Squirrels in Aspic

Call me an old fuddy duddy who doesn’t have his finger on the pulse, but for years I have worried about the loopier aspects of modern art. I have come to realise, however, that if you can’t beat them, there may be money to be made in joining them…

Welcome ladies and gentlemen, millionaires, billionaires, trillionaires and squillionaires. Welcome thrice welcome one and all! to my Thrown Together Old Tat Exhibition. TTOTE at the Tate, as I call it. Guides to the various exhibits may be purchased for a mere £1,000 in the foyer. Better still, why not give me £10,000 and opt for a Personal Guided Tour of Tat, featuring Me as Captain Limey, The Artist Himself? What’s that you say? Do I have change for a Rolex? I regret that I do not carry money around with me, as I am currently in my antidisestablishmentarianist blue-spotted neo-solipsist period. Notice how I am using negative space to such good effect that money cannot escape. American Express? Thank you, sir. That will do nicely.

Gather round, people! This first exhibit, on the left, is one of which I am particularly proud. I call it Squirrel in Aspic. Note how I have subverted the form by using an aardvark where you were, perhaps, expecting a squirrel. Also tomato ketchup where your poor, disoriented minds were predicting aspic. No need to panic, madam…it is quite dead. Please don’t worry a little aardvark never hurt anyone, ha-ha. What’s that in the aardvark’s claws, sir? Well might you ask. It is a bus ticket from Southall to Wembley Park. The 92 bus. That is particularly revealing, don’t you think? Of what? Of what indeed, madam! Exactly so! You might be interested to know that Bono was particularly taken by this piece, although he has visited several times and, to be honest, he still hasn’t found what he’s looking for…

Exhibit Number Two: I am particularly proud of this one. To the untutored eye it may look a lot like a My Young Scientist’s Junior Microscope, but I call it Ceci n’est pas le Microscope Junior de mon Jeune Scientifique. Notice how there is nothing under the object lens. Microscopic nothingness, and yet and yet! there is somethingness. Imaginary somethingness. Somethingness in the eye of the beholder, but no beholder beholden to behold. Does a tree fall in a forest when no one is looking? Is a My Young Scientist’s Junior Microscope beholding nothingness or somethingness when no one is beholding? These are the deep questions I ask of you, but I need nothing in return save your awed silence. And a bid over my reserve price of twenty five million pounds. No less a person than J.K. Rowling was hemming and hawing over this very piece the other day, wondering whether she should buy before seeing the other exhibits. “Please,” I told her, “I have no wish to harry: potter!”

Ah now! On your right is Exhibit Number Three. Pride does not begin to describe the emotion this evokes in me. I call it Hadron Collider in B Minor. You’re right, sir. It does look uncommonly like a grain of sand…how perceptive of you. But look closer! Examine the universe within the grain of sand. The atoms, the protons, the neutrons, the electrons, the positrons, the hadrons, the quarks, strangeness and charm, and there! hiding behind the quantum sofa: is that could it be? a Higgs boson? In this grain of sand Mother Nature is playing poker with the universe and she’s holding Aces and Kings. A question at the back? Dawlish, madam…in Devon…the beach. Why that grain? It spoke to me. No…quite literally it spoke to me. I am an ARTIST, madam. It happens to me all the time. The price of this one is fifty million pounds, but you’ll have to hurry because Roman Abramovich is very interested. Still. Don’t let me Russia. Ha-ha!

Incidentally, ladies and gentlemen, these bad jokes are all part of the exhibition. I call them Badly Dressed Flotsam Essaying Cheese At Midnight and I am particularly proud of the way they take pixie space and mould it into thirteen-dimensional hyperdrivel. A price, madam? A price? How dare you! Can you not see they are priceless? I wouldn’t sell them for all the noughts in a Lehman’s Investment Portfolio…

Really you have tired me out with your crass insensitivity. I’m sorry. I need to lie down. Leave your bids at the door and show yourselves out.

You rich, fawning, tasteless bastards.


About captainlimey

Captain Limey is the alter ego of a mild mannered idiot. He can also be found on Twitter, either as @CaptainLimey or in his new guise as a purveyor of Gangland Mummy Porn in @50ShadesOfKray. Despite a magnificent costume, specially created for him by his mother, he has no super powers, unless you count the ability of his skin to eat through metal, given enough time. This has led to the buggeration of several watches of his acquaintance but has not thus far proved harmful to other lifeforms. The Captain hopes you will enjoy his blogged musings and forgive the occasional rant against the world at large, and idiot dictators in particular. They really get his gander up.
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