Sniffly Stella…

But first…
Dulltown, UK: Today’s instruction is to apply white glue (supplied) to the dowels and tap them into the reference holes in the ends of the members, rub the raised humps with the back of a heated spoon, insert fingers and thumbs into the edge slots, raise and tilt the whole thing and then lean it against a wall so that the sun can get at it. It should turn a rich golden brown colour within a couple of days.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA‘Industry’ (1990). Charcoal and pencil on paper, about 20″ x 14″ (?)

‘Hello?… Who’s that?…’
‘It’s me, idiot! Let me in!’
‘Oh hello Stella, I saw some religious-looking couples in drab clothes earlier, they were going door to door up the street, I thought that you might be them.’
‘Well David, have you found him yet?’
‘What? Found who?…’
‘Jesus of course!’
‘Oh, stop it! You minx!’
‘Well, let me in then – and don’t get too close! I have a headache and a sore throat, get that kettle on the boil – I want tea, hot comforting tea!…’
‘Well, thanks for coming round Stella, I’ll expect my symptoms appearing in two or three days!’
‘Good god David!’
‘This drawing, it’s ancient! 1990! What cakes and or biscuits do you have today? I need sustenance, they say you should feed a cold you know!’
‘Do they?… I have ginger nuts and custard creams today, would you like a blob of manuka honey in your beverage?’
‘Don’t be disgusting! So, 1990 then, that’s a long time ago – do you think you have got any better at drawing, or did you peak back then and have gone off since?…’
‘Well I…’
‘Ah, this tea is very nice, Taylors of Harrogate Yorkshire?’
‘Of course my dear.’
‘I can see where you are coming from here in this drawing David and…’
‘Please don’t talk with your mouth full of ginger biscuit Stella, you know it irritates me.’
‘…and this work is obviously a graphic tirade against heartless money-grubbing capitalism screwing Mother Earth, oh, these custard creams are really not at all bad David; I do like that staring miserable mustachioed face peering out of the architecture. Is it the combined spirit of generations of downtrodden workers manifesting itself in the…?’
‘Your sore throat doesn’t seem to be affecting you ability to speak Stella – perhaps you shouldn’t over do it my dear?’
‘…and look at the poor earth sinking into the poisonous sludge lost underneath the great ugly mechanical beast – would you like to top up my mug with fresh tea from the pot David?’
‘I don’t see any people in your drawing, are they too hard to draw, so you leave them out?’
‘Yes, that’s right, they are too hard to draw…’
‘This tea tastes funny!’
‘Yes, I slipped some manuka into it – it’ll do you good.’
‘Hm… s’pose…’
‘Aha!… Who’s that knocking on the door? It’ll be the religious folk – shall I let them in?’
‘Oh yes, we’ll give them tea and and have a hilarious conversation with them…’
‘Right ho…’

About Dave Whatt

Grumpy old surrealist artist, musician, postcard maker, bluesman, theatre set designer, and debonair man-about-town. My favourite tools are the plectrum and the pencil...
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