The Art Critic! 1200 words
The Art Critic! 1200 words
The Gallery Proprietor is marked as Prop throughout script
The Proprietor is already on stage giving his paintings a bit of a dust with a feather duster.
Enter Fenella Ponsonby-Smythe
Moving towards Proprietor and he minces towards her. Fenella looks disdainful as Prop offers her a limp hand to shake but she ignores it and they stand still.
“Good Morning, are you the proprietor of this establishment, well, I, am Fenella Ponsonby-Smythe, art critic for The Critical Review. A positive report from me could catapult your gallery to the forefront of the art world, along with any exhibiting artists whose work I favour. As I'm rather short of time shall we start with your modern art sculptures? What's that, oh, in your opinion a much maligned genre. (Prop nods) How illuminating. Well, I must tell you I'm not a fan no, not since Rodin's Kiss nearly did for me when I fell over the damned thing and the only kiss I got was a black eye. (Prop makes face)
Looking over to off stage left hand side at imaginary unmade bed
Oh, how quaint, I see you still classify unmade beds as modern.
(Prop nods) Although, strangely enough, only last week I saw a wonderful exhibit exquisitely constructed from a pile of bricks. Unfortunately the gallery had the builders in. They were building an extension and not realizing the bricks were an actual exhibit, they used them in their construction. However, the entrance to the new extension does bear a name plaque and there's a little figure of a man, possibly the artist. What? His name? Gents I think.(Prop drops hand from wrist)
Move just a little bit
What is the title of this piece? The Exorcist! I don't see the connection. Oh sorry, The Excercisist? (Prop tuts)
Moving to the chair the Name plaque is to the front side facing audience
Well, after that, I think I need to sit down. (Prop looks offended) Oh, I do beg your pardon, but how was I to know it was an exhibit? (Prop points to nameplate )Well, I didn't see the name plaque. Oh, it's called The Empty Chair. Hmm, so far your gallery is living up to expectations.
Move to toilet or screen
Now then, tell me? Was it your decision to display this toilet as a work of art? (Prop nods head) It was but you don't know where you stand with it. Well, for a start not there...
Sound Effect of water running so it gives impression of someone using toilet
and certainly not with that thing in your hand. Oh, really, it is your opinion any object can be seen as art if it is displayed in aesthetically pleasing surroundings.
Yes, I know parts of the body can be viewed as art too, but I think if this toilet is to be considered a work of art then it should be a stand-alone piece. I think Form over function would be more advantageous in attempting to raise the reputation of your Gallery. One must know when less is more. Although in your case more seems to be less… probably due to the cold weather. (Prop comes out from behind screen)
Oh, I agree, there is a place for modern art. Although these days, most sculptors and artists, have done away with the need for talent, as they seem to rely more heavily on chainsaws, animals and formaldehyde.
Aaah! But when it comes to paintings, the Pre-Raphaelites are really where my taste runs. I like their concept of using brushes and paint…such a novel idea! You don’t have any? Pity!
Move back to first painting on the other side.
I see with this one you couldn’t find the artist so you hung the picture. In my opinion it should be drawn and quartered too. If he says he’s a painter, ask him to come back when he has added decorator too, to his list of accomplishments. Yes, I know his paintings are popular…One can view them at any of the big car boot sales, and they sell well too. Sometimes he gets over a pound…for one!
Move to Mirror
Well now, this is beautiful, such a striking model. Lovely, quite lovely! Oh, it's a mirror you say. No wonder I recognized the face. Anyway, I think we should move on to your watercolours,
Move to next painting
Oh, I must say I find this first one quite exceptional. What’s that, you don’t value his work …he’s just a peace artist! Well, I must say he is a peace artist of the very highest calibre, and one I should hang on to, if you want your gallery to flourish.
Moving just one or two steps and taking time to study his next painting)
Oh yes, I can see from his next exhibit, he does do peace work, as this painting has a wonderful sense of urgency.
Talking of urgency, time is of the essence so shall we move on to your most valuable and famous works. This is the section I always look forward to, when reviewing a new Gallery. Oh, you only have two paintings in this category?
How disappointing! Then we must hope the two artists’ will lift your Gallery’s reputation by the sheer quality of work well executed.
Move to easel which has two paintings either one behind other or one nearby waiting to be put on easel.
Oh dear, with this one I fear it should have been the artist, not the painting that should have been executed. How long did you say you’ve been in this business?
Well, have you not heard what Dame Edith Evans said about this painting? She said she could never have it in her house as it would be like, 'living with a gas leak!' So, let's take a look at your next piece.
The second painting is either put up or revealed
Oh dear. Oh dear. It’s not your lucky day, is it? You obviously haven’t heard what Winston said about this particular portrait of him? Well, I think it fair to say, he did not hold this painting in high regard because he said, 'He’s painted me looking as if I’m having a difficult stool!' Unfortunately, I must concur with his evaluation as I am not impressed with this or any of the other pieces I have seen.
Proprietor whispers in Art Critic's ear.
Oh, you’ve just been teasing me. To think I might have gone without seeing such an exceptionally fine miniature. That familiar face and enigmatic smile always so exquisitely captured. Yes, truly a thing of beauty. How many of them did you say you had?
Proprietor brings out wad of money from pocket
That many...really, I have often asked myself how it is the Royal Mint can maintain such consistency with their fifty pound notes...but yes that amount will be enough to guarantee a good report, now that you understand the protocol involved. Yes, indeed, you may look forward to a most favourable review. No, I won't stay for the cheese and wine. Goodbye! (LONG PAUSE and Turning away from proprietor
And good luck with that load of old folderol!