Friday, February 23, 2007

The de la Warr pavilion in Bexhill is hosting a touring exhibition, Secret Service. It's a dark, claustrophobic and thought provoking collection of work rooted in obsession: a chambermaid photographing the contents of hotel rooms when occupants are out, vast works on paper showing links between public figures connected with various scandals in the US, little boxes made from packaging and an enormous series of book illustrations based on idealised child characters made subtly sinister.

I went yesterday with Jane Fordham. The pavilion's a great place to be at any time, it's so light. But on a grey, rainy day, it's somehow confirms the body's need for light. All the glass and its position virtually on the beach, its inspiring design and empty spaces pull you out of winter and make the most of the little brightness there is even when the sky's low and dumping itself on you.

We spent much of the morning and virtually all the car ride back to Brighton talking about clothes. The dresses we'd given away or lost, clothes we remembered our mothers making or wearing, the hierarchy of clothes from best to comfortable.

But today I need to cut back a hedge and make use of a skip outside the front garden, which is still a mound of earth from the work being done to put a window in the cellar. If the rain holds off for long enough.