June 10th, 2014


Artist Date With Viktor Popkov...

Feckin' hot again; less steamy, thank gods, but pollen-loaded. Went to Somerset House to see the Beryl Bainbridge paintings, only to find that show was shut today. There was some really good stuff to be seen, though. Free, too.


The most impressive was the show of paintings by Viktor Popkov, who I'd never heard of. He started working at the end of the Stalinist regime, and made beautiful depictions of soulful workers, lonesome old war widows, fellow artists, etc. He had a great way with dogs and seagulls, too. He was only in his 40's when he was shot dead in an absurd encounter with a drunken security guard; so tragic, he was terrific.
I wandered on into the Museum of Water show. You had to go through a lot of winding alleys out back, and several people gave up, but the architecture is lovely, and with the old cobblestones and stuff, it has a nice ghostly vibe. It was also cool. Inside there are cases full of bottles donated by members of the public with water of some importance or interest to them.
I've already been beaten several times to my first idea, of bringing in leftover water of the night before from Amazy's drinking bowl. There were also more holy water bottles than I would have expected, including one from Knock. It seemed like a bit of a wank to start, but I got quite into it. The labels were mostly hard to read, but many of the ones I could decipher were quite entertaining, even moving, like one that purported to contain tears from the day somebody's partner died. Unlikely, but I was still touched.
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