It was the grand opening of Blank Space and our first in-house exhibition Blank Expression last night, and instead of writing yesterday’s blog I was serving wine, beer and vodka to hordes of thirsty art lovers. After weeks of cleaning, painting, administrating and installing by Mark Devereux, John Leyland and the rest of the Blank Media Collective, we finally got to open to the public. I was elated by the huge turnout, and extremely high quality and wide variety of the art on display. In all ways it should be judged a success. Now let’s keep our eyes open for press coverage. Firstly there was Steph’s (Blank Media Communications Co-ordinator) appearance on BBC Manchester here (scroll to 2hr, 47min approx.), then on Sunday John and Steph will be appearing in the studio at some other radio station. Keep your eye out, and get down to Blank Space as soon as you can.
Now that the gallery spaces and all the public bits are immaculate and serene, we can get down to business sorting out the store room and office space, both of which are currently piled to the rafters with paint pots, random wood, tool boxes, old furniture, severed heads, pickled hands, stolen car parts, second-hand coffins, tanks of industrial waste, missing children, flotsam, jetsam, lagan and derelict. The office space I long for is unusable, but after a bit of intense reshuffling will be both habitable and functional. Then we can all get down to the business of 2011; trying to take over the world.
After the launch we retired to Sand Bar to congratulate ourselves, discuss politics, religion, race relations, space stations, and whether or not England should return to the gold standard. I was accused of being a loony Liberal, by a Labour-voting drone (you know who you are J), and best thing ever – I bought some pork scratching which I’ve just remembered I didn’t eat; they are in my jacket pocket waiting for me, horray! Forget the huge success of the Blank Space launch; the highlight is definitely the pork scratching.
Then I got the bus back to Withington, down Oxford Road, got a delicious cheeseburger on the way home and... oh, another memory returns. In the takeaway there was a weird dirty fellow. He was standing in the door wearing a very colourful tracksuit top. He looked rough and old and had no teeth; in fact he looked like the Viz character Eight Ace. As I went in he asked me if I wanted to buy any DVDs. A student-type lad came in just after me, and he also didn’t want to buy any DVDs from Eight Ace. This guy was just sort of stumbling about in the takeaway (the guy behind the counter didn’t seem to care), then he started singing at the top of his voice. The amazing thing was that he was a very good singer; he had a melodic tenor voice, but the volume and his repetition of the same meaningless passage removed any pleasure to be had from his singing. The student looked at me and rolled his eyes. Then Eight Ace pushed passed the student, ducked under the counter flap, and strolled into the kitchen, never to return. What am I to make of all this?