When You Say Nothing At All ... Open Spaces on the Page and the Canvas

'You say it best when you say nothing at all' ... don't worry, this isn't a 90s nostalgia blog dedicated to Notting Hill! Rather, I've been thinking about a theme that affects both the written word and the painted canvas. Whether in art or in fiction, is what we leave blank as important as what we create? I was inspired to consider this topic after reaching the end of Elizabeth Strout's 1998 debut novel Amy and Isabelle. Without too many spoilers (and it is in the blurb on the back cover!) Isabelle and Amy are mother and daughter, and the novel explores their long road back to understanding after Amy begins an intense affair with her maths teacher. For Isabelle, driven by her own past pain t

Mirror mirror ... can reflections help us to see art with new eyes?

The Gallery of Modern Art in Glasgow greets visitors with an entrance hall of mirrors. Created by the French-American artist Niki de Saint-Phalle, the mirrored mosaic covers all four walls with cut-glass shapes, and certainly makes more of a statement than the 'white cube' we might expect to find inside an art gallery! As a tour guide for GoMA (do pop in and say hello one weekend!) I've had time to think about the impact that de Saint-Phalle's mirror installation has on audiences. It is striking how her choice of mirrors as a material allows viewers to literally become part of the art around them. Gallery-goers might be used to looking at the walls, but less so to seeing themselves looking b

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