I was reminded of two things last week:-
What a ridiculously, hilariously bad film 'Creep' is. If you haven't seen it, the monster is called 'Craig'...and it gets worse...(come to think of it, I have known some monstrous Craigs in my time...)
The second thing I was reminded of is how much I adore and admire Tracey Emin.
I didn't mean to emulate her when I was at art college, and I did get slightly offended by comparisons, I mean, I'd never leave my bedroom in that state, the Monica that I am these days, but looking back...
Tracey was featured on BBC's 'Who Do You Think You Are?', investigating the maternal side of her family, finding a history of reform school boys and artisan gypsies (sadly I don't think my family tree bears any such romantic fruits. My Grandparents thought our family ran a workhouse. My Dad disputes this...)
The woman makes me smile. She's like the bad bits of me amplified. Drunk on TV. Back in the vodka days I must confess there were times my bedroom might have been slightly like hers. The tears, the ramblings.
My unconscious channelling of her aesthetic themes has at times included the use of text (I LOVE text in visual art), the use of traditionally feminine crafts taken out of context and given unexpected, inappropriate or sinister meanings, and self as art. I think I'm self obsessed...Ms. Emin's work is as intensely personal as it comes. Literally laid bare.
Her collected writings 'Strangeland' is about the most elating and abject in-equal-measures bunch of words one could ever cast their eyes and their heart over. Makes me wish I'd continued to keep diaries (possibly would have if it hadn't been for little brothers' prying eyes).
I read an old diary recently. THAT was depressing!
I was genuinely heartbroken when I learned of the fire at the Momart warehouse in 2004, in which Emin's controversial appliqued tent 'Everyone I Ever Slept With' was destroyed. The tabloids had a field day... "Didn't millions cheer as this 'rubbish' went up in flames?". It annoyed me that so many people took 'slept with' as the euphemism it is commonly used for, and not in it's literal sense -a tribute to everyone Emin ever shared a bed with, including family members, I feel is a really sweet sentiment. But it's that play on words and opening herself up to misinterpretation which only enhances the art.
Her gorgeously sensitive line drawings make me know I really need to get my sketchbook out more. Whether she's depicting dainty birds, copulating couples, or said dainty bird perched on a penis. Come on, you gotta see the funny side?!
She's everything I wanna be when I grow up, and everything I won't be because I haven't got the guts. And even though I'm teetotal, I'm sat in my bedroom, listening to Hole, thinking I'm eighteen and getting all post-feminist on your ass, filling art shows with photos of me and plaster casts of contraceptives...(anyone who saw my 18+ art foundation final show knows what I'm talking about...!)
Oh, and just so you know, I will be wearing leopard print 'til I'm 90.