. I took them down to a police auction in Bethnal Green, salve and for the entirety of my pedal there, they could not be resolved: surely there is something fundamentally wrong with capitalising on the lost and stolen goods of hapless victims, or worse still, liquidated assets, urgh! But then again, stolen … and retrieved; lost … and found. Where else would these items, long since departed from owners, go? I have nothing to say about liquidated assets, but apparently that’s next time – this week was reserved to lost and stolen goods only, courtesy of the metropolitan police; thanks.

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Once we arrived, debates were dispelled and there was nothing to fluster about – it did not seem in the least bit seedy. This fortnightly event, put on by Frank G. Bowen Ltd Auctioneers and Valuers, two men both of whom are very friendly, one of whom looks like Santa Clause, takes place in an old air raid shelter, making for a strangely intimate and cosy affair. Potential bidders arrive early to browse, an advisable precaution seeing as nothing can be returned once purchased. I felt like the passer-by who steps into a regulars-only pub, my obvious excitement an instant give-away; but I tried my best to look like this was routine, and nestled myself in amongst the clutter on Lot 135, 1 wooden kitchen-table chair. Pensive brow in place, I concentrated on my catalogue sheet, my mind now settling to the bewildering list before me …

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An initial glance reveals nothing of a surprise: bicycles, phones, cameras, and mp3 players; but it’s not long before you start to wonder … who steals a kitchen chair? A cupboard? An oak mirror overmantle (Lot 379)? The clothing list is the strangest of all: Lot 4: A pair of Ladies sandals, size 40; Lot 58: (non-specific) Ladies Clothing as bagged. One Lot contained a pair of jeans, a jacket, and a pair of trainers – all stolen from a single owner? How did that happen?

Against all inclinations, we ended up describing the place and the experience as a gem. Don’t go expecting to find vintage treasures, but there are amenities at a good price (surely I need a quad bike). And a few pointers: don’t let the excitement of bidding make you go for things for no other rational reason than the pleasure of raising your hand; careful of the man who will out-bid everyone for bikes; and don’t take a lunch break in the middle, thus missing that one item you’d circled in red that you were willing to spend forty quid on, and ended up going for under twenty, pah.

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Don’t miss this excellent event tonight:

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Cheshire Street Christmas Shopping

Friday 12th December

This Friday, case pop down to Cheshire Street as the whole street will be open to 10pm, cost so you can get your quirky Christmas gifts till late(ish) into the night and enjoy wine and nibbles while you do it. The shops will be offering exclusive discounts also, including 20% off on the night at I Dream of Wires. Amazing.

Frock Me! Vintage Fashion Fair
Sunday 14th December

Frock Me! vintage fashion should not be confused with the questionable television show of the same name hosted by a certain over-exposed designer and TV presenter. It is in fact a fabulous vintage fashion fair, and this Sunday, in the swanky surroundings of the Chelsea Town Hall you can pop down and pick up a genuine vintage garment.
They even have their own tea-room. What more could you want?

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Open: 11am – 5.30pm
Admission: £4 (students £2 with ID)
Nearest Tube: Sloane Square / South Kensington

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Christmas singles, diagnosis still the preserve of naff novelty acts, pill pop stars in trendy coats and X Factor winners, or newly fertile ground for acts that are unlikely to even get a sniff at the bottom of the charts? As the Top 40 becomes less and less of a barometer for success and following much-loved Christmas releases from the likes of Low and Sufjan Stevens, this year it seems that more and more indie bands are joining in on the act. But are any of them actually any good? And how to stop them seeming like lame commercial cash-ins in the style of the Christmas tunes of yore?

1. One way to quash accusations of rabid commercialism is to give your single away for free as Slow Club (see above) have done, with ‘Christmas TV’ offered as a free download in a spirit of seasonal goodwill to all mankind. A sweet little folk pop tune about travelling home for Christmas and snuggling in front of the Vicar of Dibley or some such, this is good for anyone feeling the pangs of seasonal separation. The boy/girl vocals chime prettily together in a song that has thematic echoes of ‘Driving Home For Christmas’.

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2. Stay true to your signature style. If you’re usually a grumpy old misery guts, Christmas is no time to suddenly become cheerful just for the hell of it so why not whack out a truly miserable Christmas EP a la Glasvegas? A Snowflake Fell (And It Felt Like A Kiss) is the one to pull out when your Dad forgot to turn the oven down, your mum’s sobbing into her charred potatoes and your granny’s being cantankerous.

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3. Restrict your mentions of the season to atmospherically wintery weather references a la The Leisure Society with their pretty waltz ‘Last of the Melting Snow’. Cinematic strings, romantic lyrics and a slightly more upbeat B-side in the form of ‘A Short Weekend Begins With Longing’. It’s available to download but it would be far more festive to buy one of the limited edition handmade copies in the spirit of wonky gingerbread men and glitter-glued everything.

There’s just one thing we’re a little bit worried about. Where are all the sleighbells???????

Now I know I sound like a purist, medicine but sometimes I wish Photoshop had never been invented. After seeing the ingenuity of the post-war artists featuring in Estorick’s ongoing exhibition, rx Cut & Paste: European Photomontage 1920-1945, I longed for the days when you could actually tell something had been done by hand. When skill was quantifiable – based on precision, patience and masterfully cut and mounted shapes; not down to your aptitude with adjustment layers, clipping masks and liquify tools. Of course these arguably require a well-honed set of digital skills within themselves, but Photoshop has cheapened photography to a certain extent. Unimaginably cool things can be done on it by anyone with a shard of creative impulse, so we can’t help but lose the eensiest bit of respect for the end product, no matter how groundbreaking this may be. Don’t you think?

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Regardless, this is a little gem of a show. Small – with only around 25 pieces – it looks at the modernist manipulation of photomontage (in which cut-out photographs and fragments of newsprint from illustrated journals were pasted into drawings and paintings) by the Cubists, Futurists and Dadaists. There’s also a healthy dose of angular Russian Constructivism in there, so for such a small exhibition, they have all the seminal art movements of the early 20th Century well and truly covered.
Developed towards the end of the First World War by the Dadaists in Berlin (the word ‘photomontage’ was taken from engineering and film editing practices) it was a way of making art with a new kind of conceptual clarity. And grit. It was powerful and playful – there is one untitled image of Hitler and a devilish-looking Churchill quaintly enjoying a cup of tea together – and mixed mediums in a way which made people stop and look. And they still have that affect today.

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All the works are beautifully balanced and composed. Italian Futurist Enrico Prampolini’s Broom (1922) is a punchy little piece with huge red circles and chunky text overlaid on a photo of a massive machine, while Gustav Klucis’ Spartakiada Moscow / All-Union Olympiad (1928) is packed with movement and angles so sharp you could cut your fingers on them.
Curated by Lutz Becker, Cut & Paste showcases work made almost a century ago, but which feels surprisingly fresh and modern. It’ll make you turn off your computer, pick up a pair of scissors and start attacking The Daily Mail like there’s no tomorrow. I think that’s always a good thing.
I’m not a person who wins things; Lady Luck is not my friend. Never has my name been picked from a raffle or hat, discount scratch cards always defeat me, and even when I tried to Derren Brown the ticket man at Walthamstow Dogs, “Look into my eyes, this is the winning ticket”, I still came away empty handed. So when my name was electronically selected for the Time Out Bus Tour, a heavily over-subscribed perk to First Thursdays, I was veritably excited.

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I’m not sure what I imagined, a day of musing amalgamated in something entirely inconceivable bearing reference to the Playbus and set firmly beyond the realm of reality. This is the description from which I fabricated: Each month, join leading curators, writers, academics and artists on a guided bus tour visiting a selection of First Thursdays Galleries; and that’s precisely what it was, but I couldn’t help feeling a little disappointed when I saw a very ordinary looking bus waiting outside Whitechapel Gallery, a bit health & safety and sanitised, OAP visit to Hastings anyone?

If you were in fact there for a guided bus tour with leading academics, curators, and artists, and not for a bus of dreams, then you’d probably be satisfied. Four selected galleries, a talk from a curator in each, and the wealth of information that only a guided tour can give, adding much more depth to your engagement with the work. My favourite part was a six-strong bowling team that unofficially tagged along, following the bus in a Transit, and innocuously joining the talks wearing matching blue team shirts, names on the breast. I did feel a pang of jealousy at the scores of people casually strolling between galleries on Vyner Street, drinks in hands, hmmms and ahhhs at the ready. I’ll opt for a home made bicycle tour next time, but that doesn’t mean I don’t recommend this.
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If you’re planning on going to any of these events, sale or have something you want to write an article about for the Earth Blog, email us: earth@ameliasmagazine.com!

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Now here’s a lovely story: One felt-making coffee morning in South London, three suburban mums discover a shared hoarding habit, a joy in rummaging through rubbish and a desire to make pretty things (with or without the use of felt). Out from the discarded chicken-shop boxes and begrudged lotto tickets emerged, not Oscar the Grouch (think Sesame Street) but The Skip Sisters.
These ladies really know how to make-do-and-mend, rescuing shabby bits and bobs found in skips and attics and revamping them into something truly lovely. 100% eco-friendly.
From now until Christmas Eve the Skip Sisters will be selling all sorts of treasures from the debris at 14 Northcross Road in East Dulwich. (Not open Mondays).
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Clocks made out of tins…found in a skip!
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Jewelry…found in a skip!
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Necklaces made with real human hands…found in a skip!

At 3am on the morning of the 7th of December two mini buses, thumb a 1960s fire engine and just over 50 cold, eager and very excited protesters turned up at a gate near the long stay car park of Stansted airport. Calmly and attentively we piled out of the mini buses and began to swarm around the entry point. A security vehicle happened to be passing just as we arrived, which instilled some nervous butterflies in our stomachs, but there was no stopping us. Once through the fence panel with our wire cutters we marched, as if to a temporary ark of safety (which we were to construct), two by two, carrying the tools and materials we were to need. Our objective was to reach the taxiway and setup a Harris fence enclosure around us to which we would lock-on to for as long as possible. After 6am, which was when the first flight was scheduled for take-off, every minute was to count as extremely important – directly stopping the release of ridiculous amounts of CO2 into the earth’s atmosphere.

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We were all so pleased to be doing something so direct; the feeling was one of pride in knowing that we were helping to facilitate discussions, raised levels of awareness, and aid to those directly suffering as a result of raised CO2 emissions in developing countries around the world. It really won’t be long before we are seriously suffering from our selfish actions, we need to look and focus on long-term rewards not short term ones. In reading the press coverage after the action I have been surprised to read a few comments by people who were disrupted – one man was quoted to say “Why couldn’t they have waited a few hours?” if we all adopt that approach where will we be left?
I will go on to strongly encourage non-violent direct action to be taken by as many of you reading this as possible, it feels so great to be there, in the heart of potential change, to be able to say “I have tried my hardest”. It is our future generation who will suffer, and personally I don’t want my children to be struggling as much as they will be if no “green” systematic changes occur.

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At The Climate Safety Talk delivered at Friends House, Euston, a few weeks ago I became scared – and directly inspired by that very fear to act, with others feeling the same way, as soon as I could, as this seems to have the most impact. I am newly accessing this level of climate science through living with some of the most inspiring women I have had the pleasure to meet and we discuss this issue of climate change daily, and innovatively focus most of our energy in the direction of raising awareness and creating social change methods and access points. Tamsin Omond lives upstairs and is helping to organize another suffragette style Climate Rush at Heathrow on Jan 12th, which I invite everyone to attend. Beth Stratford, Mel Evans, who spoke to the press after the Stansted protests, and Clemmie James from the Drax 29 also inhabit this eco-warrior house.
This action came as an opportunity for myself and others to not just discuss what is happening, but directly and physically respond, and gain immediate results – we stopped 86 flights from leaving the airport and acted as a catalyst for many many discussions.

Stansted has on average at least one flight leaving its runway every minute during working hours generating a shocking 4.2 tonnes of CO2 every single minute! Aviation is the fastest growing source of emissions and already contributes at least 13 per cent of the UK’s total climate impact. In October controversial plans for an expansion of Stansted Airport were given the go-ahead by the Government. Airport owner BAA wants to increase passenger numbers from 25 million to 35 million a year and flights leaving the airport from 241,000 to 264,000 a year. Objectors say an expansion would damage the environment, but some unions said the proposal could bring new jobs. Do we really need new jobs in this sector, should the Government not be pushing for new green jobs to go along with its emissions reduction target? The target that has been broadly accepted by many bodies including our own Government is that a rise in global average temperature of more than 2C above its preindustrial value must not be allowed. If this airport expansion is really given the go-ahead there will be very little chance of us being able to achieve the targets.
Aviation is the fastest growing cause of climate change and a major threat to the earth and everything living on it. But rather than reining the industry in and trying to reduce demand for flying, the government is promoting it through tax breaks and through its plans for massive expansion at our airports: the equivalent of a new Heathrow every five years!

Plane Stupid demands a fundamental rethink of the government’s 2003 Aviation White Paper which predicts that air travel will treble by 2030: an increase in annual plane journeys from 180 million to 501 million.

We, as Plane Stupid want to see airport expansion plans scrapped, and an end to short haul flights and aviation advertising.

Discussions and presentations are important, as the information and science needs to spread as far and wide, and touch as many people as possible, but we need to follow contact with this information with direct action as nothing else seems to be getting the results we need as soon as we need them. The Government has been making empty promises of reductions in the levels of CO2 emissions, and as nothing has happened yet we want to directly affect this ourselves.

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www.planestupid.com
It’s Saturday and everything at the Eco-Design Christmas Fair in the Old Truman Brewery, pilule Brick Lane, is daubed in gloominess. Thanks to the amazing British weather, the Christmas spirit is not in the air as greyness bears down through the skylights and umbrellas drip a murky trail behind each visitor. We all gravitate towards a stall selling mulled wine, but the smell – delicious at first – soon mixes with the sickly sweetness of organic soap and incense.

The fair, now in its fifth year, brings together designers whose work is centered on sustainability and kindness to the environment, the products on sale range from clothing, jewellery, toys and furniture to edible shoe polish.

The best find of the day is Finnish designer Minna Hepburn. Hepburn looks and sounds like she is channelling Claudia Schiffer, and is selling her leftover designs from London Fashion Week’s eco-sustainable show ,estethica. Her clothes, all creamy Scottish lace and organic or fair trade silk embellished with found brooches, buttons, outshine neighbouring designs. (pictured below)

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Around the relatively small space, recycled jewellery stalls clamour for attention. Rosie Weisencrantz‘s display is by far the most elegant; some of her work is even framed and mounted on the wall. (pictured below) Weisencrantz was a weaver for 25 years before becoming a jewellery designer, and her pieces hang on intricately woven string. She also likes to root around at markets and on ebay for antique brooches, which she transforms into one-off, textured necklaces.

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Using an altogether different approach, Kirsty Kirkpatrick buys enormous bags of old jewellery and spends hours sifting through, detangling chains and picking out gems, before reassembling them into new designs. She uses recycled materials too, making geometric necklaces from wine and biscuit boxes. Kirkpatrick has a quick smile and soft Scottish accent, and is obviously proud of her “anti-landfill” label. (pictured below)

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After Minna Hepburn, the rest of the clothing at the fair is a bit of a let down. T-shirts are in abundance, most sporting slogans and stencilled graphics like those by design collective Edge. (Their ethos: “We will make eco-fashion cool if it kills us”). (pictured below)

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Overall, there was far more here for the eco-jewellery enthusiast than anyone else.

Karolin Schnoor has contributed some illustrations to our upcoming Earth blog ‘Tipping Point’. We loved them so much we decided to make her our illustrator of the week! Her work is being featured in this week’s issue of TimeOut.

Below are a few examples of her work, here and a little bit about her!

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Reindeer Illustration (Part of a series of illustrations by Karolin appearing in TimeOut)

“I am originally from Germany and came over to London to study Illustration with a 5 month stint at a Parisian school in my third year. In my illustration work my main interest is narrative and characters and lately I have really enjoyed labouring over intricate folk-like patterns to contrast with my two-dimensional and quite simplistic drawing style.”

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A recent Christmas card design

“I used to play it quite safe when it came to colours, physician using mainly pencil and occassional bits of red until I had a tutorial in my first year and my tutor called out rather exasperatedly: “What is missing here is colour! Colour!!” Since then I have gone a bit overboard sometimes but I think I am feeling more comfortable with colour now.

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“Norwegian Wood” Illustration of the famous Beatles song
(screenprinted for Karolin’s degree show).

I was also rather obsessed with screenprinting at college and really miss it, but I think the process still informs the way I build my illustrations. At the moment I am freelancing, drawing, designing websites and I might be designing a book next year which I am very excited about.”

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‘Conversation’ a piece by Karolin for our blog!

Visit Karolin’s Website www.karolinschnoor.com, click here!

Monday Dec 15th

800feet is the new exhibition at sale 89490, see en.html”target=”_blank”>Space in Portsmouth, exhibiting the work of over 20 Portsmouth based artists, including painting, sculpture, photography, and film. Established in 1980 by graduates of the then Portsmouth Polytechnic, Art Space Portsmouth will soon celebrate 30 years of supporting, nurturing and retaining creative talent in the City.

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Tuesday Dec 16th

Museum 52 hosts a one-off festive grotto beginning today and running until Saturday the 20th. The grotto will pool in a breadth of work, with over 30 artists exhibiting unique hand-made works from tea-towels to comics, films, and scarves. A percentage of all profits will go to shelter.

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Wednesday Dec 17th
Lost in the Neutral Zone is an all day music and arts event. It runs between 2pm and 2am at the London and Brighton Pub on Queens Road in Peckham. There will be live music, spoken word, and zine stalls.

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Thursday Dec 18th

“The Greatest sleeptalker in recorded history?” I would not imagine such a category to exist; who I wonder, is the second greatest sleeptalker in recorded history. I pointed you in the direction of Seventeen last week, but that was before I knew about the happenings in the basement, which is why I’ll recommend you to go again. So Somniloquent leads you into a dark basement of low ceilings and cubbyholes, where you are invited to sit back and listen to the surreal world as incarnated by Dion Mcgregor. Bizarre narratives and entire worlds were conjured by this man, only to be forgotten upon awakening, until somebody finally decided to put a tape recorder to the purpose. It runs until the 24th of January.

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Friday Dec 19th

Head down to St Johns Church in Bethnal Green this Friday for Ghost, hosted by the Belfry Project and guest-curated by Sarah Sparkes and Ricarda Vidal, a spooky project that plays on the 1953 artwork by Marcel Duchamp entitled “A Guest + a Host = a Ghost”. The show will spread over the entire space, spilling from the cobwebbed dark alcoves of the belfry into the entrance hall, past the red velvet curtains and into the church. There will be performances, video, sound and scent installations, and later on, a program of artists’ films. Mulled wine and mince pies too!

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Every good Christmas dinner needs musical accompaniment, visit so while feasting with my housemates, I put Band Aid on pause for 4 minutes 46 seconds to have a listen to Veronica’s Veil by Fan Death.

According to the fountain of knowledge aka Wikipedia, ‘Fan death is a South Korean urban legend which states that an electric fan, if left running overnight in a closed room, can cause the death of those inside.’ Interesting… Whether this was the inspiration for the band name, I don’t know, but I do know that their tune, with its 70′s funky strings and Debbie Harry-esque vocal, mixed with 80′s synth beats, went down well in the party mix.

Our thoughts about the song were that, although it was fine accompaniment to our turkey and stuffing, it wasn’t a highly distinctive or original tune. As my housemate put it, “I’d dance to it if it was on in a club, if I was drunk, but I wouldn’t be bothered otherwise.”

I think she was being a harsh judge, although not groundbreaking, produced by club king Erol Alkan (who also provides a remix) Veronica’s Veil is a solid electro pop tune that interestingly merges the key sounds of my two favourite musical decades and deserves to be more than just background music.

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Monday 15th December

Ipso Facto, viagra HTRK, sildenafil This Tawdry Affair, capsule The Lexington, London
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Celebrate a goth Christmas headlined by bowlcutted eyeliner queens playing a weird and wonderful fusion of 60s and 80s guitar sounds in excellent monochrome outfits. Dark pop disco support.

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, The School, Mia Vigour, Hoxton Bar and Grill, London

Christmas party from dreamy whimsical pop gang who are releasing a Christmas single this year.

Jason McNiff, First Aid Kit, 12 Bar Club, London

Amazingly precocious folk support from Swedish sisters with a combined age of all of about 11. The video of them singing and strumming in the woods is just beautiful.

Tuesday 16th December

Comet Gain, The Pains of Being Pure At Heart, Liechtenstein, Old Blue Last, London
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Britpop stalwarts who’ve been around for at least a decade break out the indie, with support from up-and-coming, poppy Brooklynites TPOBPAH playing songs from their new album, out next Feb.

Fee Fie Foe Fum: Laura Marling, Mumford and Sons, Johnny Flynn, Jay J Pistolet, Peggy Sue and the Pirates, Cargo, London

New folk extravaganza with performances from as many up-and-coming and up-and-come young folk stars as you can fit in one room. Many of them are either featured in the new issue of the magazine (out now!), or have been featured in the past.

Wednesday 17th December

A Thompson Family Christmas, Royal Festival Hall, London

More of a loosely interpreted folk family than blood relations (although it does feature his mother Linda and sister Kami), Teddy Thompson has organised this extravaganza in aid of Amnesty International.

David Cronenburg’s Wife, Candythief, The Cedars, The Windmill, London

Fall-inspired anti-folk, with psych-grunge support from Candythief and bluegrass.

James Yorkston, Luminaire, London

Part of the Scottish Fence Collective that also includes King Creosote and spawned KT Tunstall.

Thursday 18th December

The Black Angels, ULU, London
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Fresh from their stint as Roky Erikson‘s backing band, this Texan quintet are bound to bring some warped Southern musical weirdness to ULU. Expect dark, driving stoner-rock sounds.

The Broken Family Band
, The Accidental, End of the Road @ Cargo, London

Whistful, unassuming country-tinged tunes with a sense of humour.

Duncan Lloyd, Screaming Tea Party, Old Blue Last, London

Maximo Park guitarist playing material from his new solo album with an early Graham Coxon jangly lo-fi feel. Screaming Tea Party also offer more of their bonkers but sweet pop tinged punk sounds.

Friday 19th December

Dead Pixels, Bar Academy, London
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Gloomy electro-pop with deadbeat female vocals.


Billy Childish
and the Musicians of the British Empire, Boston Arms, London

Garage punk favourite returns with a new band but most likely a reassuringly familiar lo-fi sound.

Folk Idol: Nancy Wallace, Eva Abraham, James Macdonald, Laurel Swift, Downstairs at the King’s Head, London

The rules say wear a beard and sing a classic folk song in this presumably much calmer take on the annual autumnal hell that is X Factor.

Saturday 20th December

Gogol Bordello, The Roundhouse, London.

Everyone, including Madonna’s, favourite gypsy punk band tend to play pretty explosive sets, often culminating in Eugene Hutz crowd-surfing on a drum and other scrape and bruise inducing antics.

Metronomy, The Scala, London

An ideal Saturday night gig. Dress up, go out and dance dance dance to these electro faves.

Sunday 21st December

Sensible Sundays @ Lock Tavern: The Wild Wolves, The Social, Helouisa, Lock Tavern, London
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The perfect end to the weekend/ beginning of real Christmas at this folky acoustic afternoon to evening. Look out for Helouisa, a uke-toting trio with the voices of angels, influenced by the likes of Emmy the Great and Peggy Sue and the Pirates. But then we would say that as the Luisa of their name is our very own art girl.

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Joan Wasser – Singer, find songwriter, and violinist, and seemingly omnipresent force in the New York indie scene. Starting her post-music-school career in the Damnbuilders, Those Bastard Souls and Black Beetle, she has since racked up a very impressive CV. In 1999 she became a ‘Johnson’, featuring on the Mercury winning ‘I am a Bird Now’, Anthony Hegarty being a dramatically positive and calming influence on her both personally and musically.

The mishmash of folk milling around the Empire typifies Joan’s broad appeal. Clearly her talent knows no boundaries or subcultures which can’t be won over, which creates a delicious mix of middle-aged couples, muso types and uber-trendy lesbians.

She commands the stage with her sultry New York sassiness, giggling at the irritating and oh-so British heckles that makes you wish you could sod off and see her properly in New York. The first few songs, although technically perfect, seem to be missing something until suddenly, the weighty silence that fell in the fist few bars of ‘To be Lonely’ hit. Effortlessly, she pours the melody into the piano keys, which melt with the words and take you to her world. In fact, Joan’s world is very much Joan’s music. As an artist she is intrinsically linked to her history, her story, and it’s the subjectivity of her music that makes her so appealing. One of the most exhaustive sets I have ever seen, she pretty much played her entire back catalogue, including ‘Eternal Flame’, ‘Christobel’ and incredible Elliot Smith tribute ‘We Don’t Own It’.

Joan breathes, bleeds, feels and loves. Her solo work is very much her new beginning and the performance has this wonderful amalgamation of an accomplished, qualified, and experienced musician with something so fresh, tender, and pure. She’ll make you laugh, cry and fall in love all at the same time.

This was an event for the lovers of fun, more about performance, website like this spectacle, fascination and interaction, and was it all of the above…oh yes, most definitely!
Decompression celebrates the reuniting and collaboration of like-minded artistic individuals who are familiar with Burning Man and/or No-Where festival(s). They refer to the gathering as a reunion. The on-site setup lasts a mere two days, but artists, performers and choreographers work for just over a month in preparation for this one night. Decompression, Burning Man and No-Where describe their holistic key principles as:
• Self-expression: The freedom to BE in a creative and liberating space.
• Radical self-reliance: YOU are responsible for YOURSELF.
• No commerce: Bring it because you can’t buy it, give it because you can.
• Leave no trace: Create something from nothing, and leave nothing behind.
• Participation: Get involved, this is not an event for spectators.

I haven’t attended Burning Man or No-Where, but what I’ve heard from those who have is always so positive and inspiring. The two events have been said to be life changing, and are also said to stay within the hearts of all participators for life. The key principles lay down the ideals held centrally by most successful communities, and I feel this is really the way we need to all begin living.
Within a community you have so much support, so much strength-brought from everybody’s unique sets of gathered and nurtured skills and their desire to share them, a sense of shared purpose and the ability to achieve great things through all of the above points collectively. Greenpeace have published an Energy (R)evolution report which talks of energy solutions coming from local opportunities at both a small and community scale. Their focus is on us all working together to produce a sustainable model of living, and I feel that these events inspired by Burning Man, and Burning man itself of course, are celebrated examples of what it is to be and function within that method of collective habitation, energy production (homemade solar panels and water purifiers being a common site within the festivals), food and waste management. Theses spaces, allowing a coming together of similarly focused creatives, also allow a lot of focused discussion around important topics, and being an important topic, sustainable models of living get spoken about a lot. These people are trying to break down the barriers between people and to re-focus energy on shared living, creativity and innovation.
Burning Man (Nevada desert, California), No-Where (The site is situated in the region of Aragon in northern Spain between Zaragoza and Lleida desert, Spain) and London Decompression are events linked through concept, predominantly focusing on shared experience and expression, with an overwhelmingly strong foundation of creativity. There is a leave no trace concept, which after a week of partying and artistic workshops in the middle of the desert with thousands of other people can, as you will imagine, takes a little time-combing every square foot-they are not happy to leave a single sequin!

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images from Genevive Lutkin-Burning Man 2007

I was working alongside three really good girl friends of mine to produce a recycled elephant sculpture, whose body acted as a tent and projector screen, and which offered an educational journey thought the mandala painting techniques originating from South India. Our elephant was exploring what you could create with rubbish, and how you could turn it into something beautiful, making people think about what they throw away. Wire coat-hangers, hanging baskets, stripped electrical wire and plastic milk bottles made up the body structure. The tent and 4 costumes were made from a few meters of bought fabric, but decorated with sections of old sari fabric we had been collecting for the last few years, the floor underneath the elephant was covered with saris, on which lay pots and pots of the brightest rangoli paint, 4 blackboards and lots of rangoli stencils.
Rangoli, also known as Alpana, Kolam and by other names is a traditional art of decorating courtyards and walls of Indian houses, places of worship and sometimes eating-places. The powder of white stone, lime, rice flour and other paste is used to draw intricate and ritual designs.
Although Rangoli art is Maharashtrian in origin, it has become quite popular all over the country. Each state of India has its own way of painting Rangoli. One characteristic of Rangolis is that it’s painted by commoners. On some special occasions like Diwali it is painted in every home, with or without formal training in Rangoli art. The art is
typically transferred from generation to generation and from friend to friend.

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images from Monique Gregson-Hampi, South India, 2005

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images supplied by Yolanda Yong-Decompression 2008

Sophie Rostas, of Café Cairo (a nomadic decorational and tea party troupe who put on beautiful nights at changing venues, since their South London site burnt down a few years ago) created a greatly entertaining performance based instillation called ‘Feast of Fools’, for which I aided her in costume making. The feast was held at a huge wooden table, constructed especially for the event, on which a dance was held, then a lavish feast of skipped food spread. A precession of fools in costume led an inquisitive crowd to the table. After a ballet performed by two beautiful dancers hatching our of eggs on the table, the performance began…an eager and excitable king sitting at the head of the table on a chair raised to be on-top of the table stomped a steady beat to which 8 dancers circled the table in rich, exquisite costume. The circling slowly declining from an orderly chair swap to hectic table clambering and mass interaction, not just with the other members of the dance, but with the onlookers, and as the order dropped the kings beat quickened pace, with him becoming more and more excited by the movement of his fools. It ended up with his passing out and being carried off the table, to return with a broom sweeping up the scraps of the feast a little later.

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images from Joie De Winter-Decompression 2008

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The Café Cairo nomadic troupe

The transformation for Decompression is quite incredible with its pace, transforming old railway arches, now used as car parks, into a rich artistic exploration. The artists can apply for funding directly from the organizers, who will try and cover up to 70% of their total spending on materials. This allows artists the freedom to work without being hindered by material costs, although a lot of the participating artists work with reclaimed materials, scavenged from here and there, the budget helps with necessities needed for the pieces. Imagine the space if you will…dark, large and cave like with each corner, section of the ceiling, large open space and doorway covered or filled with a different instillation, from huge art cars, costume camp, to water tanks for underwater ballet performances in gas masks, a tunnel of lust and love full of projections and erotic sounds, a photographer and his plush set awaiting visitors in extravagant and curious fancy dress in the corner of one room, a Drawing Booth by Interactive Instillation artist Joie De Winter and too many more instillations and art pieces to mention.
Joie’s Drawing Booth is a highly interactive performance based piece featuring set, concept, performance and makeup. It offers up an environment, which encourages social exploration through creative engagement. Rather than relying on the capturing of a moment and memory within a photo booth, she creates a richer version of this experience and celebrates the art of drawing as a social tool.

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image from Joie De Winter-Decompression 2008

If jewellery is your gift of choice this year, page thanks to the internet there is an abundance of quirky and beautiful necklaces etc to get your hands on. If you want to make your choice extra festive, order here are some places that have brought out exclusive Christmas pieces. Snap them up fast as last postage date to places in the UK is the 19th December.

Tatty Devine

Tatty Devine haven’t disappointed with this festive collection:

Flying Fawns Earrings
, abortion £36

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Parcel Bow Necklace, £33

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Parcel Bow Earrings, £33

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This Charming Girl

If you love to wear a necklace and have people admire it saying, “where did you get that from?” This is the place to go. Anyone would be very happy with a unique trinket from here, especially this seasonal necklace:


Ribbon Necklace
, £9

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Eclectic Eccentricity

Perfectly named, this charming online boutique has delicate and special items at very reasonable prices, including these gems:


Winging My Way back To You
, £16.00

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Dear Ones, £13.50

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Prick your Finger

Now, although not strictly jewellery, these had to be included as they’re the epitome of Christmas cuteness!

Naori Priestly‘s animal pin cushions, £19.99 each

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So go on, get the lady in your life a Christmas trinket she will treasure all year round.

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Wetdog thrive on the chaotic; their debut longplayer Enterprise Reversal is a head-spinning, web giddy joyride of layered chants, sick sharp guitars and thick, viagra 60mg reverb-laced bass lines, all pushing, shoving and fighting each other for room on each of the record’s 22 tracks. But amid all of the pandemonium, there is a strong, swaggering melody to keep things ticking over and entrancing, jabbering lyrics that verge on inaudible, but still deviously drag you ear-first into the commotion.

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Continually changing tempo from track to track, the record sways between the raucous and the slower, more sprawling thumps, but retains a definite style, neatly affixing the assortment of songs together as a whole. ‘8 Days’ swings between thudding bass and chanting multi-vocals and ‘Zah und Zaheet’ conjures up memories of Nirvana during the Bleach-era (if they had a yelling girl group in tow).

With most of the tracks never pushing past the 2 minute mark, Wetdog undoubtedly won’t be to everyone’s taste, but their strident and unabashed style and jumbled sound of The Slits stumbling over The Fall is certainly attention-grabbing and deserving of a listen.
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With unduly brilliant timing the Climate Change secretary Ed Miliband called for a Suffragette-type movement to push forward political change on the very same day as the Plane Stupid Stansted protest.

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“When you think about all the big historic movements, recipe from the suffragettes, physician to anti-apartheid, to sexual equality in the 1960s, all the big political movements had popular mobilisation,” said Miliband, quoted in the Guardian on December 8th. “Maybe it’s an odd thing for someone in government to say, but I just think there’s a real opportunity and a need here.” So, in the spirit of the Suffragettes we at Climate Rush thought it would be nice gesture to invite Ed Miliband and some of his governmental cohorts along to Dinner at Departures, at Heathrow on the 12th January at 7pm. (Terminal One, y’all) After all, shouldn’t he be supporting us?

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So, today I toddled off to Westminster to meet my fellow Climate Rushers with the aim of hand-delivering a few invites to our Dinner, which is, of course, open to all. Tamsin was instantly recognised by a ‘friendly bobby‘ who merrily told us that the last time he saw her was on the top of Parliament.

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Photocall with the Evening Standard done we headed off to Downing Street. Which was when we realised that hand delivering invites is clearly worthy of police intimidation; two coppers were soon tailing our every move.

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Maybe they felt it was a good use of tax payer’s money to capture the features of our youngest recruit, who delivered a festive invite for Gordon Brown. (why not invite them all?!)

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Next up was Ed Miliband himself, over at the Department of Energy and Climate Change. We weren’t allowed much further than reception, but had time to admire the big TV screen showing images of penguins and cute seals (endangered….. ahhhh) and oil rigs (hmmmm) I hope he gets his invite.

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On our way up to see Geoff Hoon over at the Department for Transport (who will make the final decision over whether the 3rd runway goes ahead) we passed a hair salon with an entirely appropriate name.

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For some reason the security guards seemed a bit wary of us, making sure that the door was firmly closed and bolted when we delivered the invite.

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Not so over at Defra, where environment secretary Hilary Benn‘s personal secretary came down to meet us in reception and accept the invite – she asked who she could rsvp to and we realised we hadn’t included an address – woops! Perhaps we weren’t quite expecting such personal attention.

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We have done our best to invite the people we think should come to our Dinner at Departures – the people who will ultimately decide whether a new runway goes ahead. Now it’s up to you to make your own statement about what you think should happen – join us, dress Edwardian, and bring food to share. More information can be found here and on facebook here.

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An example by Maria Sagun.

In collaboration with the Samaritans, visit photographer Hege Sæbjørnsen (herself a Samaritans volunteer) is organising the Affluenza Exhibition.

The aim of this project is to, sildenafilinspire debate and awareness about the destructive impact of consumer values on the emotional wellbeing of society.” Through the medium of art.

The exhibition will take place between 16th – 27th of March 2009 and currently there is a call for artists, so if you are any kind of visual or performing artist and think that you would find it a satisfactory challenge, here is the brief and requirements:


Affluenza

* Painful, contagious, socially transmitted condition of overload, debt, anxiety and waste resulting from the dogged pursuit of more.
* Placing a high value on money, possessions, appearances (physical and social) and fame, a failure to distinguish between what we need and what we want.

Consider that the excessive wealth seeking in consumerist nations lead to the unhappiness of its citizens and higher rates of emotional and mental distress.

The work

The exhibition is submission based with a solid panel of high profile judges including author and psychologist Oliver James, Jonathan Barnbrook (Barnbrook Design) and Michael Czerwinski (Design Museum) who will assess the work and decide on the final entries.

We encourage performance, sound pieces, sculpture, photography and broad based visual arts. Entrants are invited to submit a proposal for work to be completed or existing work.
We will need

* A brief biography/CV
* Artist statement
* Samples of work: CD or digital pdf is preferred, but we will accept up to 10 images, 35 mm slides. (Please include a self-addressed envelope if you need the work returned.)
* Proposal including dimensions and technical specifications

Submit your entry by 30th January 2009 for the chance to be included in the exhibition. To submit work contact Hege Sæbjørnsen on 07734944685 or e-mail
submissions@theaffluenzaexhibition.org

Last week I gave you a dummy’s guide to the Climate Safety Report.
Round Two of my wising-up to climate science took place at The Wellcome Trust in Euston. It was an event run by TippingPoint, web an organization that sets out to provide up-to-date climate science to artists who might then go off to create something influenced by the knowledge they have ingested and further inspire the people that see their work. The idea is to spread the word to different sectors of society so that collectively we can start coming up with solutions to solve the problem.
We were greeted with a laminated nametag and a cup of mild coffee to prepare us for the (ahem) 5-hour lecture ahead of us. Here’s what I learnt…
Dr Chris West, medical Director of the UK Climate Impact Programme, was a lovely bear of a man with a comforting voice. He eased us into what would become a scientifically complicated afternoon (zzz) with The Basics. Wonderful. I felt gently steered from point to point and a few ‘basics’ were magically made clear.
Ta-daa…I now know about The Greenhouse Effect: This is when the hot and cold energy in the atmosphere is out of balance and causes the temperature here on earth to rise. The reason why there is this unbalance is because we are emitting too many (hot) greenhouse gases to cool that can’t cool the (hot) radiation that hits us from the sun. There is nowhere for these hot gases to go so they form a stuffy enclosure of concentrated heat around us, just like Kew Gardens.
Higher temperatures cause sea levels to rise and weather patterns to change dramatically. The point to which this cannot continue the aftermath is the problem this afternoon of presentations hopes to explore…
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Anthony Costello, head of the Centre for International Health and Development at UCL, talked about the decrease in population of mountain marmots. Well sort of… he did say that it has been predicted 15-37% of species face extinction by 2050 as a direct result of climate change.
Climate change is ‘the global health problem of this century’. We know that Malaria transmissibility is set to increase significantly (hotter climate means more bugs to pass the disease about). Again he said that it is difficult to be certain how climate change will effect worldwide health but that research should focus on examining changing disease patterns, food security, human settlements and migration in relation to sea-level projections and hotter temperatures.
We then had a break and a chocolate biscuit or five. I perused the handouts tried to look insightful.
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Tim Lenton, professor of Earth System Science at the University of East Anglia, concentrated on this phenomenon of Tipping Points that had been bugging me. What are they and when do they occur? Well, in a nutshell, a tipping point is a point of no return. If we carry on heating up the planet, scientists predict that we will reach a point where we will go over our limits and enter a new climactic territory –the characteristics of which are uncertain but it’s not likely to be very habitable.
There seems to be some dispute as to whether there is one global tipping point that would lead to ‘runaway’ climate change or many tipping points dotted around the globe. But Tim Lenton was all about multiple tipping points (dirty bugger) that may work in a domino effect.
The Big Ones are the disintegration of arctic sea ice and the melt of the ice sheet in Greenland. Not forgetting the die back of the Amazon rainforest, the collapse of the Atlantic, the Indian monsoon… He summed up with saying that the tipping element is an inevitable component of the earth system and, with this is mind, we should be building future societies that are adaptive and resilient to climate tipping.

Diana Liverman, director of the Environmental Change Institute came on stage apologizing for being attached to her blackberry. She was in fact keeping tabs on the Climate Change Conference in Poznan. This is when a group of people from the U.N. sits around a table and work out how to cut back on global emissions. The 1997 Kyoto Agreement runs out in 2012 so plans are being made now for a new agreement to be decided in Copenhagen in 2009.
As we know, recent climate science calls for much deeper cuts. The proposed cuts are 50% worldwide and 80% in industrial countries, 20% in Europe and 80% in the U.K. The new agreement is set to include developing countries (China, India and Brazil) who have previously had no commitment, and of course the big bad U.S.A.
It is also intended to reform the Clean Development Mechanism (C.D.M), a system whereby developing countries reduce their emissions and developed countries reach their emission targets through joint activities. So far it hasn’t worked very well and there needs to be a big change in the way countries are dealing with/failing to deal with their emission targets. But habits are deep rooted, if we are going to combat global warming, there needs to be a major transformation of our social system.
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The question on everyone’s lips was ‘how?’ How do we create change on such a grand scale?
We had hoped that big natural disasters would prompt change but the U.S. government’s failure to do so when Hurricane Katrina hit has squashed that one. So now there’s more focus than ever on pushing for civil mobilization; if our government can’t do it, we can. The recession is seen also to change people’s attitudes. As we have evidence that our old ways are not necessarily working, there should be massive investment into new alternatives such as geo-engineering. The view that high emitting corporations should be attacked directly also got a few nods. Or, as one lady put it nicely, mass social change can be achieved through ‘experiment, extremity and engagement with people who are different. ‘

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Looking like some kind of fringed and straggled Clairol advert from advertiser hell, abortion Vivian Girls prove you don’t have to be all surly snarls to have total rock attitude. Coming on stage beaming at the audience, help making polite requests to the sound guys, visit the Girls proclaim their bad-ass status through their plentiful tattoos and their music rather than through embarrassing rock star posturing.

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Effortlessly cool, they launch into a blistering set, with flawless harmonies just about audible above their raucous guitars and tight drumming. There’s a surprisingly punk edge in the live set that’s not quite so apparent on the record and reveals something a little meatier behind the stock comparisons of Spector girl groups and shoegaze that constantly float around the band. Even the most pop number on the record, ‘Where Do You Run To’, has a heavy edge onstage and a Beach Boys cover is rendered almost unrecognisable by all the feedback, sung with the friendly insouciance of three girls who know they’re by far the coolest thing in the room.

A nice line in onstage banter, some audience participation via a telepathic transmission and an eagerness to mix with the plebs and join the party after the show, make Vivian Girls immensely likeable, which, combined with their brilliant music and engagingly dorky videos, makes me want to put their poster on my wall, their album on repeat and run away to Brooklyn so I can be their BFF.

Categories ,Indie, ,Live, ,Music, ,Vivian Girls

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Amelia’s Magazine | Frightened Rabbit @ 229

A worryingly bright room with the stench of fresh white paint known as the Nog Gallery was illustrator Marcus Oakley‘s chosen venue for the launch of his new book.

Framed art and canvases, order website like this none much larger than A4, were hung tightly together in a line around the room. This was a collection of work that made the book that we were there to drink our beers to.

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A colourful collection of trendy, childlike illustrations were bought to life by Oakley and his fat marker pen, HB pencil and a selection of coloured papers and paints. His work involved a mixture of typography, pattern making, still-lifes, houses and numerous quirky characters and animals such as the creepy bear (above).

Oakley’s work also involved portraits of more familiar (yet still rather creepy looking) characters including Fleetwood Mac, Simon and Garfunkel and Neil young. There was definitely a 1970′s air around the exhibition: bygone architecture, retro pot plants and large collared fashion. Oakley appears to be influenced by the aesthetic beauty of the decade’s architecture, fashion, graphics and typography. The subject matter and his taste in music may be a little old but his style of illustration is definitely contemporary.

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The Glasgow School of Art undergraduate fashion show has been an annual affair since the 1940s, viagra approved so it’s no surprise it has established a reputation for being dynamic and innovative. This year proved to be no different, more about with 40 students from second and third year showing 108 outfits.

The theme for this year’s show was ‘Avant-Garde’ and the students aimed to challenge mass-produced fashion to create exciting and daring one-off pieces.

The show opened with work from the second students, salve who showed one garment each, followed by the third year students who specialise in one of four areas of textile design – knit, weave, embroidery and print – to create a three garment collection.
Featuring fluorescent colours on neutral backgrounds, jewel bright colours from opposing ends of the colour wheel, layered tones and rich hues, this was a show saturated in colour. The voluminous shapes and intricate folding, tucking, draping and pleating showed guest lecturer Julian Roberts influence.

The designers cite inspiration from architecture, industrialism, Optical art and the glamour of 1940s screen sirens. One minute cubic shapes in knits and print evoked city skylines, and the next Surrealism and Romanticism took over as the models were transformed into Cottingley-esque fairies in light chiffons and appliquéd flowers.
Using a toned down palate of coffee tones in gold and cream, Natalie Graham created a collection of juxtapositions. Masculine tailoring challenged ideas of femininity while her choice of tough woven tweeds patterned with mechanical shapes was classic and sophisticated.

Stephanie Parr drew inspiration from dilapidated buildings, and used thermals with laser cut fluorescent fabrics. The layered train of one dress, lifted and lowered by the model like fabulous neon parrots tail, created endless shapes and movements.
Nautical stripes were toughened up in Ian Porters capes in which striped panels and red rubber panels seemed more like an apocalyptic day by the sea.
This was a bold and self-assured show that once again cemented Glasgow School of Arts reputation as the place to look for new talent.

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You can tell Armen Eloyan lives in Zurich. With claustrophobic cabin interiors, health sparse, snowy landscapes and a cast of animal – human hybrids: wolves, dogs and black cats, his paintings seem like stills from a half-remembered Mitteleuropean fairytale. Take ‘Man Dressed as Wolf’: a figure in a stove-pipe hat and a vulpine smile stalks amid the fir trees, on the way, you can only imagine, to eating someone’s grandma.

Eloyan inhabits much the same territory as the notoriously grim Chapman Brothers, but while their demented cartoon characters are drawn with a twee neatness that underlines their menace, Eloyan’s visions are smeared onto the canvas with splenetic vigour. Cartoon imagery is removed from the flat safety of the printed page; in ‘Bear and Dog’ a speech bubble emerges, filled with frenzied, illegible writing, while in ‘(Bunch of a Story) Tea Table’, the viscous substance oozing from the pot doesn’t look much like tea. Random details surface from the swirling depths of the paint: although you can’t quite work out what infests the outer reaches of the canvas, you can bet your life it’s nothing friendly.

It’s well known that modern anxieties about childhood and the American film industry have excised the darker content from children’s stories and folklore. In Eloyan’s nightmare-world, these dark and haunting subtexts burst through to the surface, creating queasy juxtapositions between the painterly, expressionist backdrops and the goofy-eyed figures therein. In short, Bookstore Cure celebrates the triumph of the macabre.

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After a guestlist mix-up that had me convinced I’d be attempting to review this gig from outside the venue, seek we finally get the green light and find the perfect perching spot for first support act Youthmovies as a heaving throng of expectant early arrivees go wild for this Oxford fivesome’s thrillingly complex riff attacks. They are also very keen on next act Esser and rightfully so, as the pint-sized ex-Ladyfuzz drummer kicks off an energetic and compelling performance by dramatically thrashing at a cymbal and snare. Along with frYars and Micachu, the quirky chap is currently one of the capital’s most innovative young songwriters as he caters in everything from dark, off-kilter pop to shimmering electronics, stripped-down hip-hop and frantic thrash, throwing in maracas, creepy piano samples, strings and cowbells along the way. ‘I Love You’ and ‘Headlock’ sound like hits in the making and as Esser tumbles off at the end of a thundering finale, kicking over drums and microphone stands in his path, he leaves us gagging for more.

However, it’s headliners Foals that really bring the house down tonight, rather unsurprisingly as before they are even on stage a real party atmosphere pervades the Astoria with pissed-up punters chanting the band’s name and excitedly lobbing glowsticks into the air. The extremely talented quintet commence an intense and perfectly executed set of tracks from debut ‘Antidotes’ with a brief warm-up as smoke fills the stage, blinding us with red and blue flashing lights before ‘The French Open’ surges into action, all discordant horns, juddering guitars and clattering percussion. Gone is the tight circle formation of old, replaced by an increasingly confident live outfit unafraid to own all of the space they are entitled to – Jimmy Smith manically thrashes at his guitar while Yannis Philippakis pirouettes, hops and skips around the stage gesticulating wildly from behind his microphone and even launching himself into the front row at one point to dance with the crowd.

‘Cassius’, ‘Balloons’, ‘Heavy Water’, ‘Hummer’, ‘Two Steps, Twice’ and ‘Electric Bloom’ all incite screams and hysterical flailing from audience members, however, it is nothing compared to the encore of ‘Mathletics’ which sees people grabbing at the frontman and guitarist, pulling them into the pit and hugging them, as growling basslines, twittering riffs and rhythms at breakneck speed erupt around the venue. Anyone worried that a move to stages of this size would detract from the power of the Foals live show should leave tonight feeling appeased. The band are now more adept at putting on awe-inspiring performances than they ever were…

After having met Chris – Yeasayer‘s front man – the other week, ailment he extended an invitation to watch the band’s final London gig at the ICA last night. So with a note to himself written as a reminder to submit my name, page we parted ways with a sincere promise of a catch up on the following Monday.

I’d heard nothing but good reviews from an eclectic selection of people, so I was anticipating whether Yeasayer would live up to my expectations. Rolling up to the venue early in the hopes of catching one of the super sized fig rolls that the ICA has to offer, we were met with “We’re still waiting for their guest list.” Man, all I wanted was one of those fig rolls, could I wait in the café? No. So I was relegated to the lobby to await the royal list.

Not only were we at the mercy of the bureaucracy that comes with guest lists, but also the sticky red tape of being at the ICA. In my frustration I wanted to shout at someone, to para-phrase CSS, to ‘suck my art’, bizzatch!! Despite being amused an hour earlier to observe the ‘art crowd’. But some dim sum and a lot of phone calls later, we skidded in just in time for the lights to come up on the four piece that is Yeasayer.

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I wondered how Yeasayer were going to translate onto a live stage; as they were the kind of band that I imagined to have a raggle taggle but Slick Rick type gypsy orchestra backing them up. So when the sound swelled (the sound at the ICA is amaaaaaazing darling…but not up toooo loud, it’s all very civilised up in there) I thought that it was all too good to be true. And then I realised, and was initially surprised, at how electronic and backed up they were. I was skeptical for about a minute, when it all began to make sense to me. Recorded, and on a romantic level, Yeasayer are a seemingly untamed wilderness of exotic sound; a whirling dervish of drums, vocals chanting with abandon and organic handclaps. Often, images of bare feet kicking up dust as they stomp and dance cross my mind when I listen to Yeasayer. But of course, on an intellectual level, I know that every sample, every wail and every drum stroke has been carefully executed with the pride and precision of a military operation. And on observing the live version of proceedings, it was clear that it was almost a Wizard of Oz type procedure, with live mixing as well as live instrumentation.

I was hanging out to hear Sunrise and they didn’t disappoint me, I was appeased. Yeasayer lived up to my expectations, and were well worth the trouble that I, and everyone on either side of me on the food chain, had to go through to get me there. I got what I went for: the urge to gyrate, throw my hands up, dance in a fashion that would clear a wide circle around me and, despite one of my pet hates being anyone who thinks that going barefoot is a cool idea (vagrants), I also felt like I wanted to chuck my shoes off for a stomping jamboree with Yeasayer. Fantastic.

The introductory song of Jesse Malin‘s On Your Sleeve set the scene of the album well: the scene of an episode of Baywatch. Thereafter, sick a procession of power ballads marched on with ‘vim, search vigour’ and all the originality of a victoria sponge. The influences that he claims to have were difficult to detect – despite my strain to do so. Tom Waits! The Ramones! Where? Where? The entire album seems to merge into one mediocre commingling of many an eighties epic, nurse deep-and-meaningful pop rock effort. It did give my colleague hot flushes upon hearing it – although I’m not sure whether or not that is necessarily a good thing. There are many songs on this album, fourteen in fact, and many of them are rather catchy, but none of them – not even Rodeo Town or his rendition of Walk On The Wild Side filled me with optimism for the singer’s future in music. I understand that he is not trying to be edgy, and is singing truly from the heart, but I still can’t imagine anyone wanting to listen to it who doesn’t already have the greatest hits of Lou Reed. In fact it left me wondering, does he wear beads? Is it ironic? Is it a pastiche? It could be a quiche for all I care.
Possibly due to its close proximity to the grand edifices of the University of London, website the private view of Erica Eyres‘ show at the Bloomsbury-based Rokeby Gallery had a distinctly scholarly air. Take my exchange with one clever-looking chap in square spectacles…

Chap: What do you do?
Me: I’m a writer (mostly of essays, so technically true).
Chap: I’m a lecturer of French and Russian.
Me: Gosh.
Chap: (Something incomprehensible in French)
Me: (long pause, tumbleweed passes, etc) Oui.

And all this intellectual stuff is kind of ironic because Eyres’ show is one of the strangely visceral you’ll see all year.

There are certain media that are probably only ever used by adolescent girls, and ballpoint pen and coloured pencil rank high among them. Lucian Freud won’t ever display a new series of works in Caran D’ache. Likewise, it’s improbable that Frank Auerbach will abandon oils for biros. They do not scream ‘This is Art’. Eyres, however, embraces the associations of these almost apologetically workaday media to produce some uncomfortably familiar representations of female identity.

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At first sight the Canadian-born Eyres’ drawings of ethereal waifs are the stuff of much contemporary fashion illustration. You know the thing: wispy fringes, big eyes, coyly downturned chins; a bit sixties, a bit Sara Moon, a bit nothing. You can practically see the Topshop labels on these girls’ smock dresses. But on closer inspection (and it really is closer inspection, Eyres is so clever that nothing jumps out at first), you see their features have been gently, lovingly, devastatingly manipulated. The blotches and craters of their skin have been unsparingly detailed, their incardinate lips are grotesquely downturned as if grimacing children; their low-slung jeans creep beneath the pubic bone. And the worst of it is: these pitiful girl-children don’t realize how absurd they appear. They pose for the viewer in the attitudes of provocation, intensifying the pathos to levels that are both heartbreaking and comedic.

As I edged towards the well-stocked bar following my woeful attempt to impress my Francophone friend (whom I spotted later that evening similarly intimidating the gallery director) it struck me: what’s Eyres’ work is about is our universal terror, despite all our pretences, and all our fancy clothes, of looking a little bit stupid.

After seeing this Arkansas trio perform the same live set for over two years now, website it’s disappointing to hear Beth Ditto informing us that they will not be playing new material when she strolls out to three levels full of expectant faces in a packed-to-bursting Shepherd’s Bush Empire. The iconic vocalist looks as striking as ever tonight in a combination of figure-hugging, store shimmering green dress, huge bouffant hair with dangling crimped ringlets and dramatic black eye make-up – an outfit conjuring up the spirit of Hairspray’s Tracy Turnblad. She hitches the frock up completely during blistering opener ‘Eyes Open’ before the band treat us to fiery versions of ‘Yr Mangled Heart’, ‘Coal To Diamonds’, ‘Yesterday’s News’ and ‘Fire/Sign’.

Gossip have toured their essential breakthrough fourth album to death – so it’s no surprise that on occasion these songs have less energy than when they first unleashed them on a hungry UK audience in 2006 – but what makes this act so special is that even when they’re not firing on all four cylinders, they still knock the socks off their peers performance-wise. Ditto roars, shrieks and shakes along manically to drummer Hannah Blilie’s thundering rhythms and engages in witty banter between songs while fashionably speccy guitarist Brace Paine gives the frequently-photographed frontwoman a run for her money in the stage-owning stakes, creeping, crouching and hopping from one foot to the other while dishing out bluesy, attacking riffs and squalling solos. The outfit also pay tribute to some of music’s most influential females as Ditto sings snatches of X-Ray Specs songs and quotes Nina Simone before unleashing their famously sultry version of Aaliyah‘s ‘Are You That Somebody?’.

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These references seem to be lost on the audience, however, the majority of whom are only interested in hearing that Skins song, an advertising campaign responsible for transforming Gossip from a cult act into a mainstream proposition last year. In fact, they barely pay attention to the first airing of infectious electronic-tinged newie ‘Eighth Wonder’ – complete with pulsing beats and samplers – and dance half-heartedly to the first encore of ‘Listen Up’, before the familiar opening thrash of ‘Standing In The Way Of Control’ kicks in, its pulsing bassline sending shivers down spines and sending the Empire into a frenzy. Suddenly Ditto is nowhere to be seen, enveloped by the crowd as she pulls hundreds of people over the barrier to dance with the band. They swarm the stage and flail around wildly, providing a spectacular visual finale to a show which, despite its intermittent failings, still packs a well-placed punch in the belly of modern music.
Here at Amelia’s Magazine we tend to grace scruffy east London galleries in the company of a trendy gathering with our presence. The private view of Andy Hill‘s West End exhibition was somewhat out of our comfort zone; there was no gathering of young scruffy trendies at The Coningsby Gallery but rather a lot of middle aged, ed well dressed business folk. No sign of cheap beer and coke here, cialis 40mg instead a selection of fine wines!

Andy Hill has been working in design and advertising for the last 25 years and is now, in his first exhibition named “If I couldn’t draw”, showing off his other creative talents of drawing and painting. He insists drawing and painting keeps him sane in his cutthroat day job.
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All three storeys of the gallery were used to exhibit Hill’s work. On the ground floor hung large painted canvases entitled ‘Elements of the Universe’, inspired by climate change issues. These apparent poetic justice of nature are inspired by the lack of care for the environment and are suppose to make us think twice. These were skilled paintings showing powerful stormy seas and skies, however not powerful enough to make me think about them, let alone think twice. And to be frank, I wouldn’t really look twice at them either. Does anybody actually read this? These paintings were oddly accompanied by framed charcoal nudes, which reminded me of life drawing classes at art foundation; amateur and unimpressive.

A pleasant exhibition yet nothing special. Hill obviously has the ability to be draw, as most creatives do, but maybe not the strength to be an artist. One expects to come away from an exhibition impressed, excited and inspired but I left Hill’s preview night feeling none of these, although I was slightly impressed with the gallery’s personalised toilet seat.

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Bow ties, viagra top hats and a plethora of impressively coiffured dainties with big bows on their shiny shoes made the ideal crowd for the exhibition of illustration at La Viande 3 Charlotte Rd, buy EC2. Whimsical and witty, the lengthy titled “an exhibition of juvenile, idiosyncratic witticisms from 4 nice people….” by artists and illustrators Ryan Todd, Jess Wilson, Chris Jones and Rob Flowers was playful to the core.

On our arrival (early) at La Viande we were pleased to discover that we were by no means the first to arrive, (although definitely the scruffiest!) and within a short time the gallery and street were packed. The colourful audience and the mood were fittingly light and jovial for the work on the walls.

Traditional ideas of love and romance were cheered, jeered, poked about a bit and eventually applauded by this exhibition from talents Todd, Wilson, Jones and Flowers . A refreshing combination of biro drawing, painting, sculpture and print were on display and neatly filled the small but welcoming gallery space. As I meandered around the gallery I was impressed by not only the high quality of the work but by the overall coherency of the exhibition. The artists, working across a range of disciplines maintained a strong sense of unity despite differing styles of application.

When I walked into the room, the first work to draw my attention was the Disney-eyed sculpture of Rob Flowers. Round, black, furry heads in stacks or clusters reminded me of the oversized stuffed toys found in rich children’s bedrooms in 1970′s films (in technicolour). Seemingly friendly but seriously creepy, these toy-like sculptures would have been the thing of nightmares to a small child, especially when given a tiny, plastic human nose and a tall clowns hat….eek. His work was centrally situated on the first and basement floor and created a bold presence beside the more subtle drawings on the walls.
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I had difficulty suppressing a smile at Jess Wilson’s series of prints based on two little grannies sitting together on a bench found downstairs in the gallery. From “ I love you” to insults, the evolution of love, intimacy and relationship was summed up in a cute and clever way. “Every night my cat falls in love” was one of the endearing phrases drawn in biro in Wilson’s series of pine panel drawings. I was instantly drawn to the scratchy and immediate blue biro line, friendly and familiar, reminding me of childhood drawing sessions on my bed head before getting told off for vandalism. It was interesting to see the often throw-away biro drawing given the physical weight of the wooden surface- instilling a sense of permanence and preciousness.

I was really excited to see that painting was well represented in the exhibition thanks to Cris Jones. His striking pieces reminded me of panel paintings in technique and were heart wrenchingly funny . A little naked lady, falling to her doom from a burst heart balloon while her joy-of-sex lover desperately clings to the edge of the basket entitled “don’t leave me”. It killed me. The downstairs wall was a salon hang of fantastic paper works by Ryan Todd. The impressive array of small drawings in biro, felt tip and ink drawings hung in a colourful cluster across the wall. Imagery mashed together ranged from headless skeletons to strange faces with love heart eyes and spooky grins. ¬¬Each image felt as though it were part of a narrative that had been broken into pieces and reformed on the wall and in a strange way, I felt that Todd’s work really summed up the exhibition. It was light but clever and ultimately endearing.

The exhibition was fun and sweet but definitely meaty enough for La Viande. To find out more about the artists check out
www.jesswilson.co.uk,
www.ryantodd.co.uk,
www.robflowers.co.uk,
www.myspace.com/jonesmr
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John Currin’s paintings are the art worlds equivalent of the strip club in Flash Dance. Sexually charged, order possibly debauched, medications visually seductive but pretty harmless. This new collection of paintings can be found at Sadie Coles and is a striking in both style and content.
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Firstly, I have to admit to being a John Currin fan and had been eagerly anticipating the exhibition. I had arranged to meet a friend/ fellow painting graduate (also a Currin fan) and we were both pretty excited about seeing the show. Rupert and I ran up the escalators at Bond Street with enthusiasm usually contributed to the promise of free wine, threw our a-z to the wind in and promptly got lost amidst the splendor of Mayfair. Some time later we eventually found ourselves squeezing into the packed new Sadie Coles gallery. The smartly dressed crowd was intermixed with familiar faces from the Glasgow School of Art and familiar faces of a different kind…but more of that later.

The exhibition of new works by Americas leading figurative painter is a departure from his usual soft core, eye candy imagery to an ultimately explicit exploration of eroticism. Where as past works hinted at sex or were lightly sexual in tone, this new collection leaves no question, yip , she’s being doubled teamed.
The erotic embraces leave nothing to the imagination however the sex depicted is not hard, challenging or threatening as is often found in contemporary art but highly attractive and seductive, like a French porn film from the 70s. The characters were round and fleshy, with strange wispy fair hair that reminded me of Otto Dix’s “Madchen auf Fell” lush and intensely labored, as if every hair had been individually painted. Amidst the cocks and vulvas were some amazing details, intricately painted gold necklaces, hyper-realistic soft furnishings and luxurious interiors all draped in a soft, honeyed light.
A reworking of Ophelia with a curious Currin-character as the reclining nude, delicately intertwining a long string of pearls in her unearthly pale hands revealed Currin’s skill as a painter. The pearls were handled such precision that I had to look closely to be sure that they had not been stuck on!

The basement floor offered a slightly more sedate but equally wonderful collection of etchings. His signature style of contemporary caricatured directly referenced famous classical paintings, but with currin-esque females implanted to play the leading roles. Christ as a strange doe-eyed blonde was witty and striking. A smallish canvas of roses in reds, pinks and soft sky blues, similar to something you might find in a middle-class suburban home contradicted the paintings on the first floor but neatly tied in with the exhibition as a whole. The brushy, fleshy painting of roses led smoothly on to the large-scale paintings of intimate sex scenes, the soft pinks and peaches used in the petals and the clitorises. This humorous link added to the overall atmosphere of domesticity versus sexual splendor.

Attending the opening alongside the artists and suited gallery-goers was a splattering of famous faces. Having only recently left glasgow where celebrity is non-existent, this was almost as exciting as seeing the new collection. Okay, well honestly, a lot more exciting! I froze, realising that I was standing shoulder to shoulder with the king of British foppishness and stuttering twittishnes, Hugh Grant. Alongside Hugh, were the pet shop boys, Lucien Freud and the aging high priest of rock and roll, Mr Mick Jagger. Inspired by the free beer I had consumed I was about to ask their opinions on the paintings for the blog…. So Hugh, what is your opinion of this vulva? Luckily, Rupert suggested this was not the best idea, I guess thats what friends are for!
I’m a huge sucker for electro. I mean real breakdancing-on-lino-in-the-middle-of-Wood-Green-shopping-centre-in-1983-to-the-sounds-of-Hashim’s-Al-Naafiysh-style electro. So I was highly excited when the new album from Bumblebeez began with more horn stabs, approved computerised blasts and turntable scratches than all 10 volumes of the Streetsounds Electro compilations.

Bumblebeez are a brother-sister duo from Australia, pharm Pia Colonna performing vocal duties, advice with brother Chris Colonna handling both vocals and spearheading production.

Confounding my immediate expectations the first proper track Black Dirt is a combination of lolloping indie hiphop beats with brother Colonna shouting through a distortion pedal about the dirt in his mind. In all honesty it’s pretty annoying. Big phat 808 sub-bass pulses layered under heavy kick drums is what I was expecting, and Clubb Clubb dutifully obliges on that front, Miami Bass beats and rousing synths storming along accompanied by perfectly able raps from Pia, The Sister of Ill. It is somewhat contrived, but certain to fill a drunken dancefloor.

I will say the album does work by being brightly multicoloured and altering music style track by track, however Colonna proves himself to be a slightly uninspired musical thief. There’s no interesting, off the wall styles being plundered, it’s all a bit safe, and while there’s nothing wrong with switching styles wildly throughout the album (the Beasties’ Ill Communication being a perfect comparison point), there is when it serves to destroy any sense of cohesion.

If I were being overly cynical, I’d say that some of the mini-tracks were included specifically to gain PRS revenue from television. In fact the lack of cohesion between tracks as a whole lends to this idea even more. Rather than evoking a childlike eclecticism, the changes in style make the album seem more like a catalogue of background music designed for advertising agencies marketing to Generation-Y. A bit of faux New-Wave here, a bit of P-Funk there, but overall there’s no genius production style to keep it all defined, to give it the identity for which it sorely begs.

There’s no doubt that it’s fun, and the more dancefloor based tracks such as the aforementioned Clubb Clubb, and the mid-tempo electronic groove of Rio (which successfully echoes Homework-era Daft Punk) really do work very well. Hopefully they’ll be released as singles and get even more effective remix treatments, as there’s plenty of energy here to be exploited by furtive producers.

There seems very little to engage, tracks sometimes seeming to have been specifically designed to accompany a visual medium. There are a few standout tracks that work very well, but they are lost in a morass of filler and sound effects. It’s not that it’s boring, but surely the idea of an album is to grab you by the ears and force you to listen from beginning to end. It does work on occasion, just not enough. There’s no reason why an album like this should attempt to be timeless, or even to represent the latest fashions in music; what it should do is provide enough interesting musical ideas to hook you to keep you involved for forty minutes or more – unfortunately I fear this lacks the qualities to allow it any kind of longevity.

Pop Idle is illustrator Jon Burgerman‘s current UK exhibition and is set to promise redemption, find salvation and salivation. Appropriately held at London’s Concrete Hermit Gallery, malady the exhibition includes new work produced for the show, consisting of sculptural pieces and original artwork. The exhibition also launches his monograph book entitled Gribba Grub.

The small gallery is dominated by three large sculptures; a primarily pink and orange triangular form, a rather rotund blue creation with rabbit-like ears and also a yellow sculpture with a spiky head. These sculptures, almost acting like three-dimensional figures of the characters within Burgerman’s doodles, have been adorned with his iconic graffiti style illustration.

Original artwork mirroring the sculptures hangs on the gallery’s walls. Quirky orange faces are painted on scraps of cardboard and are purposely presented in a skew-whiff composition. This set of artwork is juxtaposed with cleaner, more detailed and considered framed art. However, I did notice one of the cardboard canvases had randomly been honoured with a swish glass frame- nice touch.

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And Burgerman’s book Gribba Grub is also a creative joy to the eye. A monograph apparently bought about by a year of intensive drawing, travelling, idle thoughts and snacking. This book is a beautiful piece of art with a pleasant mishmash of photography, thoughts, doodles and Burgerman’s distinctive style of fine illustrations. Fine illustrations that according to that fact-pack encyclopaedia Wikipedia are influence by Saturday morning TV, sweet wrappers and root vegetables.

See Burgerman’s website for lots more photos from preview night, *free magazine for who can spot the four members of Amelia’s Magazine.

The exhibition runs until 30th April. Open 10am – 6pm Tuesday-Sunday.

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Swarovski‘s new product brand ‘Crystallized – Swarovski Elements‘ unveiled an astounding collection of wedding-related designs, approved under the name Unbridaled, in an exhibition on Tuesday night. The range of one-off pieces created uniquely for Swarovski by around forty ‘mostly British’ designers – including Julien Macdonald, Vivienne Westwood, Viktor & Rolf and Erdem to name but a few gems of the fashion world – encrusted unsparingly with clusters of glistening jewels, were displayed in the luxurious, pure white setting of the Crystallized Cosmos and Lounge in central London. Strung white feathers hung from ceiling to floor, and pristine white sculptures of books, pears, miniature dogs and an oversized sea snail bedecked the crystal-scattered display cabinets. Betwixt this stunning array of rainbow-twinkling crystals, delicious canopes were served and glasses of Moet continuously replenished by the affable waiting staff. The incredible attention to detail throughout the exhibition was encapsulated by the cocktail sticks on which the scallops were served; a tiny seashell had been glued onto the top of each and every one.
But the feast for the eyes was even more satisfying; wedding dresses, veils, headpieces, shoes and tableware were all embellished with various manifestations of the world-famous rocks. Among the most ravishing of items on display was a Vivienne Westwood dress, a crystal-studded, cream and silver baptismal gown by Dries Van Noten, wine bottle corks surmounted with shards of translucent purple and clear crystal by Irina Volkonskii and an intricate golden headpiece by Erickson Beamon (modelled mischievously by our very own Lauren).
The Czech-born Daniel Swarovski founded Swarovski crystals in Wattens, Austria in 1895 and the company has remained in the family ever since, retaining its classic sophistication yet moving subtly along with the changing zeitgeists, and this exhibition was a sumptuous example of the company’s ability to marry the traditional with the excitingly avant garde.

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A coffee-table book featuring these designs, entitled ‘Unbridaled’ is available from the Crystallized Cosmos and Lounge at the address above.

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Despite sharing their name with a cold-war era attack submarine, approved

LA band Sea Wolf are as far from hard and aggressive as you could get. Their polished blend of gentle acoustics, erectile rolling rhythm and soft melodic vocals follow in the footsteps of Ryan Adams and Bright Eyes. Reminiscent of Damien RIce, only less plaintive, Sea Wolf state their influences to be purely wolf-related. If X-man Wolverine had covered Leadbelly, I think it would maybe be their myspace favorite. Although similarities can be drawn to other artists, Sea Wolf are interesting and worth listening to. If you are a fan of the fore mentioned bands then you will definitely like this. Sea Wolf provide a new approach to tender acoustic indie-pop and revel in their sparkly type of musical melancholy.

Light percussion, atmospheric instrumentals and bitter-sweet lyrics create a subtle and intimate atmosphere. Even amidst the bustle of the magazine office, with music ed Christel’s big head phones on, I feel as though Alex Brown Church is singing just to me. Long cello notes and picking guitar sets the base for Church’s lamenting vocals. Sung with heartfelt longing and yet with resignation. Despite claiming to never write another sad song, this is what Sea Wolf do best. In fact, they are masters of the genre. The songs are by no means ‘happy’ but they are strangely uplifting.

The afternoon light streams in through the window and results in my conclusion that this would be perfect music for walking along to, headphones on, feeling good about the world. Or maybe listened to late night when you’re by yourself, volume turned down low. Maybe fix yourself a dry’n’rye, close your eyes and imagine you just stepped off the greyhound bus heading down some empty highway. I’m getting sentimental but these songs are sentimental to the core. Sweetly mellow but not saccharine. And coming from Los Angeles, a city famed for the superficial, Sea Wolf write songs that are emotive yet honest.

I might’ve heard something like this before, but for this category of music, Sea Wolf really does the do.

And anyway, can you ever really have enough sad songs?
Saunas and beautiful people with angular ice white hair are a couple of the great things Sweden has given to the world. Alongside these national treasures should be Jose Gonzalez.

He should be neatly bottled and labeled so that he can remain purely Scando-tastic and uncorrupted by the outside world. Born in Sweden to Argentinean parents, clinic Jose Gonzalez is clearly a superior being (and a guitar picking genius).

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When Jose first walked on stage and humbly took his seat I was struck by his awkwardness and unease at performing to such a large, viagra order buzzing audience. I almost felt guilty for being part of the expectant crowd. If only the rest of the Shepherd’s Bush Empire would disappear and Jose could play to my friend Holly and I in his flat in Haga, Gothenburg.

His tall figure hunched over the guitar seemed to be pressed down by the weight of the audience’s gaze. It reminded me of tales of the late Nick Drake who was rumored to have played from behind a curtain or with his back to the audience to escape the feeling that everyone was looking at him. But when the first few bars rippled out across the theater, he seemed to hide behind the music; introverted yet strangely sparkling at the same time. After the third song, strangely sweet animations began to appear on the screen above his head and as the gaze of the audience lifted form him, so did his unease. He relaxed, I stopped worrying about him and we all settled down to enjoy the show.

Jose Gonzalese first entered the wider popular consciousness with the hauntingly beautiful track ‘Heartbeats’, a cover of fellow scando-band The Knife, that was featured on that commercial (the one with all the colorful balls bouncing down the street, for anyone who doesn’t know). Since then he has been widely praised and enjoyed by the population at large. And really, there is little not to like about the minimal, melodic songs which include covers of Kylie’s Hand on Your Heart and Massive Attack’s Teardrops.

Live, his voice was incredible, perfect record quality…and then some. This vein of music can often be less exciting live than a high-energy band, but there was a certain magic in hearing the squeak of his fingers across the steel strings. There were subtle differences in each track from album. He kept each song tantalizingly pop-song short in length as I suspected that otherwise, live, songs might stray into fifteen minute territory. The crowd were very appreciative and the now famous shhh-ing at people chatting created a community atmosphere in the auditorium.

Jose was accompanied at various points throughout the show by two friends adding percussion and helping to create a big warm sound. Visually, the show was quite minimal. Simple Scandinavian-style animations by Elias Araya were sporadically projected on the screen behind the musicians showing gently rocking white trees with arms or my personal favorite, a little twitching white horse whose squishy head changed size throughout the song! The atmosphere was warm and friendly and I was happy to sit back and daydream…of cooking meatballs with Jose in a little wooden house in the woods??

Usually I vehemently detest encores especially second encores but as my friend holly commented, Jose’s return to the stage felt very genuine. We were both warm and cosy from our pre-show Italian dinner and beer and were happy to sit a be lulled by the Jose’s strumming. His second encore was almost like a gift to the audience. He took his seat and began to play the song that everyone had been waiting to hear. Heartbeats had been noticeably absent from the set and I had assumed the over-playing and advert association had put him off the song. As he bashfully came back on stage, he played the song with an air of …”Okay, seeing as you all have been very nice, here it is..” Aw, Jose.

After he finished, he stood up, shyly smiling and gave an awkward little bow, and then another and waved and self-conscious little wave before carefully steeping off stage. You could almost hear him saying to himself, “Don’t trip, don’t trip…..”

I wanted to put him in my pocket and take him home so he could serenade me cooking dinner. Well done Sweden, you’ve produced another winner!
This is not the stereotypical magazine you may have expected in modern times. I was a bit puzzled when I initially saw this magazine, cialis 40mg but this didn’t necessarily mean a bad thing. Someone’s Garden Magazine is not bound as a normal book, cost and all the pages are produced as folded A2 size sheets of paper that require to be opened up into individual posters to actually read the article. Maybe not that easy to read on the packed tube, but it can be folded into a neat little package, which instantly becomes very portable. You just pick the article that you want to read on the day and you can carry it around everywhere. I am personally annoyed with the fact that magazines nowadays are so thick, making them impossible to fit into my bag, not to mention rather heavy. The magazine features fashion, music to art, and features are not all based on Japan; it covers news all over the world. The articles are poetic, as well as sensitive I thought, and I like the fact that they are very underground. The goods keep coming as the back of each article transforms into a poster so you can put the page on your wall after you read the article. It’s reusable and collectable. I visited their website as well, and I must say it was rather fun. Note to self though, you need to have a good and fast Internet connection to see and play with the website proficiently. Unfortunately I don’t have fast connection so it was a bit irritating, but I could see that the website could be really fun, and very clever! The magazine is available from R.D Frank and Magma in London.

La Viande: damn cool gallery, viagra buy even better shop. Directional fashion website ninaandlola.com is celebrating its first birthday with a three dimensional shop with real clothes you can try on and everything. And my goodness, what clothes they are. The rails veritably groan with Peter Jensen’s Crayola coloured knits and Emilio de la Morena’s ethereal shirtdresses. Also on offer are pointy, sparkly disco-dancing shoes from footwear lady du jour Georgina Goodman and Spijkers en Spijkers’ expertly cut tunics in a host of unexpected colour combinations: peridot, garnet and tourmaline. And there’s a savvy selection of lesser-known labels as well, like Kind, who do a smashing trompe-l’oeil tuxedo cardigan, and Richard Sorger, who makes the kind of sequin encrusted, acid bright kaftan which would suit an aging filmstar on a Malibu poolside, but in a totally hip, ironic, clubkid kind of way. Like Chloe Sevigny in a Frank Usher jumpsuit, only even cooler.

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Yep, whatever your taste, there’s a dress with your name on it. Literally, in my case: Spijkers en Spijkers’ excellent Alexa dress in black shantung silk. There’s 10% off all stock with a flyer, and if any impecunious art school types out there are still complaining that they can’t afford the prices, I’d like to point out that it was only Student Loan day on Monday, so if you’ve spent it all already, then you’ve only got yourself to blame. And while it might be wishful thinking to suppose that the store’s gallery setting elevates a shopping trip into a cultural exercise, guest designer Hannah Marshall’s any-colour-so-long-as-it’s-black sculptural dresses certainly owe a lot to architectural forms. After all, you need something to wear to private views…

Photographer is James Lyndsay, and Lola is wearing Hannah Marshall a/w 08 and a Fiona Paxton necklace

Here’s a tip London’s A-Z is missing. If you’re looking for venue 229, sickness you won’t find it next to 228 or even 230 on Great Portland Street. Oh no, what is ed turn around, web cross over the road and you’ll stumble upon it, cunningly disguised amongst some scaffolding and badly designed street signing.

First up were Red Light Company. Super skinny with lustrous tresses and a Hugh Fernley-Whittingstall lookalike for a drummer, this band was a visual masterpiece. To be honest, I was so caught up staring at the tightly packaged bulges that were hidden behind their guitars; I phased out their grinding, indie rock tedium. Then came an incredibly disturbing foursome who donned masks before hitting the stage. But these weren’t comedy representations of superheroes, or ex-presidents of the USA. Oh no, these were masks featuring their own faces, duplicated in two-dimensional form. The effect was a bit eerie and made me quite nervous of their pseudo Hot Chip sounds. The band that followed was overshadowed by a cocky, Kelly Jones wannabe of a front man who kept climbing into the audience and was too fat for his skinny jeans.

Finally, Frightened Rabbit graced the stage. Every bit the Scottish stereotype, these hairy, boisterous, tequila swigging lads (I still think it might have been apple juice) awoke a weary crowd with thundering songs about fucking and other delicate matters of the heart. Lyrically beautiful, yet delivered with a masculine insouciance, songs such as Modern Leper, and Old Fashioned proved that these lads are going to win their audiences hearts without wanting to make them sick on their laps. The night came to a halt after the venue reached its curfew, and Frightened Rabbit’s powerful sounds rolled away back up north.

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Amelia’s Magazine | Girl talk @ The Dome

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With such dry, look visit ironic observations as ‘home is where the house is‘, this cialis 40mg Superabundance introduces itself as a melodious continuation of the faux-geek, visit web insightful pop-rock that first emerged in Voices of Animals and Men, but proceeds to take us on a spiralling journey into the dark depths of the Young Knives‘ psyche. In Terra Firma, we are confronted with the beginnings of the climactic incantations that slowly envelop us in a humming and howling hypnosis in Current of the River, which follows a sombre, medieval chant in the delightfully foreboding, pagan harmonies of Mummy Light the Fire. I don’t like to compare bands, but I found some of their wistful, nautical narratives redolent of the Decemberists‘ historical fictions.

While the insinuations of suicide in Counters left me feeling tempted to phone the three band members to see that they were alright, Rue the Days has a positively nonchalant nineties feel and Flies, a gentle meditation on the natural world, seems to encapsulate a recurring fascination with human-animal relationships; a little idiosyncratic perhaps, but I get the feeling this album is somewhat an eruption of the Young Knives’ musical multiple personality.

I listened to every word of the album, and realised it was poetry; a super abundance of philosophical metaphors immersed in a synthesis of unexpected genres, undulating from pensive, orchestral flickers to thick, satisfying explosions of bass, good old enthusiastic shouting and some of the catchiest hooks around. It may leave you weeping, but it may just as well have you running out the house in your dancing shoes.

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Photograph by Jason Nocito

Thrilling things happen when oddballs get their hands on dance music, sickness and Hercules And Love Affair are the perfect latest example of that. These five colourful characters currently breathing new life into disco are an NYC-based collective comprising of Hawaiian-born jewellery designer/DJ Kim Ann Foxman, illness Amazonian CocoRosie and Debbie Harry collaborator Nomi, about it gay B-boy dancer Shayne, Miss Piggy-loving ex-waiter Andrew Butler and new rave hoodie-donning keyboardist Morgan. And then there’s Antony Hegarty of course, he of the Johnsons fame, and it is his beautifully crooning vocals combined with the pulsing rhythms, incessant bassline and playful horns of Blind that has worked both dancefloor enthusiasts and bloggers into a frenzy since it leaked onto the internet late last year.

The outfit’s self-titled debut is littered with more of his famously melancholic performances over shimmering beat-driven efforts, but do this eccentric bunch have the talent and songwriting capabilities to sustain an entire album? The answer is yes – by the bucketload. Hercules And Love Affair slinks delicately into action with dark and sultry opener Time Will as Hegarty pleads “I cannot be half a wife” repeatedly over finger clicks and minimal backing before segueing nicely into Hercules Theme; a more upbeat affair driven by sweeping strings, soft female vocals and discordant brass snatches. This track along with the light and breezy sway of Athene, Iris’ stripped down stomp and the headspin-inducing walking bassline and scat singing of closer True False/Fake Real prove that Butler and co. can shine magnificently even when they don’t play the Antony trump card. One trick ponies this lot certainly are not.

Blind, of course, is sumptuous, sounding more and more like a classic with every listen, but it is cushioned by album tracks that each stand up admirably alongside it, and which reference everything from Chicago house to punk funk, techno and disco simultaneously through the irresistible ice cold veneer conjured up by killer production duo main-man Butler and DFA’s Tim Goldsworthy. In fact, Hercules And Love Affair is the perfect example of an epic work so cleverly constructed that its wide-ranging influences seep out subtly instead of bombarding the listener. Heartbreaking and dramatic yet utterly danceable, it boasts intelligence, heart and soul and features musical prowess that will stop you dead in your tracks. Prepare for this to soundtrack your life for months to come.

Once upon a time there was a hunter, help who woke one day to find himself transformed into the deer he killed before he had rested. Is he now the hunter? Or is he the prey?

Fashion, illness performance, advice and storytelling merged into one as Daydream Nation’s design duo Kay and Jing presented their ominous tale ‘Good Night Deer’ at the Institute of Contemporary Arts. Whilst the audience sauntered in, a man stood behind the branched mic stand donning a furry animal head. He cackled, and whistled, and screeched, and crooned ‘There’s nothing in this world for you my dear’, whilst the band played at his side. The stage had morphed into a forest.

The lights dimmed, and the performers crept in with what looked like a white drum, acting as a moon. Each of them haunted the stage wearing sleeveless t-shirts in dark brown, with bark print on the front. By pulling them up over their heads giving the illusion of trees, the indoor theatre became a night scene. With all the garments made by manipulating old clothes, Kay and Jing create new myths each season. Two girls merged together in one outfit and became a deer, whilst others had t-shirts, and dresses in earthy beiges, browns and greens, and were embroidered with antlers and deer’s.

A large silver sheet was laid on the floor, with the hunter concealed beneath it. It rustled, and lifted, before finally revealing the deer. Looking up at its audience, it was literally a deer caught in the headlights. Draped coats fastened up with bows, and a brown pinafore was worn over a silk, blue blouse. Daydream Nation’s show was an utterly enjoyable evening, full of enthusiasm and creativity.

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I LOVE THIS SONG SO MUCH.

Young Love is the beautifully melancholic ode of a one-night stand. The Mystery Jets are bang-on in featuring Laura Marling, more about the latest young darling of the music scene, tadalafil on the first single to be taken from their second album, Twenty One. I’ve never been a huge Mystery Jets fan (I wasn’t fooled, and I most certainly wasn’t called Denis) but the dialogue between Laura and Blaine telling both sides of a brief encounter won me over within the first ten seconds.

In a move I haven’t seen since the works of Jane Austen, the love affair is cut short by that damnably unpredictable British weather. Far from regarding this as twee, the lyrics “you wrote your number on my hand but it came off in the rain” melted my icily sarcastic heart.

Laura sings of how “young love never seems to last”, and it’s with this stark honesty the dialogue tells of the ephemeral nature of youthful liaisons and the quiet acceptance of the pains of growing up. It’s this self-effacing honesty combined with the vintage handclaps, oohs and aahs that create one of the best pop songs of this year.

Oh, and check out the video: it’s bound to be at the top of the YouTube hit parade in no time, as Laura and the Mystery Jet boys are involved in a game of human curling. Now that should be an Olympic sport.
‘Five Portraits of Cloth’, site a large scale, tadalafil cunningly crafted work by Jayne Archard could have been an enveloping piece – if it hadn’t had to compete with cramped canteen style tables and chairs. The Tricycle Gallery suffers a problem often seen in community arts spaces: areas are not properly defined, this meaning that an exhibition space can be transformed into a cinema’s ante-room, and a café’s overspill seating space. I’m all for showing artwork in something other than the traditional White Cube, but it can only be a hindrance to the work when you have to battle with a chair to see it properly.

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is part of the Tricycle Gallery’s Recent Graduates 2008 programme; giving artists like Archard and Knight valuable exposure that can be difficult to achieve so soon after graduation. Regrettably, in this case the work shown doesn’t function as well in the outside world as in the bubble of the art college – why should the artists assume that all the gallery goers would be able to read, or even care about, the references to conceptual art history? Adam Knight’s ‘Studio Corner (After Mel Bochner)‘(below) is an interesting photograph that investigates illusion and the documentation of a sculptural object, so why the need for the clever nudges and winks to those with a subscription to Art Review?

Even the title of this show is taken from Bochner‘s influential exhibition: ‘Working Drawings And Other Visible Things On Paper Not Necessarily Meant To Be Viewed As Art‘. In the confines of the art college studio, Archard and Knight’s works are accessible as the viewers are more likely to have a similar knowledge to that of the makers. In the Tricycle Gallery, a space attached to a café, theatre and cinema in Kilburn, the art history allusions can seem like an elitist in-joke. I can see that Knight’s work in particular could be viewed as a playful re-working of ideas about Minimalism and Conceptual Art, but unfortunately the humour falls short.

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Walking into Gramaphone five minutes into Tom James Scott‘s set was not a good idea. His music sounded so delicate that even the whir of the drinks refrigerators was distracting, this web so the sound of a door opening and two stumbling youths almost threatened to destroy the ethereal atmosphere he had created. His fragile guitar sound had an almost filmic quality; evoking images of cinematic landscapes. The performance seemed shyly self conscious, order perhaps a little fractured, but in a way that only enhanced its subtle beauty.

The acapella sound that began Wounded Knee’s set also demanded the audience’s full attention: the quiet fell once more. The singular figure of Drew Wright concocted an alchemy of sounds that ranged from the ghostly to the jubilant. Relying on effects pedals to build up intricate and textured music, the songs still sounded firmly traditional. Who’d have thought that a looped kazoo and bassy scat singing could sound so Gaelic! His music contrasts a sense of history with a playful method of music-making to create a joyful racket.

Having been lulled into a state of wooziness by the last two acts, I’m not sure I was quite ready for Jenny Hoyston. Perhaps it wasn’t that well-considered a line up by Upset The Rhythm, as previously I was more than eager to see the solo efforts of Erase Errata’s vocalist/guitarist. Hoyston’s back and forth with the audience seemed to amuse most people present, but to me it jarred after the pathos of James Scott and Wounded Knee. However, there’s no doubt that the slightly scrappy sound of Hoyston and her drummer revived me slightly; driven on by the sparse yet considered drum sound. Brief, low fi songs shined when they included rhythmic Krautrock references. It’s just a shame that the vitality of Hoyston’s music seemed oddly displaced after the previous acts.

The toilet paper is really thin here in Brazil. And it’s tropical as all hell. In an invigorating, this though makes-me-wilt-severely kinda way. And that’s about all I have to complain about so far.

We’ve been here since Wednesday and since then it’s been non-stop. We touched down on Wednesday at 6.30am after a smooth and fairly non-eventful flight on a Brazilian airline. The lights inside the cabin were getting all new rave and glo-stick on us, prostate which I actually quite enjoyed. Plenty of leg room, this site and even better: not one, but TWO spare seats adjacent to us. I live for the movies and the food when I fly, and was really impressed with the whole thing until I settled in to watch Nanny Diaries, when halfway through it, it switched over to Pirates of the Caribbean in Portugese. Nooooooooo I’m forever doomed to the dis-satisfaction of never being bothered to want to watch the first half of that film again to get to the part where Nanny gets with cute boy and affects loving change in her employers’ lives.
The effects of global warming are clearly upon us. Whether it’s on the front page of the newspaper, stuff or staring us right in the face, abortion climate change is the greatest environmental challenge facing us today. Blooming and reproducing in February; even nature and wildlife seem to be getting confused what time of year it is! The world seems to be wilting before our eyes. Environmental activists have been pushing the seriousness of this problem for a long time now, and thankfully the rest of the world are starting to take note. Artists, historically, are often first on the mark too, defining such issues. ‘Climate 4 Change’ exhibition does just that.

Leaflets and posters emblazoned with ‘Campaign against climate change’, and ‘Do you know the constitution of human rights?’ overwhelmed me as I entered. The smell of incense hit my nose.

Allie Biswas’ ‘No Rave’ painting (below) propped against the wall on the floor. Her abstract blue painting was organic, with orange, green and yellow forms, often dripping down the canvas. Frustrated with the ‘anonymous’ theme running throughout the exhibition, she claimed her work by scribbling her name on a post-it-note, and sticking it to the wall.
In the ‘Bombastic Bureau’, a man with his oversized army jacket, wearing a shiny wrestling mask protests: ‘Don’t worry I’m here, here to kill the rabbit!’ As the notes on a keyboard haunted the space, on the wall were projections of war. In a small room on its own was a short film where hands pushed and pulled, gripped and slipped throughout, defining gravity.

There was a small, perspex house, suitable for a hamster, but filled with furniture, beds, a TV, kitchen, even a parked car outside. Sawdust covered the floor, and food pellets spilled over the sink. Opposite, a man sat on the floor and asked me to shred pages of newspaper. As I proceeded on doing so, he took the tears, put them in a sealable food bag, and signed it ‘Don’. “What does it mean?” I asked, “It would take too long, I’ll tell you in the pub afterwards! Make of it what you want,” he replied. I wasn’t sure what I wanted to make of it, and maybe he didn’t either, but the bag is sitting next to me now, so thank you Don!

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Glasgow School of Arts textiles degree has churned out some pretty talented folk in its time; Jonathan Saunders and Pam Hogg are just two of their previous students. So all eyes will be on the graduates showcasing their womenswear collections in the Fashion as Textiles show at the Atrium Gallery. This exhibition aims to explore the relationship between textiles and fashion and dispel the idea of these as two separate disciplines.
Suspended from the ceiling Emmi Lahtinen‘s simple shift dresses hang like clouds, more about weightless yet substantial. Inspired by Finnish minimalism and Cecil Beaton, Lahtinen’s dresses embody a sense of light, depth and wonder. Her rain-soaked palate of greys, blues and greens are created using a mixture of screen printing and dying with digital inkjets.
Inspired by the stained glass windows in Glasgow’s Burrell Collection, Lori Marshall’s collection features high-waisted leggings with digital-prints of stained glass, laser etched velour and layered tops of sheer fabric with Tudor-style ruffled necklines.
Florence To moves away from conventional approaches to textile design. Working in neutral colours, To wraps strips of raffia and polyvinyl around wooden rings. These are linked together to create large-scale accessories, which are draped over tailored silhouettes, creating serene and lightweight designs.
Combining woven fabrics with synthetic materials, Shona Douglas’ collection challenges traditional approaches to weaving. Using raw edged silks and wools cut to fold around the body, Douglas’s skirts and tunics combine a rough-hewn aesthetic with a minimalist approach.
Huddling in the corner like a murder of crows, Louise Browns blue and black coats are dramatic and elegant, featuring appliquéd velvet roses, and topped with light-as-moor-mist ruffles. Brown focuses on volume and as a quote from Coco Chanel overhead reminds us: ‘Fashion is architecture, it is a matter of proportions’.
Although the layout of the Atrium means that some of the students have had to cramp their work into one corner, the gallery is flooded is light and its size allows intimacy, encouraging a closer view of the clothes and highlighting the details that are missed in fashion shows. That these textiles stand up to this level of scrutiny is a testimony to the talent of these promising designers.

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Seven pound alcoholic ‘Coconut Grenades’ combined with WAG central a la Mahiki Bar was perhaps not the ideal location for treating my ears to a lovely bit of Swedish pop. However, cialis 40mg I was determined not to let jersey sequinned smock dresses and trout pouts get in the way of seeing my new favourite female artist, stomach Lykke Li, who EVERYONE who is anyone is talking about, singing her wee heart out whilst shakin’ them hips, and proceeded to squeeze my way to the front of the unjustifiably ostentatious venue.

The best thing to come out of Sweden since momma’s homemade meatballs, this innocent-looking, (looking being the operative word) Bambi-eyed 21-year old starlet knocked me off my feet that fine evening, and left me hungry for more. Performing late in the night under extremely dim lighting – advanced apologies about the video quality – it was initially hard to get into the mood, but when Lykke’s alluring voice rang out to Dance, Dance, Dance it was effortless to let go of all previous pent-up bitterness; a perfectly chosen track to start off the show. Creating an all round exhilarating but unperturbed ambience, she continued to deliver hefty handfuls of arousing yet sensitive, alternative pop, with tracks such as I’m Good I’m Gone packing a jaunty punch with an attitude, the heart-wrenching Tonight, and the most painfully addictive song of the year, Little Bit, which just happens to be her forthcoming single. Sincere and honest words of unrequited love, pain, lust and heartache were sung in an omen to the most complicated of relationships.

With dance moves as quirky as her Princess Leia inspired hair-do, and mountainous amounts of raw energy, the pretty young thing owned the stage and was within her own element, even with the rather challenging audience present. Hopefully the next time Lykke will be down in London town her team will be able to find a better-suiting venue to compliment such fine talent. Now if you excuse me, I shall be off to listen to her album, Youth Novels, on repeat again and again. And again.

Lykke Li performing ‘Little Bit’ live @ Mahiki – for more Amelia’s videos click away: AMELIA’S VIDS.
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If Kate Bush was a man, prostate joined a book club with Joy Division, had Patrick Wolf over for cups of tea on a regular basis and they all did each others’ make-up on ketamine, this collective of genius might have produced sounds equivalent to FrYars‘ musical offering. Following last year’s EP The Ides, The Perfidy is a keyboard-borne manifestation of this scenario of auditory dreams, but with unique elements that only FrYars – the pseudonym of nineteen-year-old Ben Garrett – could create; songs formed from prose, telling melancholic folk stories of treacherous impregnation, ‘evil’ and the collapsing marriage of a novelist: “Now you can see there’s a mess you’re in/ No problem solved without ketamine/ And it’s probably best that you stay in your hole/ For I’d rather stick to my ethanol”. The video for Olive Eyes is like a French film noir starring Garrett as a New Romantic enshrouded in horrifying shadows, contemptuously eating a bowl of cornflakes. Indeed, there is something of the k-hole that lingers in this slightly nightmarish scene, but something equally intriguing and seductive; a conflicting attraction which the music itself also provokes. I imagine it is most probable that when he finished the making of this EP, FrYars raised Lord Nelson from the dead, had a duel with him, and won; such is the strength of the message that anything is possible, subliminally communicated through FrYars’ astonishingly original work. Kismet, Hardy! I’m off to join that book club.
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Cruel schoolyard carrot-top (FYI, dosage Redhead Lauren says carrot tops are actually green you bullies) nicknames are to be no more. Gingers got a makeover courtesy of number one, find handsome Ron Weasley, and number two, the quiet but feisty popstrel from Girls Aloud, Nicola Roberts.

In collaboration with luxury cosmetics brand Jelly Pong Pong, the less talked about girl band member has introduced a new make-up range in celebration of pale-skinned Celtic beauties, such as our lovely fashion Ed, Miss. McColl. Dainty Doll offers beautifying products from neutral bases and eye shadows to blushing pink lip-glosses; everything a girl needs to achieve China doll cheeks and plumped up babydoll lips to compliment the whitest of complexions.

For the lucky sun-kissed goddesses out there, their finest offerings include shimmering Venus magical pearls for highlighting your most exquisite features, and gourmet lip salves (which claim to rekindle your soul), comprised of the most indulgent ingredient list of chocolate, sugar, milk, liquorice and honey. Yum yum. Packaging is just as decadent – little pocket-sized boxes in all shapes and sizes, gilded, embossed and ribboned, all dusted off with a little sparkle. If you’re one for splashing out on such facial décor then succumb to these divine temptations, but be prepared to shell out for such extravagance.

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Yes, capsule I know, another ethical, ‘save the planet’ calico bag, but when elite designers start getting their mitts on them you know you can only expect the finest. Eley Kishimoto has teamed up with Cancer Research UK in aid of raising money to help fund research towards beating cancer by launching a self-effacing, reusable organic cotton bag printed (with water based inks, might I add) with a humble orange owl upon a vivid blue moon. No fat ‘I’m not a plastic bag‘ slogans all over the front, this simple bag aims to cause effect without having to rub it in everyone’s faces.

I am not one for drumming the fact that we’re practically killing the planet just by breathing, into your sullied ears, but if we can help out Mother Nature as well as donate to a reputable charity that saves lives, then surely it’s worth forking out a measly £2.99 for this little gem? With countless designs of new reusable bags on the scene it’s become easier than ever to become slightly greener, but add that extra solicitous factor by choosing this bag in particular. Take your wee owl home from March the 1st at all Cancer Research UK shops.

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After much self-inflicted blasting of Night Ripper into mine ears upon the bus of 149, page I was expecting a paramount performance from mash-up DJ Gregg Gillis, aka Girl Talk of Pennsylvania. However, as I am always told, expectations are the set up of disappointment and with an upset stomach and a screaming, head-splitting, keyboard bashing duo beforehand, the evening was doing a pretty good job of weaning it’s way out of my good books. I had failed to notice a fat ‘Boston’ logo on the front sign beforehand, so when I realised that all corners of the venue were filled with Americans, I began feeling slightly odd and insignificant. I am still unsure of why it felt so outlandish; it was as if I’d been teleported to a different country of alien species without prior warning, but then again, perhaps Girl Talk was SO brilliant he may just have had an avid Yankee following in London, which can only be a good sign. Maybe.

American sacrilege aside, after the shrieking teenagers had fled the stage, some random greasy-haired technician began setting up laptops, but a closer look assured me it was actually Gregg himself. Disappointed I may have been with his original mundane attire, but after much faffing about for half an hour gaffataping wires, he reappeared with trendy headband, red hoody and dirty grey joggers in tow. After a semi-haughty ‘God bless America’ speech (the crowd went wild as you’d expect- those crazy ruffians), he finally delivered the goods. His signature style of cut and paste hip-hop beats and rhymes layered on top of indie and old school classics failed to disappoint, and moments in, EVERYONE, including myself, unashamedly ambushed the stage to rave with the sweaty mongrel (who looked like he’d just come from ‘The Last Supper‘ as Amy observed). Arms were up in the air, bottoms were sticking out, a few gun fingers were on show, and wet hair was swishing all over the place – but what made it extra bizarre was Gregg’s eagerness to join in with the crowd; all lines between celebrity and public civilians were lost amidst the revelry. His delirious washing machine moves led to the flinging of his clothes everywhere from top to bottom, but thankfully, I think, his boxers just about stayed on as a rampant fan yanked at one side giving me a perfect snap happy opportunity of half his buttocks. Scroll down to take an exclusive look – you perverts.

It was best that the early curfew of fifteen minutes past midnight was kept in place, as if I’d danced anymore I might have keeled over like one of the drunken frantic girls there who fell off a table three times, each time insisting she get back on her high horse. Electrifying this hairy man was, and I shall certainly be inviting him over to the UK again to DJ at my house sometime; providing he keeps his clothes on, of course.

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Music ed’s note: Did you scroll down before you read the whole post? You should be ashamed of yourselves!

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Amelia’s Magazine | Joe Dangerous @ Hoxton Bar and Grill

A pale, brooding character takes to the stage armed with only a small keyboard, which hangs from his neck, and a laptop. Joe (not so) Dangerous‘ lack of musical apparatus and physical presence does not do justice to the richness of sound he creates from so little, filling the spacious Hoxton venue with fragmented tones and hushed, eloquent vocals. To celebrate the release of his debut single, My Allergies And Me, on Mannequin Republic (the label owned and run by Sam Duckworth of Get Cape. Wear Cape. Fly), the short set he performed included songs inspired by diverse and weighty topics ranging from religion to Michael Jackson. I’m informed that Joe Dangerous is soon to appear with a full band including backing vocals, drums and violinist which can only add to his intensely atmospheric electronica
There’s plenty in the pipeline to keep this young man busy in the coming months. Joe Dangerous will be performing at the Dot to Dot festival alongside Hercules & Love Affair and the Mystery Jets, he’ll also be appearing at Kendal Calling in Cumbria and the Kentish Town Forum festivals with the likes of Amon Tobin and Chris Clark. All in a days work for this rare, unassuming gent.

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Amelia’s Magazine | The Puppini Sisters @ Sheperds Bush Empire

Many thanks to Mr Avsh Alom Gur who injected a bit of much needed humour into an otherwise straight-faced London fashion week. Part of the Vauxhall Fashion Scout line-up at Baden Powell House (which also doubles as a youth hostel, buy information pills salve useful for anyone who needs a lie down between shows) he drew a sizeable crowd for a relative newcomer. The enthusiastic rabble also included my ‘Best Dressed Show-goer of the week’; a woman I seemed to see everywhere, erectile pulling off the Katharine Hepburn power-trousers meets 50s rockabilly look with eye-popping skill day after day. Superb.

Anyway, back to the show which opened to the sounds of tinkling bells and Queen’s ‘Bicycle Race.’ We were quickly left in no doubt as to the theme. City cycling. A glamorous, multi-coloured ride around town. Your leisurely jaunt along a country lane this wasn’t. Acid bright chiffons and silks were turned into a series of loosely constructed short length dresses. The Grecian thing obviously hasn’t run its course just yet with AAG determined to push those Hellenistic necklines. Tie-dye made a brief but brilliant appearance in a simple, casual shift dress. I know tie-dye has been buzzing around for quite some time now but this was one of the first occasions where it didn’t look annoyingly ‘on-trend’, instead being just an interesting way to play with colour.

The obligatory swimwear moment turned out to be my favourite of SS08. A rainbow striped deep-v swimsuit which wouldn’t win any prizes for originality but was just plain gorgeous. Accessories came in the shape of (actual) bike wheel bracelets, spare parts as waist decoration as well as bike frames worn as shoulder pieces. All very OTT-the loud clanging noise was a little distracting, but fun all the same. Sponsorship by Raleigh was celebrated with a cheeky deep blue shift dress emblazoned with the company logo, topped in the silly stakes only by the Morrisons plastic bag dress.

On paper the collection wouldn’t be my cup of tea but there were so many charming touches that it won me over in the first two minutes. A brilliant soundtrack (Late of the Pier-the bears are coming. The candy-bright lipstick and slick (bike-practical) hair-knots. The Frida Kahlo-esque eccentricity of it all…I could go on. A bold collection that had us all grinning like kids in a sweetshop.
The Scala was full and the line outside, side effects long. It was a weird crowd, not what I expected in the slightest; made up mainly of middle aged, balding, paunchy men wearing polo shirts, mixed up with some younger’uns and other regular Jills and Joes who’d finished work at the office not a few hours earlier. I can’t quite remember what I was expecting to see from Simian Mobile Disco duo James Ford and Jas Shaw, but on sighting the set up on stage – some mad scientist’s mini lab – I wondered how SMD were going to present themselves and their music in this ‘live gig’ format.

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Amelia’s Magazine | Lykke Li @ Mahiki

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With such dry, look visit ironic observations as ‘home is where the house is‘, this cialis 40mg Superabundance introduces itself as a melodious continuation of the faux-geek, visit web insightful pop-rock that first emerged in Voices of Animals and Men, but proceeds to take us on a spiralling journey into the dark depths of the Young Knives‘ psyche. In Terra Firma, we are confronted with the beginnings of the climactic incantations that slowly envelop us in a humming and howling hypnosis in Current of the River, which follows a sombre, medieval chant in the delightfully foreboding, pagan harmonies of Mummy Light the Fire. I don’t like to compare bands, but I found some of their wistful, nautical narratives redolent of the Decemberists‘ historical fictions.

While the insinuations of suicide in Counters left me feeling tempted to phone the three band members to see that they were alright, Rue the Days has a positively nonchalant nineties feel and Flies, a gentle meditation on the natural world, seems to encapsulate a recurring fascination with human-animal relationships; a little idiosyncratic perhaps, but I get the feeling this album is somewhat an eruption of the Young Knives’ musical multiple personality.

I listened to every word of the album, and realised it was poetry; a super abundance of philosophical metaphors immersed in a synthesis of unexpected genres, undulating from pensive, orchestral flickers to thick, satisfying explosions of bass, good old enthusiastic shouting and some of the catchiest hooks around. It may leave you weeping, but it may just as well have you running out the house in your dancing shoes.

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Photograph by Jason Nocito

Thrilling things happen when oddballs get their hands on dance music, sickness and Hercules And Love Affair are the perfect latest example of that. These five colourful characters currently breathing new life into disco are an NYC-based collective comprising of Hawaiian-born jewellery designer/DJ Kim Ann Foxman, illness Amazonian CocoRosie and Debbie Harry collaborator Nomi, about it gay B-boy dancer Shayne, Miss Piggy-loving ex-waiter Andrew Butler and new rave hoodie-donning keyboardist Morgan. And then there’s Antony Hegarty of course, he of the Johnsons fame, and it is his beautifully crooning vocals combined with the pulsing rhythms, incessant bassline and playful horns of Blind that has worked both dancefloor enthusiasts and bloggers into a frenzy since it leaked onto the internet late last year.

The outfit’s self-titled debut is littered with more of his famously melancholic performances over shimmering beat-driven efforts, but do this eccentric bunch have the talent and songwriting capabilities to sustain an entire album? The answer is yes – by the bucketload. Hercules And Love Affair slinks delicately into action with dark and sultry opener Time Will as Hegarty pleads “I cannot be half a wife” repeatedly over finger clicks and minimal backing before segueing nicely into Hercules Theme; a more upbeat affair driven by sweeping strings, soft female vocals and discordant brass snatches. This track along with the light and breezy sway of Athene, Iris’ stripped down stomp and the headspin-inducing walking bassline and scat singing of closer True False/Fake Real prove that Butler and co. can shine magnificently even when they don’t play the Antony trump card. One trick ponies this lot certainly are not.

Blind, of course, is sumptuous, sounding more and more like a classic with every listen, but it is cushioned by album tracks that each stand up admirably alongside it, and which reference everything from Chicago house to punk funk, techno and disco simultaneously through the irresistible ice cold veneer conjured up by killer production duo main-man Butler and DFA’s Tim Goldsworthy. In fact, Hercules And Love Affair is the perfect example of an epic work so cleverly constructed that its wide-ranging influences seep out subtly instead of bombarding the listener. Heartbreaking and dramatic yet utterly danceable, it boasts intelligence, heart and soul and features musical prowess that will stop you dead in your tracks. Prepare for this to soundtrack your life for months to come.

Once upon a time there was a hunter, help who woke one day to find himself transformed into the deer he killed before he had rested. Is he now the hunter? Or is he the prey?

Fashion, illness performance, advice and storytelling merged into one as Daydream Nation’s design duo Kay and Jing presented their ominous tale ‘Good Night Deer’ at the Institute of Contemporary Arts. Whilst the audience sauntered in, a man stood behind the branched mic stand donning a furry animal head. He cackled, and whistled, and screeched, and crooned ‘There’s nothing in this world for you my dear’, whilst the band played at his side. The stage had morphed into a forest.

The lights dimmed, and the performers crept in with what looked like a white drum, acting as a moon. Each of them haunted the stage wearing sleeveless t-shirts in dark brown, with bark print on the front. By pulling them up over their heads giving the illusion of trees, the indoor theatre became a night scene. With all the garments made by manipulating old clothes, Kay and Jing create new myths each season. Two girls merged together in one outfit and became a deer, whilst others had t-shirts, and dresses in earthy beiges, browns and greens, and were embroidered with antlers and deer’s.

A large silver sheet was laid on the floor, with the hunter concealed beneath it. It rustled, and lifted, before finally revealing the deer. Looking up at its audience, it was literally a deer caught in the headlights. Draped coats fastened up with bows, and a brown pinafore was worn over a silk, blue blouse. Daydream Nation’s show was an utterly enjoyable evening, full of enthusiasm and creativity.

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I LOVE THIS SONG SO MUCH.

Young Love is the beautifully melancholic ode of a one-night stand. The Mystery Jets are bang-on in featuring Laura Marling, more about the latest young darling of the music scene, tadalafil on the first single to be taken from their second album, Twenty One. I’ve never been a huge Mystery Jets fan (I wasn’t fooled, and I most certainly wasn’t called Denis) but the dialogue between Laura and Blaine telling both sides of a brief encounter won me over within the first ten seconds.

In a move I haven’t seen since the works of Jane Austen, the love affair is cut short by that damnably unpredictable British weather. Far from regarding this as twee, the lyrics “you wrote your number on my hand but it came off in the rain” melted my icily sarcastic heart.

Laura sings of how “young love never seems to last”, and it’s with this stark honesty the dialogue tells of the ephemeral nature of youthful liaisons and the quiet acceptance of the pains of growing up. It’s this self-effacing honesty combined with the vintage handclaps, oohs and aahs that create one of the best pop songs of this year.

Oh, and check out the video: it’s bound to be at the top of the YouTube hit parade in no time, as Laura and the Mystery Jet boys are involved in a game of human curling. Now that should be an Olympic sport.
‘Five Portraits of Cloth’, site a large scale, tadalafil cunningly crafted work by Jayne Archard could have been an enveloping piece – if it hadn’t had to compete with cramped canteen style tables and chairs. The Tricycle Gallery suffers a problem often seen in community arts spaces: areas are not properly defined, this meaning that an exhibition space can be transformed into a cinema’s ante-room, and a café’s overspill seating space. I’m all for showing artwork in something other than the traditional White Cube, but it can only be a hindrance to the work when you have to battle with a chair to see it properly.

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is part of the Tricycle Gallery’s Recent Graduates 2008 programme; giving artists like Archard and Knight valuable exposure that can be difficult to achieve so soon after graduation. Regrettably, in this case the work shown doesn’t function as well in the outside world as in the bubble of the art college – why should the artists assume that all the gallery goers would be able to read, or even care about, the references to conceptual art history? Adam Knight’s ‘Studio Corner (After Mel Bochner)‘(below) is an interesting photograph that investigates illusion and the documentation of a sculptural object, so why the need for the clever nudges and winks to those with a subscription to Art Review?

Even the title of this show is taken from Bochner‘s influential exhibition: ‘Working Drawings And Other Visible Things On Paper Not Necessarily Meant To Be Viewed As Art‘. In the confines of the art college studio, Archard and Knight’s works are accessible as the viewers are more likely to have a similar knowledge to that of the makers. In the Tricycle Gallery, a space attached to a café, theatre and cinema in Kilburn, the art history allusions can seem like an elitist in-joke. I can see that Knight’s work in particular could be viewed as a playful re-working of ideas about Minimalism and Conceptual Art, but unfortunately the humour falls short.

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Walking into Gramaphone five minutes into Tom James Scott‘s set was not a good idea. His music sounded so delicate that even the whir of the drinks refrigerators was distracting, this web so the sound of a door opening and two stumbling youths almost threatened to destroy the ethereal atmosphere he had created. His fragile guitar sound had an almost filmic quality; evoking images of cinematic landscapes. The performance seemed shyly self conscious, order perhaps a little fractured, but in a way that only enhanced its subtle beauty.

The acapella sound that began Wounded Knee’s set also demanded the audience’s full attention: the quiet fell once more. The singular figure of Drew Wright concocted an alchemy of sounds that ranged from the ghostly to the jubilant. Relying on effects pedals to build up intricate and textured music, the songs still sounded firmly traditional. Who’d have thought that a looped kazoo and bassy scat singing could sound so Gaelic! His music contrasts a sense of history with a playful method of music-making to create a joyful racket.

Having been lulled into a state of wooziness by the last two acts, I’m not sure I was quite ready for Jenny Hoyston. Perhaps it wasn’t that well-considered a line up by Upset The Rhythm, as previously I was more than eager to see the solo efforts of Erase Errata’s vocalist/guitarist. Hoyston’s back and forth with the audience seemed to amuse most people present, but to me it jarred after the pathos of James Scott and Wounded Knee. However, there’s no doubt that the slightly scrappy sound of Hoyston and her drummer revived me slightly; driven on by the sparse yet considered drum sound. Brief, low fi songs shined when they included rhythmic Krautrock references. It’s just a shame that the vitality of Hoyston’s music seemed oddly displaced after the previous acts.

The toilet paper is really thin here in Brazil. And it’s tropical as all hell. In an invigorating, this though makes-me-wilt-severely kinda way. And that’s about all I have to complain about so far.

We’ve been here since Wednesday and since then it’s been non-stop. We touched down on Wednesday at 6.30am after a smooth and fairly non-eventful flight on a Brazilian airline. The lights inside the cabin were getting all new rave and glo-stick on us, prostate which I actually quite enjoyed. Plenty of leg room, this site and even better: not one, but TWO spare seats adjacent to us. I live for the movies and the food when I fly, and was really impressed with the whole thing until I settled in to watch Nanny Diaries, when halfway through it, it switched over to Pirates of the Caribbean in Portugese. Nooooooooo I’m forever doomed to the dis-satisfaction of never being bothered to want to watch the first half of that film again to get to the part where Nanny gets with cute boy and affects loving change in her employers’ lives.
The effects of global warming are clearly upon us. Whether it’s on the front page of the newspaper, stuff or staring us right in the face, abortion climate change is the greatest environmental challenge facing us today. Blooming and reproducing in February; even nature and wildlife seem to be getting confused what time of year it is! The world seems to be wilting before our eyes. Environmental activists have been pushing the seriousness of this problem for a long time now, and thankfully the rest of the world are starting to take note. Artists, historically, are often first on the mark too, defining such issues. ‘Climate 4 Change’ exhibition does just that.

Leaflets and posters emblazoned with ‘Campaign against climate change’, and ‘Do you know the constitution of human rights?’ overwhelmed me as I entered. The smell of incense hit my nose.

Allie Biswas’ ‘No Rave’ painting (below) propped against the wall on the floor. Her abstract blue painting was organic, with orange, green and yellow forms, often dripping down the canvas. Frustrated with the ‘anonymous’ theme running throughout the exhibition, she claimed her work by scribbling her name on a post-it-note, and sticking it to the wall.
In the ‘Bombastic Bureau’, a man with his oversized army jacket, wearing a shiny wrestling mask protests: ‘Don’t worry I’m here, here to kill the rabbit!’ As the notes on a keyboard haunted the space, on the wall were projections of war. In a small room on its own was a short film where hands pushed and pulled, gripped and slipped throughout, defining gravity.

There was a small, perspex house, suitable for a hamster, but filled with furniture, beds, a TV, kitchen, even a parked car outside. Sawdust covered the floor, and food pellets spilled over the sink. Opposite, a man sat on the floor and asked me to shred pages of newspaper. As I proceeded on doing so, he took the tears, put them in a sealable food bag, and signed it ‘Don’. “What does it mean?” I asked, “It would take too long, I’ll tell you in the pub afterwards! Make of it what you want,” he replied. I wasn’t sure what I wanted to make of it, and maybe he didn’t either, but the bag is sitting next to me now, so thank you Don!

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Glasgow School of Arts textiles degree has churned out some pretty talented folk in its time; Jonathan Saunders and Pam Hogg are just two of their previous students. So all eyes will be on the graduates showcasing their womenswear collections in the Fashion as Textiles show at the Atrium Gallery. This exhibition aims to explore the relationship between textiles and fashion and dispel the idea of these as two separate disciplines.
Suspended from the ceiling Emmi Lahtinen‘s simple shift dresses hang like clouds, more about weightless yet substantial. Inspired by Finnish minimalism and Cecil Beaton, Lahtinen’s dresses embody a sense of light, depth and wonder. Her rain-soaked palate of greys, blues and greens are created using a mixture of screen printing and dying with digital inkjets.
Inspired by the stained glass windows in Glasgow’s Burrell Collection, Lori Marshall’s collection features high-waisted leggings with digital-prints of stained glass, laser etched velour and layered tops of sheer fabric with Tudor-style ruffled necklines.
Florence To moves away from conventional approaches to textile design. Working in neutral colours, To wraps strips of raffia and polyvinyl around wooden rings. These are linked together to create large-scale accessories, which are draped over tailored silhouettes, creating serene and lightweight designs.
Combining woven fabrics with synthetic materials, Shona Douglas’ collection challenges traditional approaches to weaving. Using raw edged silks and wools cut to fold around the body, Douglas’s skirts and tunics combine a rough-hewn aesthetic with a minimalist approach.
Huddling in the corner like a murder of crows, Louise Browns blue and black coats are dramatic and elegant, featuring appliquéd velvet roses, and topped with light-as-moor-mist ruffles. Brown focuses on volume and as a quote from Coco Chanel overhead reminds us: ‘Fashion is architecture, it is a matter of proportions’.
Although the layout of the Atrium means that some of the students have had to cramp their work into one corner, the gallery is flooded is light and its size allows intimacy, encouraging a closer view of the clothes and highlighting the details that are missed in fashion shows. That these textiles stand up to this level of scrutiny is a testimony to the talent of these promising designers.

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Seven pound alcoholic ‘Coconut Grenades’ combined with WAG central a la Mahiki Bar was perhaps not the ideal location for treating my ears to a lovely bit of Swedish pop. However, cialis 40mg I was determined not to let jersey sequinned smock dresses and trout pouts get in the way of seeing my new favourite female artist, stomach Lykke Li, who EVERYONE who is anyone is talking about, singing her wee heart out whilst shakin’ them hips, and proceeded to squeeze my way to the front of the unjustifiably ostentatious venue.

The best thing to come out of Sweden since momma’s homemade meatballs, this innocent-looking, (looking being the operative word) Bambi-eyed 21-year old starlet knocked me off my feet that fine evening, and left me hungry for more. Performing late in the night under extremely dim lighting – advanced apologies about the video quality – it was initially hard to get into the mood, but when Lykke’s alluring voice rang out to Dance, Dance, Dance it was effortless to let go of all previous pent-up bitterness; a perfectly chosen track to start off the show. Creating an all round exhilarating but unperturbed ambience, she continued to deliver hefty handfuls of arousing yet sensitive, alternative pop, with tracks such as I’m Good I’m Gone packing a jaunty punch with an attitude, the heart-wrenching Tonight, and the most painfully addictive song of the year, Little Bit, which just happens to be her forthcoming single. Sincere and honest words of unrequited love, pain, lust and heartache were sung in an omen to the most complicated of relationships.

With dance moves as quirky as her Princess Leia inspired hair-do, and mountainous amounts of raw energy, the pretty young thing owned the stage and was within her own element, even with the rather challenging audience present. Hopefully the next time Lykke will be down in London town her team will be able to find a better-suiting venue to compliment such fine talent. Now if you excuse me, I shall be off to listen to her album, Youth Novels, on repeat again and again. And again.

Lykke Li performing ‘Little Bit’ live @ Mahiki – for more Amelia’s videos click away: AMELIA’S VIDS.

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Amelia’s Magazine | Lykke Li @ Mahiki

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Seven pound alcoholic ‘Coconut Grenades’ combined with WAG central a la Mahiki Bar was perhaps not the ideal location for treating my ears to a lovely bit of Swedish pop. However, I was determined not to let jersey sequinned smock dresses and trout pouts get in the way of seeing my new favourite female artist, Lykke Li, who EVERYONE who is anyone is talking about, singing her wee heart out whilst shakin’ them hips, and proceeded to squeeze my way to the front of the unjustifiably ostentatious venue.

The best thing to come out of Sweden since momma’s homemade meatballs, this innocent-looking, (looking being the operative word) Bambi-eyed 21-year old starlet knocked me off my feet that fine evening, and left me hungry for more. Performing late in the night under extremely dim lighting – advanced apologies about the video quality – it was initially hard to get into the mood, but when Lykke’s alluring voice rang out to Dance, Dance, Dance it was effortless to let go of all previous pent-up bitterness; a perfectly chosen track to start off the show. Creating an all round exhilarating but unperturbed ambience, she continued to deliver hefty handfuls of arousing yet sensitive, alternative pop, with tracks such as I’m Good I’m Gone packing a jaunty punch with an attitude, the heart-wrenching Tonight, and the most painfully addictive song of the year, Little Bit, which just happens to be her forthcoming single. Sincere and honest words of unrequited love, pain, lust and heartache were sung in an omen to the most complicated of relationships.

With dance moves as quirky as her Princess Leia inspired hair-do, and mountainous amounts of raw energy, the pretty young thing owned the stage and was within her own element, even with the rather challenging audience present. Hopefully the next time Lykke will be down in London town her team will be able to find a better-suiting venue to compliment such fine talent. Now if you excuse me, I shall be off to listen to her album, Youth Novels, on repeat again and again. And again.

Lykke Li performing ‘Little Bit’ live @ Mahiki – for more Amelia’s videos click away: AMELIA’S VIDS.

Categories ,Live Sweden Dance Album Venue

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Amelia’s Magazine | Micah P. Hinson @ Hoxton Hall

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Planet Patrol is a series of ongoing live urban art events held at various venues in and around London. The concept behind Planet Patrol is to present some of today’s most in demand and sought after urban artists, purchase prescription in an environment which allows people to witness live art/music & visuals all under one roof. Aside from the regular London events, this site prostate Planet Patrol recently held it’s first global sessions tour of Japan, troche Bruno 9LI one of Brazils most talented street artists was invited over to create live art whilst DJ Aya provided the necessary musical back drop.

Screen prints & original pieces from the likes of Eelus, SheOne, Dan Malone & Adam Koukoudakis were also on show. Planet Patrol held a total of three live events, these included Tokyo, Osaka & Fukuoka. Bruno 9LI created three mind-blowing canvases, one for each event, these took up to a total of fours each to complete. The lucky few who had been invited to these events witnessed live art from a truly dedicated and highly skilled master of his art!

Planet Patrol have Just released a very limited, signed, numbered & embossed silk screen based on an original piece that Bruno created for the Tokyo event! Bruno’s next exhibition will be taking place in August at the Annno Domini gallery in California, Planet Patrol will also be exhibiting the new silk screen & an original canvas from the Japan tour at the Burning Bridges group exhibition to be held from Friday 13th June – 22nd at the Bricklane gallery, 196 Brick lane, London.

Mr Bruno Novelli has also designed the cover of Issue 9 of Amelia’s Magazine…..

Silk screen available from www.planetpatrol.co.uk
Tour photos: www.flickr.com/photos/planetpatrol
Not to be confused with Shoreditch Hall, this web Hoxton Hall is a stunning Victorian venue more commonly used as a community centre, viagra buy hosting coffee mornings and craft sessions in the forgotten art of basket weaving. For tonight, nurse the ornate iron balcony and draped red curtain were the perfect setting for an intimate gathering of just eighty invited guests to showcase Micah‘s forth coming album.
Micah performed with all his usual vim and vigour, a two hour set of tracks old and new, from the tender, heart-wrenching chords of Beneath The Rose to the crashing tones of The Leading Guy. Insisting that nothing he played from the upcoming album sounded anything like the record, Micah sang quiet songs about wishing wells and loud songs about regret intermission by anecdotal tales of life’s ironies. He also spoke of the happiness he’s found with wife of two weeks and four days, Mrs Ashley Bryn Hinson, a picture of whom now adorns his guitar.
Picture if you will a young man sitting on the front porch of his family home in the secluded town of Abilene, Texas. Convalescing from intensive surgery, the young man is confined by a back brace and the haziness induced by a cocktail of sedatives and weed. He spends his days writing songs for the girl next door whom he longs to see if only for a moment as she cycles past. This was just one of many fables regaled by Micah at the showcase. Such romantic yarns are the stuff of fiction, just another chapter in the life of Micah P Hinson.

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