25 Nov 2011

Hestia..... enjoys an evening out

It wasn't really an EVENING out.  You can't call going out at half past five 'The Evening', can you?

In fact, can you call any event at the local library A Evening Out?

Especially if it's on a Wednesday?

Well, *I* do.

I got myself gussied up (ie clean) with smart trousers, an unstained sweater, a full face of make-up and a squirt of perfume and headed to the library.

Sonshine was with me.  Working his new black skinny jeans and t-shirt look (pre-EMO, I think we're calling it), he looked rather smart - if a little bummed out at having to leave behind his beloved Minecraft (see: men who live with their mothers playing computer games).

I dragged him along as a necessary evil because this exhibition was all about illustrations from children's books.  Although, I wasn't sure whether a small boy as accessory was a Good Idea or not because it was the Cheese And Wine Opening of the exhibition.  I don't normally drink when I've got the Disapproving Child with me, so I seriously thought about sneaking out for an hour and letting the internet babysit him.

But then, it was all about kids' books.  What if I turned up and was the only adult not to have brought their rug rat with them?

I decided to take him.

We were welcomed at the door with glasses of wine (orange juice for him of course) and basically let loose on the exhibits.

The exhibition was curated by Julia Donaldson, the literary GENIUS behind The Gruffalo, Room on the Broom etc.

Working with the hugely talented Axel Scheffler, Donaldson gathered together some wonderful samples of contemporary childrens' book illustrations. The exhibition is touring around, I think, Scottish libraries (but possibly also libraries Darn Sarf too).

It is a work of two parts - this half includes a selection of divinely illustrated envelopes that Sheffler created for his letters to Donaldson.  If I had been her postman, she would have seen NONE of them - they are all simply addressed to 'Julia Donaldson - Glasgow'!

Look at them in their joyful playfulness.  I think I'd like to be friends with Axel Sheffler, just looking at his envelopes, wouldn't you?

And the artworks included in this section of the exhibition could be defined as non-Scheffler.

This disappointed Sonshine enormously.  He was only there for the Gruffalo.  But the Sheffler artworks form Part le Deux of the exhibition, coming in a fortnight.

Reader, I had a lovely time.  Several glasses of wine and some unexpected loveliness with friends that I hadn't seen for a long time (one with her Brand Spanky New Son).

I was rather partial to these two - what do you think?  Sorry about the strip lighting ;-(

Here are my two favourite images from this part of the exhibition.  I would happily have bought these.

It is a pen and watercolour of three little pigs throwing knives at a terrified-looking wolf

This is also a pen and watercolour of two bluebirds having a swinging time.

At half past six (yeah, I am living the rock and roll dream) Sonshine and I buttoned up and set off into the cold wet night. 

Back in the cosiness of the house, we began to unswathe ourselves from our wintery layers. 'Did you enjoy that?' I asked from deep inside my scarf.

'Eh, it was alright,' shrugged Sonshine, sinking back into his room to take up the Minecraft where he had left off.

For the second part of the exhibition, I shall leave him behind and take a really nice handbag instead.


  1. I love these. Which library are they on at?

  2. Oh they are wonderful! What I wouldn't give for one of those envelopes.

  3. Alex - aren't they great?

    Ellen - it's my local library. I don't know where you are in the world, but you'll definitely need to catch a Calmac Ferry to get here ;-)

    Ali x

  4. Hi Alison, I'm in darkest Renfrewshire, so it might be a bit of a push to visit... although not impossible.

  5. What a lovely collection - so glad to see they are touring libraries and not just on in one big city somewhere.

  6. It's odd, isn't it, how often a child can be replaced with a smartish handbag?!


  7. What a great idea to get people into libraries, seeing as the loonies in charge want to close hundreds of them. What sort of society decides it has too many libraries?

    And Chateau de Taxpayer is a lovely tasting wine.

  8. What a lovely exhibition. You're so fortunate in living in such a culturally rich and diverse place.
    I love the pirate ship, you should get it for Tartarus, I'm sure he'd appreciate it.
    Be thankful for Sonshine, I don't think my son would ever step into an art exhibition with me. Not unless there were lots of naked ladies, and then I'd be too embarrassed.

  9. Those envelopes are fabulous!
    I'm still chuckling about Sonshine's reluctance to forgo Minecraft - I've got a boy who is just the same!
    I think a handbag would be a better bet next time. And top marks for taking full advantage of the wine! xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

  10. I'm calling it an evening out :) We recently went to a night at the museum thing and were home by 11pm... it was ace. A whole night out and a whole night's sleep afterwards ;)

    Yeah if I'd been her postman, I might have planked a few too ;)

  11. I am so jealous.I've always dreamt about being a childrens book illustrator, despite the fact I have no talent in that area.

  12. Wally - You cannot expect to be a musical genius, chef AND an artist, man. You need to leave something for other people to excel at!

    Zoe - I did consider picking at the blu-tak and taking a couple home with me....

    Pastcaring - He's quite addicted to Minecraft. And Warhammer. And his Nintendo. Not like me. I'm not addicted to facebook AT ALL.

    TSB - Culturally rich? This is a place where grown men wear FOOTBALL tops. OUTSIDE. In the STREET.
    If I could have bought any of these I would have, but they're just for looking at! :-) I'm sure that Sonshine would have preferred a Naked Lady Exhibition too.

    Looby - don't get me started on the importance of libraries. Where I come from (Darkest Airdrie. A place so dreadful that Nicholas Fairbairn once said that if the world needed a suppository it would be inserted in Airdrie) possesses a town library with an observatory. YES An Observatory!!! And they wanted to shut it down and replace it with some flat-roofed community centre. People-power won the day though!

    Pearl - Many's the time I've looked at him and thought how much I'd rather have a nice quilted Chanel baguette. Probably a lot cheaper in the long run too.

    Siobhan - possibly coming to a library near YOU!

    Ellen - You daren't come over in this weather. It's like living in a Stephen King novel. When any of us will manage to get on a boat to the mainland is anyone's guess *help me face*

    Ali x


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