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Saturday Nite In Shoreditch (9 September 2006)

Spending Saturday night in Shoreditch means there's a good chance you'll end up somewhere tacky. Personally I'm very fond of good old-fashioned kitsch, which isn't too difficult to combine with my commitment to proletarian post-modernism – although even in my philosophy 'tawdry' and 'sublmimity' aren't necessarilys synonyms. Last night the company in which I trawled Shoreditch consisted of two artists, two curators and two writers. They shall remain anonymous (its probably more fun for you to guess their identities) but one of them (not me) gets five pages in the new 'Art Forum'. So not wishing to be subjected to the crush at the Bricklayers Arms or The Cantaloupe, we ended up at The Rivington. This is a bar/restaurant serving the London art establishment. Local dealers (or should that be gallerists?) have tabs and take their artists and clients there. There are white walls, soft lighting and padded leather furniture for those who are (or in our case were) drinking but not eating. There was plenty of room and we spread ourselves across a couple of out-sized sofas. Aside from the staff, I'd guess most of those in The Rivington last night were dealers; they were certainly dressed and acted like businessmen, with very few women among them. Now my opinion is that to really get the measure of a place you need to check the toilets. So just before we left I took a peak at the bogs. They'd been badly remade in flaking (like paint had literally flaked off the water pipes and some of the grouting needed sorting out) eighties retro 'chic'. This decor was the antithesis of 'good taste' and would have needed a make-over even if it had looked good when it was put in (which it obviously hadn't). So if you happen to be in this part of town on Saturday night and The MacBeth no longer amuses (it has never amused me), then perhaps The Rivington is the place to go. Tacky, tacky, tacky!

Thomas Hirschhorn (discussion)

Marine Hugonnier (review of 2008 London show)

Biggest Hayward Opening For Years (the Arts Council collection)

Bob & Roberta Smith opening at Peer


Stewart Home topless photo by Chris Dorley-Brown

Stewart Home telling it like it is....