Tag Archives: art

Egon Schiele and his nudes


Sitzender-Frauenakt-Mit-Geneigtem-Kopf-Und-Erhobenen-Armen-(Seated-Female-Nude-With-Tilted-Head-And-Raised-Arms)     Male-Nude-in-Profile-Facing-Right        lying-woman-with-red-trousers-and-female-nude-0221        Egon Schiele

J is coming down from Glasgow to visit family and friends. So we’ll be meeting next week at the Courtauld Gallery to catch up and see the ‘groundbreaking exhibition of Egon Schiele’s electrifyingly frank nudes’*. Yep. Electrifyingly nudes.

And there are several reasons why I just cannot miss this exhibition. Nor can I ignore Tatler’s call: “Do not miss this show – it is a once in a lifetime opportunity”. Right. So, reason number two: He’s a fellow Austrian and I like his work. And as for Reason number one … well, have to keep reading. So, next week J and I shall be staring at 30 or so nude drawings, some of which, warns Courtauld, are ‘of an explicit nature’. OK. Cool. No problem. We aren’t prudish. But thanks. Warning taken on board.

However, in the summer sometimes in the mid 90’s we weren’t so cool about it. That is when J and I travelled to Austria together for the first time and when J, a big Egon Schiele (1890-1918) enthusiast, met my parents. Besides meeting my parents the other nudeshighlight of our brief visit was a joint day excursion to the beautiful town Český Krumlov, where Schiele had once lived. There’s a museum dedicated to Schiele, which permanently displays his drawings and water-colour paintings, his death-mask and other bits and pieces. OK. Back to my story. During the drive to Krumau J kept going on and on about how wonderful Schiele’s paintings and drawings were. So. After paying the admission-fee we started going round the museum… exploring the many different rooms. There were many ahs and ohs…and some visitors would appreciatively nod whilst looking at the drawings and watercolours. OK…I admit …I also began nodding (way of imitating the ‘ones-in-the-know’) …but I didn’t really know what the point of all this nodding was…the artwork didn’t speak to them, surely? Or did it and I didn’t yet hear it?…and so we moved from room to room …ahing and ohing and nodding… and then all of a sudden there was silence…complete (!) silence…no more ahing nor ohing nor nodding. It didn’t take us long to realise – in horror – that we had entered ‘the’ room… the room where ALL the drawings were…well: Groundbreaking! Electrifying. And Frank. And many very explicit (see warning above). OK. You might think now nothing wrong with that, girl. Yes you’re right… but…Not. With. Parents. Or. Future. In-Laws-who-you-‘ve-just-met. In. The. Same. Room.

So. Instead of the earth opening at that very moment (does it ever when you need it to?) here’s what followed immediately after:


 J and I looked at each other (J’s eyes panic-stricken, mine anger-stricken) and began lip-reading (real useful in moments like that):

 J’s lips: Oh-my-god-please-tell-me-that-those-pictures-are-an-illusion-I’m-so-embarrassed-how-can-I-ever-look-into-your parents’-eyes-again-and-now-they-might-even-think-that-I’m-a-pervert.

Gerda’s lips: Oh-my-god-why-on-earth-are-you-an-Egon-Schiele-fan?

J’s lips: I-did-not-know-those-drawings-existed**-I-am-so-sorry!

Gerda’s lips: …motionless…cause she was speechless…

And we both moved fast and as graciously as we could towards the door.

So for old time’s sake we shall be going round the exhibition together…this time without my parents… and have a laugh.

Thanks Courtauld for putting on a show of such a fine Austrian Expressionist (my opinion in any case).

*quote taken from Royal Academy

**J knew about the drawing’s existence, and that but did not expect to see them in Krumlov.

Here some Links if you like to explore further.

Avant-Garde Lates: Visit The Courtauld after hours and experience a night of live music, cabaret, and creative workshops. Tickets include the Courtauld Permanent Collection and the exhibition Egon Schiele: The Radical Nude. Entry between 6pm and 8:30pm. Gallery closes at 9pm.  27 November 2014 – SOLD OUT    15 January 2015 – tickets still available!!

Richard Nagy 

Royal Academy



La flor de mi secreto

Having seen many Almodovar movies I couldn’t resist the temptation to watch “La flor de mi secreto” on a big screen during the Spanish Film Festival. Previously, probably about 12 years ago, I watched the movie on video on my small TV. Then I just started learning Spanish, then I watched the whole film without subtitles, and missed a lot. A lot, if not all, of the fantastic dialogues.

On a Tuesday evening 12 years later – equipped with more Spanish – I  sat inside the cinema at the French (!) Institut. This time I could follow all the dialogue…but not because my Spanish had improved that much, but because of the English subtitles, and gosh, did I enjoy that evening!

“La flor de mi secreto” was introduced by the wonderful Marisa Paredes, (winner of 3 x Best Actress) who would also join the audience after the screening for a short 30 min Q&A session.

At the end of a wonderful evening I concluded that it is hard to believe that Almodovar’s „La flor de mi secreto“ is already 18 years old…for me this tragic comedy is fresh and colourful and after having watched all of Almodovar’s movies I got surprised after realising that the black novel (plot: a young mother’s  daughter kills her husband because he tried to rape her, the corps ends up in a fridge) in the movie has the same plot as Almodovar’s “Volver”!!

Before falling asleep that night, I tried to decide which one of the many scenes is to be my favourite one. But I couldn’t. I loved the movie from start to finish. However, I did select the following 3 scenes that particularly stuck to my mind.

1. When the junkie tries to take off Leocadida (Leo’s) boots – you can just about see that one boot comes off but is quickly pushed back on :-).

2. When Leo visits her sister’s (Rosa) small apartment, which she shares with her husband and mother. Look out at how Rosa dresses and has her hair done.

3. After a great artistic performance of Leo’s household help and her son (Joaquin Cortes) we see Rose again dressed up to the occasion and having come straight from the hairdresser, fantastic scene!!

Scence “en casa de Rosa”