Read Time 5 minutes

What’s Good now?

November marked our first IRL What’s Good event, a meet-up where we had the chance to put a few faces to names [or mobile numbers]. After ambling around the Carolee Schneeman Body Politics show at the Barbican we caught up in the pub to share our thoughts on the exhibition, and the gallery gift shop, which is a hot topic on the GC these days. A very stimulating start to an autumn Saturday and we can’t wait for the next one ❤️

Join us to get in on the other hot topics, verbal jousting, future meet-ups and general excellent vibes. And, in the meantime, your usual round up of recommendations …


The Story of Art Without Men, Katy Hessel | Whats Good | Darklight Art

[Documentary, art]

Katy Hessel’s successful Instagram and podcast series The Great Women Artists, and writing for publications such as The Guardian, Vogue and The Evening Standard has now been parlayed into a rather hefty book. The Story of Art Without Men aims to redress the gender imbalance that has long blighted our reading of art history. This special episode of the podcast is a half hour preview of the book, narrated by the author – handy for a taster before you commit to the full ten hour/520 page experience!

Art School Horror Stories, The White Pube Podcast | Whats Good | Darklight Art

[Art, documentary] 

The most bonkers anecdotes from the most bonkers, lawless institutions, which fall into the worrying categories of animals; bodily fluids; weird tutors; and weird students –– as told to The White Pube who surely need no introduction, but are the most exciting voices in contemporary art criticism and are also very jokes.

Talking point: Sorry but can you imagine a single one of these things happening at the Royal Academy under Sir Joshua Reynolds? Can you?? Also shit on a scanner lol. Every day we stray further from God’s light.


Do Men and Women Take Photos Differently, asks this Guardian columnist | Whats Good | Darklight Art


Isn’t it funny how there are some activities which are gendered in the sense that, in the domestic space they are often/usually taken on by women and in the professional space they are often/usually taken on by men? Cooking is one of them –– the vast majority of Michelin stars have been awarded to men but when it’s cooking at home on a day-to-day basis it’s frequently the woman who takes on this task [in a het relationship]. This writer posits that the same is true for photography, noting that while there are many successful male photographers [who do it for art or money], photography as a practical documentary tool for everyday life is an activity dominated by women. 

Talking point: This article doesn’t go into this, but I wonder how this contributes to our societal view of domesticity as a feminine preoccupation, if family life is recorded predominantly through the female gaze?

The Artists Sharing Their Worst Savagings | Whats Good | Darklight Art

‘In the course of making Bad Reviews, Mir discovered that there are two kinds of artist: the first being self-styled geniuses “who need constant approval and if they get a bad review they tend to be crushed by it”, all of whom ran a mile from the project. Instead, the book is made up of more pragmatic artists “who participate in public life, their work looks at society and delivers some kind of critique, so for them getting a bad review isn’t such a big deal, it’s being part of a conversation where someone might not agree with your position but it doesn’t bring you down.”’

Van Gogh | Whats Good | Darklight Art


In my opinion there are so many GOOD reasons for Just Stop Oil choosing this particular painting in their protest, but ultimately my boy Van G lived in extreme poverty throughout his life and if Big Oil is allowed to carry on in the way it has been for much longer then millions of people in this country and well beyond are going to fall into poverty too. Not able to heat their homes or buy food. I don’t think he would have objected to a bit of damage done to the frame of his painting to make a statement about this disaster. As writer India Bourke points out, Vincent was a radical. [Read more here]

Talking Point: ‘Art is not and never has been separated from the turmoil and struggle of everyday life’


[Fictional, art]

The cast of this 1950s-set period piece is killer, with Julia Roberts playing the kind of rebellious and inspiring art history teacher you’d just love to have. She teaches her pupils how to see [hello, John Berger], and to appreciate art beyond its value. She also has sex with Dominic West on the floor of a lake-side cabin. 

Talking Points: The Jackson Pollock MOMENT, #feminism, and Julia Roberts’ beret


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