Wednesday, 3 November 2010

Norman Parkinson II

Here is another great shot by Norman Parkinson. There is always something magical in the composition of his pictures; something whimsical and alluring. This shot is taken in the nineteen fifties/sixties and yet the attitude that it portrays could be a hundred years back from now. Tub-thumping? Yep, that's right and if, Jed, I am a grumpy old man, I am proud of it.


  1. I had a female friend at Uny; I knew her before too; she came from Bath and was quite a beauty; a real lady killer; you know long black hair running down the length of her back; excellent figure; intelligent; all done up in buying and selling antiques; oh my word she never lost the taste for good things; anyhow, what happened was she got sick to death of men; she fell in love with an editor (a woman) and she wanted to change everything about herself. Time came when we were all living in london that she even wanted her hair cut; friends took her to a posh hairdresser in the Ritz hotel i think; I met her and waited. The hairdresser just couldnt cut off her hair; he more or less trimmed it and then put her in curlers and gave her a wave; she smiled, paid him and promptly went into the womens loo and wept. Look at me she said, I look like a barbie doll; this always happens; men see me in a certain way and I am trapped in their images of me.

    Well I took her down the kings Road; we went to a trendy hairdresser; I paid for the second cut and she came out with a bob; very liz taylor sort of look but by God she was happy.

    I guess what I am trying to say is that whether we you or anybody else loves it or hates it the human spirit will out. It did for Beethoven for example; just think of the way he revolutionised music and it was loud and crashing and contempary and new and bloody inexplicable and to many (even then) fantastic.

    I love the rap; the pure poetry; the prosody of it; the passion and the fervour. Make no mistake; fashion, art, youth cultures, eras, every kind of expression never would develop if it remained merely pretty, familiar, law abiding and conventionally attractive.

    Get over it Storey

  2. As for Archer I'm surprised you don't keep better company; last time I saw him was in the dock at Bow Street Mags on a charge of perjury

    He may like pretty things but not it seems telling the truth on oath

  3. Jeff Archer is not company that I 'keep'; although he used to be good buddies, in his Dover days, with some neighbours here; who say that he is, basically, a good egg (reflected in his charity work). It seems to me that he was prepared to lie on oath to escape what was undoubtedly a fit-up: I don't condone him but I think that the sometime 'friend' and former employee who 'shopped' him were just as bad.

    On the rest of it: first, I doubt your claim that your friend was clever, because the hairdresser at The Ritz is the obtusest choice if you want a bulldog dyke look; secondly fascism could be justified by its supporters on the basis that it is an expression of the 'human spirit'; thirdly, by "get over it", I suppose that you mean that you feel more entitled to your views than I am to mine: which is simply further evidence (if it were needed) of the ignorance of the age.

  4. I shall leave little jeffrey to you

    My friend did not want a bulldog dyke look; this simply is the worst sort of language and sterotyping; silly talk; she was moving through stages of change; she just wanted a short haircut not another macho conjured image be it scalped or shimmering.

    By get over it I mean calm down and live and let live; I am far from ignorant; You on the other hand are seething because your views are gently challenged; I say again, get over it Storey

    By the way if radicalism in artistic expression is tantamount to fascism in your book tell me wont you who is the bloody author?????????

  5. I am not seething at all. I think that it livens the place up to have a lippy, chippy socialist onboard. Moreover, unlike many bloggers, I publish all comments, except those that are obviously meant as personal messages to me.

  6. Lippy?