Jack Davidson’s Alchemical Photographic Etchings

“I’ve never been a darkroom kid,” says British photographer Jack Davison. “I tried, [but] it just didn’t appeal to me.” With a new solo exhibition, Photographic Etchings, opening in north London’s Cob Gallery, Davison is instead reflecting on the tactile wonders and alchemical magic of photogravure, a labour-intensive, high-cost alternative to the darkroom that lies at the heart of this exhibition.


Jack Davison, Untitled (JD-08), 2022© the artist, courtesy of Cob Gallery

… what is it about snarling or perhaps just snapping or perhaps just skulking in a menacing way?… and depicted in a shadowy, high contrast way… see Daido Moriyama’s stray dog

Somaya Critchlow, the Artist Reconfiguring the Black Female Nude

12 of Critchlow’s new paintings and drawings are now on display at Maximillian William gallery in London, in an exhibition called Afternoon’s Darkness. A sense of the macabre lingers across these new works, in which Black women are depicted revelling in their solitude – nude, semi-nude or in costume – backdropped by dimly-lit, domestic interiors.


Count Me Out, 2022© Somaya Critchlow. Image courtesy the artist and Maximillian William, London. Photography: Prudence Cuming Associates.

… increasingly, women artists are portraying women in ways that do invite the male gaze… the male gaze is such a convoluted gaze… is it appropriate or not in this “hashtag me too” era?… at the end of the day, we feel what we feel when we look at images of beautiful women partially or fully undressed… it’s what we do with those feelings that matters… do we treat such images as gateway invitations to the abuse of womanhood or do we simply appreciate the beauty of the female body?… have we matured as a culture?… patriarchy is alive and well… there are risks to trying to break through to a new attitude…

Henry Miller on Friendship and the Relationship Between Creativity and Community

This vital relationship between creativity and connection has been tensed and twisted in the era of Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook, where self-marketing so readily masquerades as “friend”-ship.

… i have all but abandoned FB and Instagram, using the former to check in with “friends” now and again and the latter to post an image here and there… i never did have much use of twitter… these days i can be found on Vero (@smbk) and Micro.blog (@mbkriegh)…

“Usually the artist has two life-long companions, neither of his own choosing… — poverty and loneliness. To have a friend who understands and appreciates your work, one who never lets you down but who becomes more devoted, more reverent, as the years go by, that is a rare experience. It takes only one friend… to work miracles.” Henry Miller

Disgruntled American Tourist Smashes Roman Busts at the Vatican

An American man visiting the Vatican threw two Ancient Roman busts to the ground in a fit of rage after being informed that he could not see the Pope, Italian newspapers report.

… ok, the headline, “Disgruntled American”?… click bait really… when i first read it, it seemed unfortunately natural to think of any American as being an angry child…

The man who vandalized the sculptures, aged 65 and apparently “psychologically distressed,” seemed to have been visiting the Vatican alone and was turned over to Italian authorities the same day. He received an aggravated property damage charge and was subsequently released.

… and then i read the bit about “psychologically distressed” and wondered why not this headline… “Psychologically Distressed Tourist Smashes Roman Busts at the Vatican”?… then we would discover the tourist was American… which fact is more important?… “American” if you think or want people to think all Americans are childish rage-holics, and “psychologically distressed” if we are talking about the general propensity in humanity for there to be people not in their right mind…

Find My Friends… an app that tells you where your friends are at any given moment in time?… beyond the obvious serendipitous being in close by places at the same time… meet up!… there are the also obvious ways this might not be a good idea…

I feel so unispired. Inspiration. Can I have some of yours?

… my wife is a huge fan of David Bowie, me, not so much, but i love Nick Cave!… and i love his Red Hand Files in which he answers questions sent to him by his fans… that he seems to have his head on really straight helps too…

In my experience, inspiration is not something that finds you, or offers itself to you, nor for that matter is faith. Inspiration and faith are similar in so far as they both ask something of us. They each require real and constant practical application. For me, inspiration comes only when I practice certain things regularly and rigorously. I must commit fully to the task in hand, sit down each day, pick up my pencil (actually it is a medium black or blue Bic Biro) and get to work. It is not exactly toiling down the coal mines, but it is labour enough, and I undertake it through the good times and the bad, through the dry periods and the periods of abundance, and I keep on going regardless of my successes or failures. Inspiration comes because I put in the work.

Blue Rev, Alvvays

The Toronto band’s third album is a triumph of power pop, a densely layered, witty, blithe, and beautiful record that sets a new benchmark for the genre.