BrewDogging #30: DogHouse Glasgow

Doghouse (late Sunday night, it's not always this quiet)[Previously: Bristol, Camden, Newcastle, Birmingham, Shoreditch, Aberdeen, Manchester, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Stockholm, Leeds, Shepherd's Bush, Nottingham, Sheffield, Dog Tap, Tate Modern, Clapham Junction, Roppongi, Liverpool, Dundee, Bologna, Florence, Brighton, DED Angel, Brussels, Soho, Cardiff, Barcelona, Clerkenwell]

Last year, at the 2015 BrewDog AGM, a lot of big plans were announced. Many of them involved BrewDog opening new premises that weren't just straightforward bars. A press release listed the following: the ShuffleDog games room, a chain of Dog Eat Dog hotdog diners, the Newington Fix coffee bar, and a restaurant/bar/bottleshop combo called DogHouse.

One year on, let's check on their progress. ShuffleDog has been up and running in Leeds since last July. The Newington Fix has spent a year in planning permission hell, and it's still not certain whether it's going ahead or not. Dog Eat Dog - or at least the initial Angel branch - has been and gone. That leaves us with DogHouse, which opened in Glasgow last autumn to a few grumbles which I noted at the time the Soho bar opened. A few months later, at the end of last January, The Belated Birthday Girl and I headed up to Glasgow ourselves to see if they'd been resolved.

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Yayoi Kusama

Yayoi Kusama flower sculpture, Matsumoto City Arts Museum, May 2010. If any of you are around that way, could you let me know if it's still there? Thanks.My first experience of Yayoi Kusama's work took place two years ago, during my most recent visit to Japan. (Information correct at time of writing.) As The Belated Birthday Girl and I wandered around Matsumoto - actually the artist's hometown, though we didn't realise that at the time - we came across a set of gigantic polkadotted flower sculptures outside the city museum. The dotty colour scheme was obviously a motif, as the museum's drinks vending machines had also been painted up the same way. I duly reported it here and thought nothing more about it.

Looking back at that brief review, as Kusama gets a London retrospective at Tate Modern (running until June 5th), the main thing that strikes me now is a big stupid assumption I made in the one sentence I wrote: that Yayoi Kusama was a man. The BBG keeps saying I should correct that error, but I prefer to let it stand as a monument to my appalling sexism. (I'll fix it when I reprint the piece in my next travel book, though. I'm sexist, not stupid.)

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Brain Activity/Joy In People

Try to imagine a combination of David Shrigley's 'I'm Dead' and Jeremy Deller's 'Joy In People' that looks a little like this, but made by someone with access to decent image editing tools and talent.I know there isn't all that much coverage of visual art on this site - here, take a look - but it's interesting to me that this is the first time I've ever reviewed anything at London's Hayward Gallery. I'm in and out of all the other arts venues on the South Bank all the time, but it's rare that something at the Hayward attracts my attention.

So it's nice to be able to report that a conveniently matching pair of exhibitions is occupying the space from now until May 13th, 2012. One single ticket will get you into both: it's a very good deal, for a number of reasons.

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Watch Me Move: The Animation Show

Duck Amuck, by Chuck I don’t think this site’s commitment to the medium of animation can be questioned, can it? Aside from all the regular programmes of shorts I’ve reported on from the film festivals at London and Edinburgh, for the last few years I also appear to have been the only person who’s written a review of every single film in the British Animation Awards Public Choice section. That’s a lot of cartoons, and in the case of the BAA articles a lot of exhaustively researched links to film clips and animator websites too.

So you’d imagine that an exhibition like the Barbican’s Watch Me Move: The Animation Show (running until September 11th 2011) would be just up my street. And so it would. If there's any cause for concern, it's with the format - because this isn't a collection of still artwork, it's a collection of short films and clips. You know that irritating feeling you get hanging around outside a film installation in a gallery, waiting for it to go round to the beginning again? Imagine that feeling multiplied a hundred times or so. But if you're patient enough, there are some sights to be seen.

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Playing The Building

When was the last time you saw a piece of art that you could have a decent lie down to?

I know exactly when it was in my case: the Spring of 2004, when Olafur Eliasson's The Weather Project was coming to the end of its six-month installation in the Turbine Hall of London's Tate Modern. A combination of a mirrored ceiling, a faint mist in the air and a bloody enormous lighting rig came together to generate the illusion of a gigantic sun glowing away at one end of the hall. Faced with something of that magnitude, people reacted in the only way they could: lying on the floor and soaking it up (with the odd group of pranksters rearranging themselves or their belongings to spell out messages in the ceiling mirror).

David Byrne's Playing The Building, showing at the Roundhouse until August 31st 2009, may not be on the same gargantuan scale: but if you're not directly at the centre of it, I suspect that lying down may be the second best way of experiencing it.

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