Monday, June 04, 2018

Saatchi gallery barngains

It's a shame when the gallery or museum shop is more stimulating than the exhibits on show, but such was the case at the Saatchi gallery this weekend, whose current exhibition, Known Unknowns, failed to excite me or my daughter. The gallery shop, however, was full of wonders. Aside from charity shops, gallery and museum shops are my favourite kind of shops. I'd like to see a whole shopping centre of them, largely to save having to visit the galleries themselves, and to buy all my Christmas presents in one fell swoop. Imagine, shops of the British Museum, Tate, V&A, Natural History museum, etc, all under one roof. Retail and cultural bliss combined.

The Saatchi gallery shop has lots of reduced books, including The Field Guide to Typography: Typefaces in the Urban Landscape, a neat book which informs you which fonts are which in the city, from shop signs to train station signage. Reduced from £16.99 to £6.95.

In the gallery itself, French Lebanese artist Mouna Rebeiz has gone to town on the freebie front. Her exhibition The Trash-ic or Trash in the Face of Beauty, is giving away lavish A3 catalogues of the exhibition, as well as an English edition of the French art magazine connaissance des arts (usual price: £7.80), which features – yup – her exhibition. I don't know who's paying for this free promotion for Rebeiz (presumably not her). Finally, Saatchi's surprisingly consistently boring gallery magazine, Art  & Music, now celebrating its tenth anniversary, was also picked up for free. Oh, the gallery is also free to visit, should you feel the need to go.

I don't know, I just figured as my daughter (almost 12) is into girl power, she might like the exhibition of 17 female artists. I didn't think it would be exploring mainly adult themes – spurting bodily fluids, sex, human trafficking – and my daughter wasn't impressed. Some of it actually looked quite interesting, but we had to rush through it – there was a shop to get to.

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