I think I’ve caught “artbollox” Doctor…

Every time I go out on a simple country walk I’m looking at the angles and searching for valid images that juxtapose with shapes and I’ve even been known to use the words: texture and validity.

Sounds like a serious case of artbollox to me. You need to cut down on places that might over stimulate your artistic tendencies. Have you been near someone who might have passed this on to you.

I’ve not been within 2 metres of anyone since April, apart from other people in my bubble.

Is anyone in your bubble of the tendency to talk incessantly about composition and mark making?

There’s Paul, it must be him. He claimed to be just a run of the mill cartoonist with no artistic leaning at all really, but lately he keeps talking about doing some proper drawings and I hear he’s been reading books on Van Goch. I’ve not been within 2 metres of him but I have noticed that he goes into strange reveries about cloud formations and light in the leaves lately when we go out for the odd walk. He also takes pictures with a camera.

You could have caught it off him, even two metres away. Especially if you listened to what he was saying and more to the point understood any of those art bollox words. like “juxtapose”, or worst of all “valid statement”. Your symptoms point to an early outbreak, tell me, are you considering investing in a new camera or anything like that? Up until now have you called your pictures snaps and been content with the images taken on your phone. Are you now referring to your snaps as photographs or worse: images. Have you been known recently to drop to the ground to get the right angle for a particular shot. Are you hyper critical of what you now call “my work”?

Well, Yes, and Paul’s even described what sort of camera I might like to look at.

Might that be a DSLR? If so this is getting more serious.

Yes. Should I be worried?

Well, I’ll need to run some tests, but although it is serious, that is indeed most of the problem.You are taking seriously everything that you might have made light of before. You may be even designing your food, it’s another symptom. Decorating food with micro salad and suggesting “assembling” a dish with tweezers, rather than just putting it on a plate. Not something you would formerly have done.

Other symptoms are saying things about the “spatial qualities of a room”* when there’s nothing remarkable about the room you happen to be sitting in.

You need to put your feet up, get in some ordinary food, like a steak and kidney pud and tinned custard, and try not to go too near anyone spouting this “art bollox” nonsense. You’ll soon feel better.

There’s a vibrancy and energy in this rendition by Van Goch, the juxtaposition of the two trees and the layered paint makes for a really pleasing whole, but is there evidence of the tortured soul in the frenzied application of the medium? It’s a significant piece in every respect.

  • “This room has great spatial qualities

This unforgettable statement was made at a Central Manchester Police Station by a dear friend of mine when he and two other art student friends were making a statement to a very dour detective back in the 60s. We were there as the other three had been threatened by thugs at our flat in Manchester, and I was there because they were looking for me at the time.( I’d gone home for the weekend) It was all to do with a dodgy property letting agency who had found a property for the four of us to rent. They were after money that we did not believe we owed.

Long story short, nothing much happened and fortunately none of my friends suffered more than an abiding dislike of letting agents and their large hairy friends.

We were sitting in front of dour detective in complete silence looking around this very dull room when Bryan came out with his unforgettable phrase. The detective stopped his painful longhand and said: ” What was that you said?”….Rather bashfully Bryan spoke out again ” This room has great spatial qualities”…..

Dour detective looked down at his longhand and just shook his head from side to side and muttered ” bollox” to himself.

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