Friday, 3 May 2013

Last-Week Links: 3 May 2013

Pauline Boty was one of the reasons I started writing this blog, back in February 2009. I'd just watched the Pop Goes The Easel documentary and couldn't believe this gorgeous, funny, talented lady wasn't a household name - or, at least, someone I'd come across in four years of studying art history. This Last-Year Girl about her is the second thing I ever posted (and is in drastic need of an update). The post still gets a steady stream of traffic though, especially when someone like Adam Curtis picks up on her story. It's been less of a stream, more of a gushing river this week, I think due to this story in the Observer. Wolverhampton Art Gallery are holding the first public exhibition devoted to her work, and they're hunting for some of her major paintings which seem to have vanished from the public eye, particularly Scandal '63 which is based on the famous Lewis Morley image of Christine Keeler (he also took the photograph above). If found, according to the article, "it would also, a growing body of art historians hope, help return its creator to her rightful place at the heart of the era's explosion of sexual and creative liberation, and bring to an end decades of 'wilful and conscious' exclusion by the male-dominated art establishment." Hurrah indeed to the end of that (but what took them so long?). There's also a fabulous 'Pauline Boty in Pictures' gallery on the Guardian: most of which is now on my Pinterest account.

More excitement as, thanks to the Teenage blog (though I now realise that Modculture flagged it up ages ago), as there's a new Northern Soul film coming out later this year which actually looks like it might be quite good. It's directed by Elaine Constantine, and there's a book being published - based on Northern Soul fan submissions - to accompany its release.

The film release everyone seems to be excited about at the moment is, of course, The Great Gatsby. I enjoyed this Vogue piece on how Prada pieces were reworked to create costumes for the film, like this sketch inspired by the Spring/Summer 2011 collection. My personal Gatsby film obsession appears to be this scarf. If you are inspired to spend like a Fitzgerald, perhaps you could learn a thing from F. Scott's original ledgers which went online this week.

Is 'Unikko' one of the most famous patterns in the world? Retro Renovation did a lovely piece on the designer of those happy flowers, Maija Isola. She designed more than 500 patterns for Marimekko over 36 years, 28 of which are still in production today. Will Cath Kidston's Antique Rose or Red Dot pattern last so well? I was amazed to hear the company has already been around for 20 years. Life Style Etc did a very nice interview with Kidston about the brand's birthday. I love the thought of her future patterns being inspired by the Bowie exhibition! The brand name of another yet company who became famous through their patterns, Horrockses, is currently up for sale, and Liz wrote a fascinating piece speculating on the possible implications of the sale. 

The map print on this 1970s Chloe dress is another amazing piece of pattern. Thanks to one of Susie's Style Bubble posts I found out that Merchant Archive have just launched an online shop, and it's full of amazing vintage from all decades. A 1930s embroidered coat? A 1930s cropped floral jacket? A 1940s stain glass print dress? Yes please, yes please, yes please. This is fantasy shopping at its very best. 

And, finally, on the subject of vintage, The Rough Guide To Vintage London launched on Wednesday and I've written a piece about it - and the delights of vintage shopping in the capital - for the Rough Guides blog. I think the Merchant Archive silk dress above shows how far my vintage tastes have been honed since my first Camden Market purchase! 

Have a lovely bank holiday weekend, whatever you are up to. I want to go to the Modern Movement fair at Brockwell Lido AND the Barbara Jones display at the Whitechapel AND the Blumenfeld Studio photography exhibition at Somerset House AND have a proper lie in. Weekend fun times.

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