Upcoming Events – April
Art Angels - Los Angeles
The first half of April will be big for us in America. On Thursday we open our month long show in Los Angeles and I am so pleased that my family and a good number of local friends are coming to the spacious and well known Art Angels gallery in the heart of West Hollywood.
Given that we print down the road on Venice Boulevard, there is no easier place for us to exhibit but equally there is no more demanding an audience than a Hollywood crowd. It is a tough city in which to make a name for yourself and it has broken many a dream. We will never be defensive in LA - it is time to be on the front foot and attack.
Sotheby's Auction - New York
Next week, the second bestselling image of my career (after Mankind) - The Wolf of Main Street - comes under the hammer at Sotheby's in New York. It is the last image available in the edition and we know it will go for a very substantial price.
I will be in LA with my team but we will watch online with huge interest. It is lot 257, the auction starts at 11 am New York time, so I guess we are talking between 1 and 2 pm. It is a huge honour to be auctioned at Sotheby's New York and I do slightly pinch myself when I see the two photographers with whom I share the brochure page.
Please click here for more information on the auction.
MAMM Exhibition - Moscow
An old girlfriend of mine once took me to task on the fact that I was all shades of grey on topical issues. I avoided confrontation on geopolitical matters of angst and preferred to sit on the fence. My view was that since Brexit and Scottish Independence both came down to the wire and that so many smart people voted either way, there must be some semblance of doubt on what was right - fiscally and spiritually. Quite simply, there was no slam dunk killer point either way. Manifestly the same was true with Trump/Clinton. On all three issues, I was indeed shades of grey. This is boring but it does mean that when I have a black or a white, it is given marginally more attention.
I now have my airtime. I am not political and never will be but no collective in the UK has disappointed me more than politicians. Bankers have been given a bad rap since 2008, but some of this is emotional and broad brushed. We all make mistakes and high earners are easy targets. The true offenders have paid a high price and rightly so, but the majority have been unfairly demonised.
However, I despair at some of the hubristic, populist, cavalier and downright reckless comments from our politicians. They would never get a job at Goldman Sachs - they are simply not good enough.
Our exhibition next month in Moscow will be a highlight of my 30 year career and our hosts in Russia have been wonderful and considered in all that they do. In February, when I arrived at my complimentary hotel right by Red Square and the Kremlin, I gave my bags to the concierge and did not even enter the building. Instead, I wandered around in a day dream transfixed with the visuals in front of me. I was caught in the roots of history and felt no chill despite it being minus 20 degrees. It was spectacular and I have never before had such a frisson or rush in my life.
It is bewildering to me that Boris Johnson should make an analogy between Putin’s 2018 World Cup and Hitler’s 1936 Olympics. When I visited MAMM in February (the esteemed museum that will host my show) there was a wonderfully curated exhibition of photographs from the Second World War - particularly from the siege of Stalingrad. I found it very emotional as clearly did the thousands of Muscovites who visited every day. Less we forget, Russia lost 26 million people in the war and it was their resolve that ultimately defeated Nazi Germany. Britain lost 450,000 - a huge number of people but let’s find perspective. The Darkest Hour was a very watchable film and Gary Oldman deserved the Oscar, but we should never forget who won the war for the UK, America, France and the free world. It was not Churchill.
The events in Salisbury are very uncomfortable and not without precedent, but I will arrive in Moscow embarrassed by the comments of a very senior UK politician and I will apologise. I know that in doing so I will speak for many British people that owe Russia and its people a great deal. My old girlfriend might forgive me then.