Saturday, 19 September 2015

QUEER CRITIC DEAD.





I know nothing of art, precious little about anything, really, yet I loved to see art critic, Brian Sewell, ripping into Pomposity and Stupidity, however grand their  costumes.

 It wasn't just the jumped-up dauber or the sluttish, soiled bed-linen artiste who found themselves skewered on his  rapier;  I remember hooting when, as Sewell chaired the grisly charade, a politician or some such vermin on Have I Got Stale News For You proclaimed that We Needed Less Of These Things, fewer, said Sewell, almost to himself, alone amongst barbarians, we need fewer, not less.
 Lovely. 

I loved his  irreverence, his scholarship, his language  and his alert, curious,  mischievously queer face.

Brian Sewell has been missing for a while now and he has just died at 84.  
I hope he was in Queer Heaven, alongside Quentin Crisp, half an hour before the joyless, scowling Devil of Gay knew that he was dead.

13 comments:

Bungalow Bill said...

I knew nothing of this Mr I until i dropped in here. I am very sorry to hear of it - he was a glorious affront to the humdrum and priggish. His gayness was also a thing done well, he struggled with it because of his Catholicism but then allowed his passions to overcome him and proceeded to enjoy himself prodigiously. The sort of person we can ill afford to lose.

call me ishmael said...

I can think of no-one like him, mr bungalow bill, although some here deploy a similar, pugent, no-nonsense concision.

I read the news at the Guardian, whose report links to other Sewell pieces, among which I would commend, Brian Sewell on Why the BBC's factual output is an insult to the nation.

Rightwinggit said...

I used to like the way he could beat a pleb to a pulp using only his IQ...

Mike said...

Obit in the Filthograph worth a read.

SG said...

Sad news indeed Mr I - alas there is no escape from the reaper of souls. I shall also miss his cutting intellect & shall follow up on the link you mention above in remembrance of this civilised man.

call me ishmael said...

Yes, good piece in the Filth-O-Graph, good comments, too.

I might just raise a glass to him, myself.

And not just a pleb, mr rwg, but the high and the haughty.

Citizen Suspect Mr SG said...

Just read the Filth-O-Graph piece too, thanks Mr Mike, something they still do well over at The Telegraph - the Obituary writers must have somehow escaped the gaze of the 'New People'....

Lilith said...

He was potty about his dogs, recently wrote aa charming little book about it. Calfy met him last year after a talk and he told her Ruskin is overated :-)

call me ishmael said...

Yes, dogs and surprisingly, cars, and men, of course. I believe he though that most of us are overrated and I feel that he was correct. Trust that Lilith junior is staying the fuck away from Damascus these days.

Lilith said...

Yes, although she is studying Arabic. (Somebody has to know what they're on about.)

http://www.memritv.org/clip/en/4576.htm (I suggested she learn the dialogue for her oral exams)

Mike said...

Bu chance, up popped on Aussie TeeVee Episode 1 of Naked Pilgrim - his 2003 journey to Santiago de Compostela. Episode 1 started in England (briefly) then onto Paris. Scathing about Sacre Coeur, and some insights on Notre Dame, as well as anecdotes galore. Most interesting 30 minutes. Hope it continues to Episode 2.

Well worth a watch if you can find.

call me ishmael said...

I think I have seen it, mr mike, a while back, but so many of them just merge into one, in memory, unless I write something down; it is the nature of the medium, lazy. On the other hand, I have been working quite hard, reading John Keegan's First World War, very different from TellyHistory.

call me ishmael said...

Arabic, and Mandarin, the new scholarship, the Greek and Latin for our times, Calf, the new Boris.