Slade Summer School – Day 4

I have been dog-tired all day, due to spending the whole night lying in bed wondering why I wasn’t asleep. Have you ever wondered where the saying dog-tired comes from? Well, I did just then. According to Wiktionary: derives from an old tale of Alfred the Great who used to send his sons out with his extensive kennels of hunting dogs. Whichever of his sons…were able to catch more of the hounds would gain their father’s right hand side at the dinner table that evening. These chases would leave them ‘dog-tired’ yet merry at their victory.

I suppose my insomnia had a merry side, in that I managed to finish the big drawing I’ve been working on, in my head that is. I thought about all the things I wanted to put in it and how I would be able to get it all done before the end of the course. Unfortunately, the actual me is slower than the me in my head and, as the day progressed, I realised I haven’t got a hope in hell of finishing by Friday. True to form, I have filled the picture with iddy biddy things; consequentially, I am far from being finished. For a while there, I thought I was still in with a chance – thanks to the RedBull I had at lunch – and drew so fast I thought my hand would fall off.

In the morning we went to the British Museum; which, lucky for me, is only 5mins walk from where I’m staying. Our instructions were to find 3 objects we would like to draw into our pictures. My favourite thing was this fellow. I didn’t get a chance to put him in my picture today; perhaps I will tomorrow.


African Sculpture, British Museum

After the museum, it was pretty much downhill for me in terms of mental acuity; so the afternoon was a bit of a blur. However, I did perk up when Lindsay suggested we go for a drink. On the way, we popped in to see the great philosopher, Jeremy Bentham. Even though he died nearly 200 years ago, he had the foresight to request his that his body be taxidermed and gifted to the University upon his death. Unfortunately, his head withered over time, so that is tucked away in a cupboard, and he has a wax one instead.

Jeremy Bentham (w/ wax head)

Jeremy Bentham (w/ wax head)

The bar we went to looked like the setting of an Agatha Christy novel; indeed, I half expected Poirot to come wandering around the corner. Lindsay and I had a lovely time; we get on like a house on fire and have lots in common: including art, a love of books and the fact that we both know the words to God Save the Queen – perhaps the only bright side of British Imperialism.

The lovely Lindsay

The lovely Lindsay

Well, I’m as dog-tired now as I was before, so I better go to bed; hopefully, this time I’ll sleep.

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