Dark Tales: Marilyn in the Underworld

Artist Pam Glew has merged Marilyn with a Norse goddess in Dark Tales, a solo exhibition at The Art of Protest Gallery until July 31, as Charles Hutchinson reports for York Press.

“Glew, who lives in Brighton with her family and has a studio in her back garden, is best known for her distinctive paintings on fabric, using dye and stitch to paint, deconstruct and distress vintage materials in her own style of painting.

This summer she comes to York with a show that blends the mythology that filled Glew’s life growing up in North Cornwall as ‘a weird grungy kid with a sketch book and a love of music’ with the influence of her first visit to York in 2017.

‘I was inspired by York’s Viking past woven throughout the city, so I used Norse mythology as the nucleus for the show,’ she says. ‘The strong Norse goddesses featured include Hel, goddess of the underworld; Freyja, goddess of sex, fertility, war and wealth; Nott, goddess of night, and Skadi, goddess of the hunt and winter.

‘While researching, I was struck by how balanced the portrayal of women seemed to be; they are both light and dark, dangerous and caring, and not in any way superficial. The multifaceted trend of the gods, whereby they are both hard and soft, runs through the representational paintings in my solo show.

Hel, for example, is an entertainer to the dead; she is half beauty, half skull, and is painted on a split skull textile applique using ornate Japanese gold-printed fabric and calico.’

Glew re-imagines Norse goddesses as screen stars, Hel becoming Marilyn Monroe and Lofn, goddess of forbidden love, being transformed into Rita Hayworth, while Britannia takes the form of Elizabeth Taylor.”

‘Ms. Monroe’ Inspires Warsaw Radio

‘Ms. Monroe’, the new single from Brighton band Warsaw Radio (whose lead singer Brian McNamara hails from Limerick, Ireland), is inspired by Marilyn’s relationship with Arthur Miller, as Eric Lalor reports for JOE.ie. Taken from their debut album, Midnight Broadcast, ‘Ms. Monroe’ doesn’t mention the couple directly, but its lyrics evoke doomed love and the video’s use of found footage enhances the retro feel.

“The narrative imagines Monroe giving advice on relationships after the break down of her relationship with Miller when they were filming what would be Monroe’s last film (The Misfits) in Reno, Nevada … McNamara’s vocals have rarely sounded better … It’s a cracker from start to finish and would leave you wanting to hear more.”

UPDATE: In an interview with the Connacht Tribune, Brian McNamara revealed the inspiration behind the song…

“About two years I went to see a play about Marilyn Monroe at the Brighton Fringe Festival. I didn’t know anything about her, other than she was a movie star. I came home that night and started writing that song. A few days later it was finished. At the time we were recording our album and I was exploring this way of writing where you try to get other people’s perspective.”

‘Some Like It Hot’ in Hove

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Some Like It Hot will be screened at 8pm on St February 14 at the Old Market in Hove, East Sussex. Its connection to the most romantic day of the year is an unlikely one, as the story begins in Chicago, on the night of the St Valentine’s Day massacre. But Empire magazine’s Angie Errigo describes the 1959 farce as ‘a joyful classic which delivers on comedic value no matter how many times you’ve seen it.’

Sugar Kane: Belle of the Roaring Twenties

 I was lucky enough to attend a special screening of Some Like it Hot in Brighton on Tuesday – exactly 54 years after the comedy classic first opened in England. And today, the British Film Institute names it among the top ten movies set during the Roaring Twenties.

“‘All the time the flapper is laughing and dancing, there’s a feeling of tragedy underneath. She’s unhappy and disillusioned, and that’s what people sense.’ Thus spake 1920s It Girl Clara Bow, and if anybody else could ever know how that felt it was Marilyn Monroe, incandescent here as downhearted jazz cat Sugar Kane, forever licking the fuzzy end of the lollipop. Billy Wilder’s cross-dressing caper amps up the comedy even while it hits these low notes, expertly deploying its Prohibition era backdrop, in critic Raymond Durgnat’s words, “as an almost expressionistic setting for everything that’s harsh and hectic in American life’.”

Brighton’s Marilyn Lookalike Opens New Venue

Brighton’s very own Marilyn lookalike, Laura Nixon, has opened her own venue in the seaside city. The Jive Monkey, at 5 Steine Street, is ‘set to be a focus for performers and the first port of call for those who want to see quality entertainment or just have a relaxed drink in a non-pretentious but glamourous setting.’

Opening this Friday, December 2, the Jive Monkey is compared by Latest 7 magazine to ‘a dark 1920s speakeasy with the discretion of a gentlemen’s club plus the excitement of a Berlin cabaret.’

Entertainments will include ‘live music, cabaret, and performance art from the unusual and tongue in cheek to the downright bizarre including screenings of cult movies with a heavy smattering of authentic live jazz.’

Marilyn at the Komedia, Brighton

Brighton’s very own MM lookalike, Laura Nixon, comes to the Komedia for Alive and Swinging on Sunday, February 27th. Dinner at 6.30pm (optional), show begins at 8. Tickets from £15.

“Marilyn Monroe is finding heaven a bore, no drinking smoking or sex, and worst of all, no swinging music. She returns to earth for one more night of fun, bringing old showbiz fling Frank Sinatra, and Las Vegas legend Elvis Presley.

Join the three superstars, special guests and plenty of swing as they sing and dance away their final night on Earth, until the voice of god finds them missing and demands they return to Heaven.

Dinner, Show and Dance!”

Alive & Swinging Website

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