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bits and pieces on Brighton and thee beyond…..

Archive for August, 2009

Mirabelle

Posted by Sara on August 27, 2009

A spookylicious new tale has just been added to our sister blog Shadowstime. Though feedback on this one has not been too good so far, I love this story. I have dusted her down and looked her over and still can’t bring myself to change a thing. So here she is as she always has been and always will be. I guess Love is blind after all.

mirabelle

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Shadows of Time

Posted by Sara on August 24, 2009

sundial

No – it’s not yet another plug for my story blog (I’m leaving that for the next post), just that I’ve noticed these around town and could not help taking a photo or two. I have no idea who is responsible or why, but I find them strangely beautiful and look forward to stumbling across more.

byebyebicycleThinking about Time and Shadows while playing the google game, I came across a great interactive piece of shadow play, created by the West Sussex Grid for Learning, which is worth a go just for the disturbingly eerie sound effects. It’s called Shadows of Time and of course I love the name – well I would wouldn’t I?!

Posted in Brighton Graffiti, Street Art and Random Ephemera | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Back of the Car park

Posted by Sara on August 20, 2009

door

Somewhere round the back of the car park in King Pl.

psychomouse

backroundthecarpark

kingspl

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The Street

Posted by Sara on August 19, 2009

15.08.2009 The Street, St James St, Brighton.

thestreet Located about half way up – or down? – St James Street in Kemptown, The Street is a perennial favourite of ours due to a lovely outside garden eating space which makes a leisurely weekend fry up such a pleasure on a nice sunny day. Today was not so sunny so we opted to eat in instead. The cafe itself is spacious and bright with sparkly lights and glowing pink painted woodwork contrasting nicely with the bare stone walls and monochrome prints.

counterThe menu is standard Cafe fare, with toasted sandwiches and baguettes vying for your attention alongside jacket potatoes and pasta. Specials of the day included Homemade  Soup  with crusty bread and  Garlic or Lemon Chicken Roast with chips and coleslaw.

We of course order breakfast, I have the Veggie Monty with extra mushrooms and Dan the Full Meaty Version with extra black pudding. Feeling especially peckish we also opt for a sneaky bowl of chips on the side. Both breakfasts cost £4.25 with mushrooms and blackpudding an additional 85p.

The Street Meaty

The Street Meaty

Drinks are extra and we both order coffee. The coffee is delicious –  piping hot, filtered and served in big round white china. Condiments on offer were the standard ketchup, mustard and brown sauce. Despite it being a busy Saturday lunchtime, the food arrives quick so we tuck in.

The Street Veggie Breakfast
The Street Veggie Breakfast

Eggs were served sunny side up and crispy round the edges and had just the right amount of gooeyness. I liked the veggie sausages and the hash browns were nice and crispy. My tomato, well half tomato, must have been the smallest I have ever been served but though it was small it tasted just fine. Dan liked the meaty stuff but was eyeing my extra egg and sausages with envy.

We had to wait a little extra for the chips but they were worth it. Served up piping hot and cooked just perfect they were like a deliciously sumptous too hot bath that you know can’t be good for you but you can’t help wallowing in just the same. Service was very friendly and attentive and overall this was a tasty, good quality fry up – just beware the hole in the toilets.

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Cemetery Tale

Posted by Sara on August 15, 2009

thecemeterytale

Originally posted in our shrine of spookiness Shadows Time here is a poem written by Dominic, who now pens his prose over at the Poetry Shelf, so you can go read it there as well.

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Tales from the Seaside

Posted by Sara on August 12, 2009

Talesfromtheseaside

Nice to see neglected buildings put to good use – as in the case of the old music library in Church St which is now home to  the Prescription Art Gallery and its rather fabulous exhibition of Street Art. Spread out over three storeys in this splendidly dilapidated listed building, the exhibition features artwork by over 25 artists from around the globe. From monumental monopoly boards to basement Madonna’s and scary wooden robots this is an amazing collection of artwork.

robotI loved this and cannot recommend it enough – there is something about the combination of crumbly mansions and cutting edge creativity that always manages to warm the cockles of my heart and as we speak I am scrimping and saving my pennies so I can buy one of their gorgeous canvases – failing that I guess I’ll settle for one of the brilliant books or bargain prints on offer.

heavy artillery

And if that isn’t enough spray can splendiferousness for you, an exibition of local grafitti legends Heavy Artillery will be opening upstairs in the gallery from Wednesday 12th August, featuring special screenings of the film that followed the creation of their work in Kensington St. For more info go visit Prescription Art.

god is what

Posted in Brighton Bits and Pieces, Brighton Graffiti | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments »

Mommy, what’s a Coccolithophore?

Posted by Sara on August 9, 2009

fabrica 006

Why dear, it’s a single-celled algae responsible for forming the chalk bed we now call the South Downs and the inspiration behind the lastest art installation at Fabrica. Called The Elephant Bed and created by John Grade, this sculpture consists of a series of beautifully crafted horn shaped cones suspended in the gallery, some of  which are left hanging over a pool, slowly disintgrating into the brackish water.

John Grade’s work is characterised by the crafting of sculptural objects which are then left outside to the mercy of the elements and Fabrica are running a series of events throughout the installation celebrating this sculpture’s ongoing decay and eventual destruction. Last Wednesday we attended a free Drawing to Film evening in the gallery. Hosted by artist Jane Fordham we were invited to draw our responses while watching the classic sci fi film The Day of the Triffids (1962 Dir Francis & Sekely)

fabmovieThis film is based on the John Wyndam novel and was chosen by John Grade specifically for the fact that those pesky Triffids were eventually destroyed by sea water, in much the same way his sculpture will be. The evening was free and all art materials supplied. It was a great fun and a wonderfully eerie location to watch a movie with the advantage that, being in the dark, you don’t even need to be able to draw too well! There will be another Drawing to Film event this Wednesday featuring The Creature from the Black Lagoon in glorious 3D no less, so that should inspire some interesting pictures too.

fabart

Fab Art

On the morning of August 31st the Elephant Bed will be laid to rest on the beach to dissolve forever into the sea. For more info on this beautiful, haunting piece of work and future events contact Fabrica.

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Books and books and books and….

Posted by Sara on August 6, 2009

I’ve not been writing too much this past week but that’s because I have been reading loads – as the Gods of all Gifts Secondhand have been smiling down on me with some remarkable finds in my local charity shops.

spiralFirst up was Spiral off Western road, one of my favourite places for a Saturday morning browse. Spread out over three adjoining rooms trailing down Bedford Place and a veritable Santa’s Grotto for knick knacks and furniture, Spiral has an eclectic range of books and magazines – including a vast collection of National Geographics I am slowly making my way through – all stacked in big bookcases along the walls, one of them hiding a beautiful scenic mosaic behind it which is worth a visit to the shop alone.

sjacksonDuring my last Saturday Spiral excursion I stumbled apon The Masterpieces of Shirley Jackson, published by Raven Books. With an introduction by Donna Tartt, this edition contains The Lottery, The Haunting of Hill House and We Have Always Lived in the Castle. Shirley Jackson and Donna Tartt are two of my favourite authors so the introduction alone was worth the £1 the book cost me. There are some writers you just never ever find in charity shops and Shirley Jackson is one of them. I have just finished We have Always Lived in The Castle and it has affected me deeply – what an amazing story, so funny and sad, bizarre and so true all at the same time.

Then on to Oxfam, Western Road for not one, not two but three Ray Bradbury paperbacks, all at a bargain 99p each.

RayBradburyRay Bradbury writes beautifully and I love his prose. Something Wicked This Way Comes is one of my favourite books that I can read and reread time and time again. I’ve not read any of the stuff above but have just started on the short stories  compiled in Golden Apples of the Sun – two that stand out for me so far are The Great Wide World Over There and The Fruit at the Bottom of the Bowl.

If that wasn’t enough bargain busting for one day I wander down to the Lanes where I spy this hardback in the window of Sandpiper books:

lordofavisibleworldOk so this isn’t secondhand but at £6.99 is a bargain none the less. Sandpiper specialise in remainder and bargain books with loads of those big coffee table type tomes, so fun to flick through on rainy afternoons, choc full of photos of anything and everything from arty sailors to modern architecture and antique charm bracelets to Andalusian equines. They also stock a wide range of books in specialist subjects and are always worth a browse. I’ve not seen this one much cheaper than £20 secondhand so to find it new for £6.99 is a treat indeed. They still have copies in stock last time I looked so get there quick if you want one.

Though HP Lovecraft is another one of my favourite authors and was a prolific letter writer, I’ve avoided reading much of his personal correspondence as the less you know about your heroes the better I think. But since being given his biography for Christmas my curiousity has been piqued; a lot of people who know much better than I do rate his life as having been a pretty tragic one whereas it didn’t sound too bad at all to me. Seems he enjoyed a sheltered, secluded life living off the missus and a small family inheritence, fuelled by strong cheese and coffee, free from the vicissitudes of regular employment – an introverts dream no less! Maybe learning more about his life in his own words will add insight so I am looking forward to tackling this selection of his letters and essays, some of which have never been published before.

Just a couple of doors away from Sandpiper is another Oxfam, this one selling nothing but books and records and guaranteed Werewolfofparisto have something worth buying, though their prices can be a little steep – but what the hey, it’s all for charidee. I spotted this – The Werewolf of Paris by Guy Endore and, though I didn’t know anything about this book or the writer, I have a thing for pictures of teeth so I had to buy it just for the cover – even though it was kind of pricey at £1.99.

One thing I love about secondhand books is the pieces of paper you find in them and there is a library type slip glued into the inside cover of this one from a place called Reads + Beads, Sant Bartomeu, Sitges. It appears to be some kind of book rental  co-operative and coincidently the last date stamped for this book to be due back is my birthday!

grimscribe

Well if that wasn’t enough for a fun filled afternoon shopping what did I spy when made my way to pay at the counter? Holy Guacamole Batman can this be true? For £1.50?!

I guess this makes up for the time I spotted Teattro Grottesco in the very same shop tucked away in the foreign language section but decided not to buy it as I had a copy borrowed from the library and hadn’t made up my mind whether I wanted one to keep all to myself or not. So I left it there, foolishly thinking it would be safe for a week or two but alas by the time I realised how fine the stories were it had gone….

Ho Hum – too many books, too little time – I feel a poem coming on.

Posted in Brighton Shopping | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments »

Pride Beside the Seaside

Posted by Sara on August 2, 2009

prideparade09

brighton pride 09

oldestgayinthevillage

Brighton Pride 2009

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