Foreshadowing in the Art of Bojack Horseman

CW: Discussions of death, suicide and drug use. 

This post contains major spoilers for the Bojack Horseman series finale.

Bojack Horseman is one of my all-time favourite shows. The universe it creates is so wonderfully fun, and the animators do a spectacular job at including jokes in all of the scenery. As an art-lover, one of the things I really love about the show is how it features paintings from real life, reimagined in the Bojack Universe. Sometimes, the works are just implanted into the show. Other times, characters from the show are added, or the works are included in a specific scene to add to the overall message and plot. The reinterpretations of David Hockney, Portrait of an Artist (Pool with Two Figures), 1972 and John Everett Millais, Ophelia, 1851-52 foreshadow major events. In this post, I’ll explain their role in the show and why Bojack Horseman is one of the greatest cinematic universes out there. 

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Researching the photographer Lisel Haas

Recently, I presented at the ‘Another Eye: Women refugee photographers after 1933’ conference, which was done in partnership with Four Corners. I talked about Lisel Haas (1898-1989), a German-born Jewish photographer who settled in Birmingham in 1938. I had been introduced to her work during a module in my final year undergrad, and I was asked to put together a presentation for a seminar about her. I initially was just going to throw together a simple biographical account of her life and work, but found myself questioning the narratives framing her work, and so my research developed into something much more interesting. This post is an edited version of my presentation script.

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Racism, homophobia, and images of desire: Depictions of queer black men in 1980s film and photography

CW: Racism, Homophobia, Erotic/Pornographic Photography. This article contains explicit images.

In this article I analyse the work of two artists in the 1980s and consider how queer black men were portrayed in art in the 1980s, with a specific look at how desire is depicted. I am focusing on the film Looking for Langston 1989 by Isaac Julien (born 1960), a black-British filmmaker who identifies as gay, and considering this in relation to Black Book 1986 by white gay photographer Robert Mapplethorpe (1946-1989).

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Friendly Conversations About Art: Dominic Powell talks to me about Ballet Mécanique

In this series, I will be getting people to pick an artwork, tell me about it, and have a conversation. Through this series, I aim to make talking about art more fun, casual, and accessible to those without an arts background.

Continue reading Friendly Conversations About Art: Dominic Powell talks to me about Ballet Mécanique

Blue: Derek Jarman, the AIDS crisis, and the trouble of public narrative

CW: AIDS crisis, homophobia, death, discussion of suicide (paragraph 4)

Blue 1993 is a highly personal and intimate film. It is a heartbreakingly honest account of someone knowingly reaching the end of their life as they slowly and painfully lose the battle against AIDS. The film consists entirely of a single colour, International Klein blue, and a blurred figure is occasionally seen. The script is read aloud over the blue screen.

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Friendly Conversations About Art: Amber Thomson talks to me about Olafur Eliasson

Featured Image: Giorgio Boato, Danish Pavilion, 50th Biennale di Venezia, Venice, 2003. https://olafureliasson.net/archive/artwork/WEK101676/room-for-one-colour 04/05/20

In this series, I will be getting people to pick an artwork, tell me about it, and have a conversation. Through this series, I aim to make talking about art more fun, casual, and accessible to those without an arts background.

Continue reading Friendly Conversations About Art: Amber Thomson talks to me about Olafur Eliasson

International Non-Binary People’s Day: Personal Reflections on Queerness and Identity

So I’ve missed International Non-Binary People’s Day (14th July), but I still wanted to write about it. I had forgotten when it was, and was surprised but really happy to see that when I logged on to social media last Tuesday, there were so many people posting and celebrating it. Non-Binary people get so little representation, are often forgotten, and misunderstood. Having a day of complete visibility and acceptance is so needed for many. 

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