I had a really rotten weekend. I wasted all Saturday by having a massive hangover, which as light weight drinker is an unusual and unpleasant thing. Sunday I spent quarreling and sulking in Angel park while drinking a small pink zinfandel straight out of the bottle like an old wino.
Monday was the big show set up day. Vans had to be loaded and unloaded and worst of all, a 6:00am wake up to be at college by 7:30 sharp. I got into bed by 8 in the evening on the Sunday but watched too much Gordon Ramsay while drooling all over my duvet, thus sleeping later than I ought to. Had horrible shifting dreams all night and woke up at 5:45am to the lovely early morning bird song and warblings of large vans and speeding cars on Brixton Hill.
I immediately fired off a cranky and irate text message and promptly felt better.
We arrived at Catton Street only to be shunted off to Mall within 10 minutes by Dan. We loafed around at the Mall for half and hour waiting to unload the vans.
Unloading the vans was difficult for a weakling like me, especially the massive walls that we needed to erect later that morning.
Everyone was dressed in their skankiest, grubbiest clothes. Onnalin was wearing shorts, torn tights and a bunch of holes held together by a T-shirt that discreetly covered her bra.
There was a very pretty, skinny, blond girl that I noticed (of course) who was wearing the whitest cleanest, most beautiful, little frock, over a lovely pair of leggings paired cute matching ballet shoes. At the pub later that day, naturally we tore her apart, and her (allegedly) fake tan. Fernanda and Amalia angrily insisted it wasn’t a real tan. I couldn’t tell.
In addition to Mike & Simeon Siamese, another aspect of the freak show that are the illustrators:
We started setting up some of the walls without having a clue how to do it. Foz like any good, right-brained illustrator was as clueless as his students. Dan mocked us as we begged him for help. Most of the time was spent just watching people screw in bolts while you waited around holding a big board and yawning.
Alex’s portfolio was lying around like a ghost while he was nowhere to be seen. Fernanda says to me
“Oh my god is that Alex’s? Lets go through it no?”
No, I say and she is immediately annoyed that I dare contradict her royal princessness. The photographers are playing a truly excellent selection of Bob Marley which makes me feel like I’m at a hippie picnic.
Foz dashes around in a sweaty blur, putting up frames with Gary as cool as ever, in tow pacing behind him. Roderick and Dave were helping various other people.
By 4pm I had mostly finished for that day and then we were just waiting around (moral support I guess) for the burly, sweaty men (very sexy) who were doing all the heavy lifting and drilling.
At about 5 o clock Geoff came running by reporting we needed to leave since there was a group of oldies who had a life drawing class. The aged were gritting their dentures in rage such an imposition, but Foz had managed to throw a wonderful strop with the gallery manager insisting that if he doesn’t let us stay till 9 there won’t be a show by Thursday.
The designers were furious,
“Why are the illustrators getting to stay??”
Someone asked me, extremely annoyed. Because we’re so special that’s why ha ha hah! Stupid designers and their Indesign skills and their great job prospects.
Rumor had it that the shy life model was sobbing in the ladies at the humiliation of having to strip down in front of men younger and more virile than 80.
We weren’t allowed either to drill or talk loudly in case the shock from the noise gave all the elderly sudden strokes. Apparently you need pin drop silence to be able to draw, I don’t know why, life drawing isn’t exactly brain surgery. I’d love to have taken them to Roderick’s life drawing, 3 movies running, one really weird one with loud beeping noises in a loop. They’d all have had group convulsions I’m sure.
Foz had instructed Anna to make sure Georgina stays calm and doesn’t panic. Anna doesn’t quite manage to succeed so Georgina has a mental meltdown over pinning up her prints. Distraught, she begs Gary
“Help me, please can you help me?”.
“Ooooooh help you??”
Gary replies gleefully and then does a little dance. Georgina is not amused in the slightest.
At 9 o clock we finally and thankfully head of to the pub. We are all hungry enough to eat our own arms.
After the tutors leave Fernanda, Ed, Martyn, Mike and I get into a furious impassioned debate about what constitutes ‘MAness’. According to Fer & Ed being even slightly indecisive dismisses you off the ‘MAness’ list. You must also be very committed to the group.
I contest that this is highly contestable. Being decisive is great but not all important (I believe) neither is group devotion. Ed and Fernanda start prepping for a war over the space on Day 2. They have planned a devious coup to oust out either Athier or Lisa (or both) from the space. As per their list neither are ‘MAness’ worthy.
Obviously I am looking forward to tomorrow. It’s bound to be highly entertaining.
Martyn doesn’t feel like heading back to his beloved Bedford so he stays over on the Ikea folding bed in my living room where we both eat Rustlers and tomatoes for a late dinner.
I stay up till 3 reprinting double page spreads in my portfolio because Foz made me. The older ones had a 1cm margin where the prints overlapped. Damn. I had hoped it wasn’t that noticeable but Foz was adamant they would annoy him (and we can’t have that.)
It would be a breeze reprinting if I could master the knack of making the stupid Epsom reject my posh thick printing paper less.
Printers are so bloody temperamental.