For me, musicians have a special kind of draw, something like a shimmering forcefield of energy surrounding their bodies, sending snakelike tendrils through the ethers to wrap themselves about my wrists and pull me closer. I’ve never been a groupie; it’s not about getting my photo taken with some guitar-wielding Lothario at the end of a sweaty gig. The fascination comes from hearing someone’s soul represented in the sounds they make (chill out atheists, you can switch the word soul for ‘personality’ if you like) and admiring the drive that causes them to prioritise making noise over eating, sleeping and accruing material wealth. Yes, I’m talking about dedicated artists of sound, not record-deal hunters. And I propose author and biologist Rupert Sheldrake’s hotly contentious concept of Morphic Resonance to make sense of that ‘je ne sais quoi’ possessed by the ‘true musician’:
Wrestled up the grassy knoll, dragged through the graveyard and then placed inside the building to tower over pews like an icon, the piece is a tribute to industrial modernity exhibited within an archaic religious structure. Coley has appropriated the words from George Bernard Shaw (a known atheist) and is now installing his views in the sacred space of believers. The philosophy of architecture is Coley’s recurrent theme, with his work always asking us: What is my relationship to this space? What does this structure represent in relation to the society in which it was built? The piece is visually bold, politically rude and endlessly thought-provoking, well worth the uphill trek.
The term ‘rape culture’ refers to the various ways in which the severity of the act of rape is being belittled within our society, from its actual promotion on banter sites like unilad.co.uk and in the inane patter of self-styled celebrity wannabes like Dapper Laughs, to the porn industry and the myth perpetuating newsprint media. Headlines such as ‘Six footballers jailed over gang rape of 12-year-old girls in midnight park orgy’ (Daily Mail) damage the perspective of readers through language that serves a patriarchal agenda. We need to realise that by equating rape to ‘surprise sex’ by way of a joke, or describing vile acts of paedophilia as an ‘orgy’, we are normalising behaviour that should on no level be tolerated. Firstly, I think a simple change in the law could make a huge difference. By filtering down into the education system, understanding of this law could challenge the dangerous cultural attitudes being bred into our youth: