Most of the day spent in the city art gallery. Built as the courthouse in 19th century, and expensively converted in this century (I think), the city now want a new art gallery because their collections hugely outnumber the space available to display. There is a great display of arcitects models and drawings from the archive of Hertzog and DeMeuron (who did the Tate Modern conversion) because they have been selected to do the new city gallery. As Jackie observed, if there is enough money from the client architects love to explore materials and make models. And excess money is a recurring theme in the gallery. An exhibition of photographs taken in the home of Elizabeth Taylor reveals colour coded wardrobes of clothes, racks of shoes by Chanel, boxes of jewels, walls of paintings by famous names. Elsewhere a very revealing film starts by looking at homes (and ships) of the very wealthy to see Bauhaus/Corbusier furniture. Then it moves to auction houses where the furniture was bought for, say, $60k for two small armchairs. Then it moves back to a new town built in the Punjab in the 1950s, designed by Le Corbusier, where all this fine furniture has been left stacked up since the city was more or less left in ruins in 2010. It is this stuff, bought up cheaply by astute dealers, shipped to the wealthy West and refurbished that is now being bought by those with so much money they need ostentatious outlets. God it makes me angry (I use the term ‘god’ as an expletive, and not in recognition of any belief system, though I recall Jesus threw the money lenders out of some place).
In another area there are many works by a Vancouver artist called Geoffrey Farmer – creations straight out of his very busy mind, rooms full of them, incorporating found objects, fancy lighting, poetry, sounds and movement.
This is part of one room of sounds and lights and objects (some of which move a bit) called ‘An interpretation of the life of Frank Zappa).
Checked into our second hotel here, an International Hostel. A different part of town, still lots of young people sleeping on the street, but fewer longterm homeless with missing limbs, crippled backs, shrunken toothless faces and all the delights of our last area (between Gastown and Chinatown).
Dinner and some beer at the Yaletown Brewery and bar – tried Roundhouse Wheat, Loading Bay IPA and Yaletown Ale. Then a walk to the long thin inner harbour where we caught a little ferry to Granville Island to find the appropriately named Granville Island Brewery, where we sampled an IPA and an Ale, both rather unimpressive, which is sad because it was one of the first Vancouver small brewers I had heard about.
Waiting for a late ferry back to the hotel side of False Creek (the inner harbours proper name) we met a couple who paid our ferry fare because, “they only cost us a buck each, we get a special resident’s rate”. They went to Brighton in 1971, the year I moved there, whilst touring Europe on $5 a day.
If you read this far I reckon you deserve another picture, so here is a rather fine 20s or 30s building in Chinatown.