allen jones and clockwork orange

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that photograph above is mary in the mens toilets at the royal academy of arts.
the lighting in this wonderfully well considered interior is so dramatic,it felt wrong not to take a picture of her in there for sharing with you.

we were having soup with sandwich over the road in a converted wolseley car showroom,
and while surveying tables, i saw peter blake sitting ten yards away.
yep,the very one..that chappy who did the artwork for sgt peppers lonely hearts club band.
this got my feet wondering if he’d just been to the allen jones exhibition at the academy.

do you know who allen jones is?
well he’s of the same english generation of pop artists as peter blake,and caused a right hoo haa when he unveiled new sculptures to an easily shockable public in 1960’s britain.
the feminists were furious..their beef was how allen’s provocative pieces of art objectify woman. i personally have no problem with objects objectifying…these are forays into art. they’re not living breathing humans.
from what i can tell, anything beautiful runs risk of becoming objectified anyway … moreover, it’s pretty much a form of flattery.
a thing i really like about those sculptures is how they raise a sparky conversation which rapidly gets round to the power of women, the power of men..and just who’s serving who?
the power the female form has over most men is hardwired into their nature, and of course vice versa …
in the fullness of time, we’re now witnessing woman objectify men in return.
it’s still a fascinating area for artists to explore.
allen recently did some female sculptures using kate moss.
i do love kate moss in this white stripes music video where she pole dances.
ye gods, that bright fun lovin working class girl sure knows how to rake in her cash.

you’ll probably know that great scene from clockwork orange in the milk bar with those female sculptures as drink dispensers and tables. they were very much determined by allen jones. what happened was stanley kubrick called allen on the phone and told him he’d seen his work, then asked if he’d create the sculptures for the milk bar. allen was yeah cool…   but then after coming up with strong ideas on paper, the topic of money came around. stanley kubrick said…“oooh but i’m a famous film director..it’ll be so great for your career. do it for free. allen replied “it takes months..i can’t work for free..i’m no prop designer… but take the ideas anyway…yawn…whatever”…and kubrick bloody well did.

here’s the scene from the milk bar in clockwork orange. allen didn’t make those particular sculptures,but they’re his ideas..and ideas are everything.the rest is hammers and chisels.    toodle pip sweet reader..can’t believe January’s nearly nearly nearly tick tock tick tock xxx

Chair 1969 by Allen Jones born 1937IMG_0531 - Version 2IMG_0529 - Version 23b25e1ee-799d-4629-8f07-a3c93b253478-620x372

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3 Responses to allen jones and clockwork orange

  1. i liked reading your observations about objectifying women (and men). I never really worked out if sexy clothes were empowering me or the opposite.
    Chrissie Hynde’s advice to “chick rockers” comes to mind for some reason: “Don’t think that sticking your boobs out and trying to look fuckable will help. Remember you’re in a rock and roll band. It’s not “fuck me,” it’s “fuck you”!”

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    • that’s fantastic kathy..chrissie is right! … but dressing up can be either empowering or diminishing…it all depends on where we’re going with our garments,before we even reach for them. the most important things in a wardrobe are the songs…long may they keep yourself and the listener warm.

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  2. Julie Rex says:

    Nothing wrong with these….quite fancy one of those tables myself lol…Saw Chrissie Hynde at Hyde Park last year….she was fantastic!…

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