Having been sent home from work early today due to the 'severe weather conditions' (i.e. snow) disrupting all transport ever, I ended up scouring the internet for unaffordable toys. I was reminded of the brilliant Mui-Chan by iXTEE, with her bizarrely asymmetrical facial expression which lends itself so well to lively photographs (lively for an inanimate object anyway. I'd like to see a stop-motion animation featuring Mui-Chan so if you're in the business for such things I hope you'll consider it!)
Fellow Japanophile Alice Urbino has introduced me to the Puchi Puchi Edamame Soybean keyring, an object of inexplicable yet somehow reassuring appeal. Surely the world can't be such a bad place when people play gleefully with plastic peas in a pod with faces which are advertised in the manner shown below? Okay, my argument is flawed, I admit it, but please enjoy the video at your leisure.
The toy festival itself featured everything from the increasingly popular Tokidoki range by Simone Legno to a lowlife elephant covered in blood and smoking out of its tusk hole. The impossibly cute fighting cats (see top and bottom of the post) were probably my favourites. I took quite a lot of photos but will resist posting them all here...
By the way, apologies for not crediting the photos of Mui-Chan and Core Pacific Living Mall - I forgot to take note of where I found them so if you can enlighten me then please do so. I will credit or remove them if necessary. All other photos are my own.
Disguise, Manchester Art Gallery (Spring/Summer 2004) Featuring the works of Leigh Bowery, Fergus Greer and Cindy Sherman among others, on the theme of disguise and questioning identity. There was even a dressing up box so you could have a go yourself!
FRAC Centre Exhibition, Taipei Fine Arts Museum (Summer 2008)
Including some astounding works from the 1960s European radical architecture movement.
Annette Messager's The Messengers at Mori Art Museum, Tokyo (September 2008)
Covering four decades of work by the fantastical French artist.
The Black Page at Shandy Hall, Coxwold (September 2009)
Featuring work by 73 key artists/writers recreating page 73 of Laurence Sterne's highly influential 1759 novel Tristram Shandy - a black page marking the death of one of the characters.
And the not-specific-to-this-decade, wonderfully creepy collection of taxidermy, fossils and skeletons at the Booth Museum, Brighton.
I have to admit I may have forgotten some important exhibitions from the beginning of the decade when I was merely 15. But I am now anal enough to keep a list of all my shows visited, books read, films watched, bands seen etc. Next year I should have a more accurate list of favourites, and it will cover only one year rather than ten (so hard to choose...)
Here's to another decade of seeking out exciting artwork nationally and internationally... let us know if there's anything you think we should see.
Happy New Year!