Tuesday, 19 October 2010


I was going to post something about visiting the Gaugin exhibition at Tate Modern, but Lois has beaten me to it.
Lois is my wife, in case anyone who reads this stuff hasn't guessed it yet. Lois is very intolerant of Gluten and spends a lot of time experimenting with making, mostly baking, gluten free foods, which is why her review of the art seems to spend more time in the cafe than looking at the paintings. If anyone reads her blogs I feature as Mr Taster - maybe I'll use that as a nom-de-plume some day.
If you haven't visited the Gaugin yet then I'd say allow quite a lot of time. There is a lot of material about him that takes time to read, especially as you can expect to be buffeted by the crowd washing by. Like Lois I found the painting drab, I don't know why I was expecting more light, something about Tahiti, romance and all that, but it is just not there. I was also surprised to find that the paintings were almost all much smaller that I expected. OK so that in some ways is good, they'd fit in your living room, unlike some of the things I've seen in Tate Modern.
On the other hand none of it made me laugh, or cry, or say WOW! So why did I go? I'm a sucker for a good story I guess and there is something of that. Gaugin seemed to spend his life reinventing himself and almost living a fiction. He was obviously convinced from an early age that he was a genius. I can't think of any other reason why he would go on painting such dull paintings while he was having such an interesting life.

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