Well, that was rather fortuitous that Christopher Nolan released a movie about the evacuation at Dunkirk almost a year after I had visited the place, which basically gives me an excuse to actually write about my experience at the museum. Mind you, there actually isn’t all that much in Dunkirk, and don’t expect a place swarming with tourists or anything, it really isn’t that sort of town. Sure, it does have a beach, but that is basically about it. In fact, when I was sitting in the hotel lobby with a beer and my laptop, at least two couples approached the concierge and asked them if there was anything to actually do (at least at night). Mind you, the hotel that I stayed at was pretty shocking, and they also double-charged me for my room, so not surprisingly I gave it a pretty low score on Yelp.
The Nude – Is It Art pt 2
Well, if you haven’t read the first part of this post then I recommend that you do, namely because I explore the history of the nude, and also how the concept changed in the early 20th Century as we moved from the public to the private space. The other thing is that I am running through is the idea of where the line is drawn, and what we would consider offensive. One idea has suggested as to whether the image is sensual or not, yet there are works of art hanging on the walls of art galleries for everybody to see that are incredibly sensual. The other thing is that we are probably much more relaxed with regards to the naked body that the British of the Victorian era were, who were renown for being rather prude.
The History of Talking – Communications Museum
There certainly were quite a few museums along that stretch of road on the southern bank of the Mainz, and it was always going to be a bit of a toss up as to which ones we would end up visiting. As I suggested previously I was somewhat glad that the World Cultures Museum was closed because, well, the more I thought about it the more I realised that I wasn’t particularly interested in seeing a museum focused on world cultures – I personally prefer to experience them first hand as opposed to in a museum, though I have written a post on Australian Aboriginals since there was a room dedicated to them at the Museum of South Australia.
Saint Joan – Europe’s Turning Point
It seems as if there is a resurgence of interest in the plays of George Bernard Shaw, though when I say resurgence I am referring to having seen three plays of his over the past three years, which is significant because I pretty much haven’t seen any of his plays previously. That probably has a lot to do with not actually knowing about him, or having any appreciation of his work prior to purchasing a copy of Pygmalion and proceeding to read it. The other problem is that the lack of options when it comes to theatre in Australia, but then again it does teach me to keep my eyes open. However, the stage on screen series that are now being played at various cinemas around Australia helps a lot as well. So, when I discovered that Saint Joan was going to be one of the films shown I took the day off work, made my way down to the Palace Brighton Bay, and began to treat myself to another play that I am not expecting to see again any time soon.
Shakesperian Connundrums – or are They?
I’ve just finished reading a book, Henry V, War Criminal and Other Shakespearian Puzzles, which explores a number of puzzles, and apparent contradictions, in some (or in fact most) of Shakespeare’s plays. I guess when you happen to be this hugely famous author any little mistake, or apparent mistake, is suddenly scrutinised extensively, and debated over by academics of all stripes. Then we have somebody like Shakespeare, who in many cases is viewed as not just one of, but the greatest, writer that the English language has ever produced, and we are speaking of a language that has produced countless numbers of great writers. However while writers such as Charles Dickens can produce a love/hate relationship, Shakespeare seems to be loved by all (except for those high school students who are forced to study his plays).
The Seasons of the Greeks
The annoying thing about my trip to the Leibeighaus (which happens to be the home of Frankfurt’s Sculpture museum) is that I didn’t end up seeing any of the permanent sculptures. Mind you, they did have a major exhibition here, and I didn’t actually make any effort to go and look for the permanent collection, and it wasn’t until afterwards that I discovered that there was more to this museum than the exhibition that I ended up seeing (actually, now that I found the photos, I realised that I did see the permanent exhibition). Mind you, it isn’t a huge collection and the only reason that people go to the museum is to see one of the temporary exhibitions – but then again that is the main drawcard for most museums, though the other drawcard is the tourists (and it can be annoying when you travel all the way to Europe only to discover that all of the Renoirs are out on loan).
Gutemberg and the Power of the Press
It is difficult to pinpoint what the most influential invention that has ever been developed actually is, though Gutenberg’s movable type printing press is certainly up there. No doubt the inventions that have been the most influential tend to be the oldest, such as the domestication of animals, farming, the wheel, and of course the alphabet, and anybody who has played Sid Meyer’s Civilisation will no doubt be familiar with the technology tree, that is that technological developments come about from earlier developments, which in turn come from even earlier ones.
Richard II – A King Without Friends
Well, it seems that within a period of two months I have managed to see Richard II twice, the first was a DVD that I had ordered of the Royal Shakespeare Company production starring David Tennant, and the second one being a production by the Globe Theatre. Actually, I had no idea that the Globe version was going to be showing at one of the local (or not so local as the case may be because it did take an hour and a half, by train, to get from my home to the cinema) cinemas when I watched the DVD a little while back, though as I have mentioned in my previous post (though having a look at the date that it was posted – 5th May – I’d probably be more accurate in suggesting that I watched it quite some time ago), the lack of good plays in Australia means that I am more than willing to make the trek to see another version.
Ajax in Iraq
While I have been to a few shows at the Adelaide Fringe Festival, in my mind it is more of a two-week party than a showcase of theatrical performances that are generally not picked up by the mainstream theatre (or are simply so amateurish that the mainstream won’t touch them). From what I recall of my time in Adelaide the Fringe basically consisted of an opening parade, the Garden of Unearthly Delights which was little more than a number of bars, a Ferris wheel, and tents where you will encounter the weird and wonderful. Mind you, as the Fringe has grown in popularity, so have the number of areas that are attempting to mimic the Garden of Unearthly Delights.
Silk Road by the Sea
Well, since I am finishing off layover in Singapore I felt that it might be appropriate to write a post that is somewhat uniquely Asian in flavour (though at this stage I am unsure if I am actually going to get around to completing it, let alone posting it, before I return to Australia – as it turned out, I didn’t). Anyway, we decided to visit the aquarium on the island of Sentosa, and as some museums are apt to do (though I’m not really sure if you can call it a museum, it is probably more like a zoo for fish, though we don’t call them zoos for fish, we call them aquariums – but I digress) they had a display at the entrance to the aquarium, looking at the various ports of call a ship would visit on its way back from China back in the days of the sailing ships.