Sunday, November 24, 2013

Trending this week: Deadly females

Frome faced the first frost of winter flamboyantly with a plethora of varied creative enterprises this weekend: Friday's brilliant Acoustic Plus night at the Cheese & Grain featured the legendary Bugs as well as Frome Afrobeat Project ~ a town-sponsored scheme for young musicians led by Lekan Babalola. Saturday was the 5th birthday of Deadly is the Female ~ internationally famed since Nigella Lawson's twitter endorsement~ celebrated in quirky baroque style with tequila cocktails and live mannequins in the window... great fun ~

~ and strangely surreal to go direct to Marian Bruce's exhibition a few doors away... "Studio Collection" is what the title suggests: an assembly of random items from the artist's working area, in various media. I've worked with Marian on several projects and it's almost impossible to find words to express the life-vision her work embodies or the dark energy that emanates.  The small pieces cramming The Parlour stir memories, evoke myths, and dig deep into feelings of human endurance and frailty. They are provocative, disturbing and inspirational. Picasso said art should 'bristle with razors' and these disempowered, dismembered, silent heads and small sewn-up bodies have that power.

Another woman artist's exhibition opening too: Charlotte Moore, taking classic paintings 'Off the Wall' at the Black Swan, presenting familiar images from art ~ mostly naked women ~ recreated as daubed figures on wire mesh, cut and layered to offer spaces for the intruding viewer. Words at the Black Swan group found much to discuss and debate in this challenging re-making of cultural iconography. Our responses when shaped into poetic form will displayed with the exhibition, which runs until 24th December.

And, loosely connected with surreal journeys through time & place, a quick plug for the next Frome Poetry Cafe on Monday December 2nd, themed to tie in with the Merlin Theatre winter show,  Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass.  By then Frome will be all a-glitter with festive lights switched on by local hero Jenson Button, Nevertheless Productions will have moved into top gear with our seasonal Pub Theatre production Festive Stockings, and it won't be long before the mayhem begins...

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