London Calling, an exhibition
July 26 – November 13, 2016 Getty Center
Triptych August 1972, Francis Bacon, oil on three canvases, 1972
If you have ever had the opportunity to see the film, Fox and Friends by Rainer Werner Fassbinder http://www.allmovie.com/movie/v18377 you know what it is like to feel the visceral repugnancy of slaughtered meat, but we watch between our fingers. Francis Bacon’s Triptych August 1972 has the same distancing allure as Fox and Friends. Triptych August 1972 is included in the series of “Black Triptychs” that Bacon painted during the early 1970’s in memory of his lover and model George Dyer. Garish pinks and mauves set against the forced perspective of cool grey’s and black symmetry create an atmosphere of foreboding and decay. Life and near death pause, succumb and disintegrate into the ether of unease.
Like most Angelenos everyone knows Vin Scully, the iconic broadcaster for the Los Angeles Dodgers. His amazing voice is recognized the world over. Working for the Dodger organization for 67 years, “Vinny” has witnessed so much in baseball, from the Jackie Robinson days to the move west from Brooklyn to Chavez Ravine, he could even distract us from the LA riots and earthquakes. The stories, the quintessential details of the stories, the strategies of the game within the game, the characters and the heroes of baseball could be reborn at any moment while watching or listening to the Dodgers. There was the communal bond you had with the team, the fans, families and friends alike sharing in his wealth of stories and information, an experience that we all savored but becoming rarer with each passing season. Vin Scully retired last week after broadcasting his final game October 2nd against the Giants in San Francisco. We had a year to prepare but of course that was still not enough time. It was even more bittersweet as the Guggenheim Group (as they are known) the owners of the Dodgers put their fans in a precarious situation in the last few years as they made a crazy financial “deal” that pitted the Time Warner / Charter cable company against 70% of the fan base. The fan base including me were unable to watch the beloved team on Cable much less TV. To do so Dodger fans would have to switch cable companies and pay higher premiums while some folks depending where you lived were unable to make that decision as the Dodger sponsored cable company was not even available in some areas. It’s a mess and Vin Scully is gone and it’s still going to be a mess. The whole greedy situation has turned me off… that a billion-dollar organization and a multibillion-dollar media conglomerate could turn their backs on 70% of the Dodger fan base for the last 3 years including Vin Scully’s final season was a terrible decision on their part. Few can watch them and younger potential fans have moved on to other sports or entertainment possibilities. And this may go on for the next 21 years of the contract or until the team becomes mediocre again… The point is, all this fuss, resentment, frustration and protest cannot bring Vin Scully back, he’s gone and enjoying retirement, but many fans lost a big part of their communal relationship / experience with the team and learned another hard lesson, money ball refers to the corporations that invest and run the MLB and there is little consideration for the everyday fan. So Long Vinny!