J & I took the plunge yesterday morning and waited in line for almost five hours to see Banksy's exhibition at Bristol City Gallery. We arrived at 8.30am and followed the queue as it snaked up and away alongside the Victoriana of Bristol's Clifton back streets. It was a very British queue. There was little complaint and a little bit of banter. Five hours just flew by. I pointed out to Jacob that if ever there were major oil/food/utilities shortages, this was his training. His blank expression became a little blanker.
We made several errors in planning for our queue-athon:
- we didn't take folding chairs
- I only took one section of the newspaper
- Jacob took nothing with him
- our picnic consisted of two apples and one banana
- I took my ipod but not my headphones
- I neglected to take a flask
Five hours, once over, doesn't feel that long and I'm pleased we got there. I'm not the hugest fan of Banksy but he is Bristol through and through and I'm sure the gallery has never been part of such an extravaganza before. I have a fleeting sense of pity for the exhibition that follows. How will they ever live up to daily queues and such enthusiasm? He's spoilt it for everyone else.
The main exhibition was pretty interesting and I liked the installation with stencils and sketches. I like his jokes and his comments and the wittiness of some of the work. Some of it just seemed a little, well, jokey. I suspect I'm not quite in the relevant demographic.
There was a fantastic Britannia with a CCTV camera for a staff. I enjoyed that. I also enjoyed the craft some of the work involved, the cutting, the collage, the printing. It looks good. It will be interesting to see what happens to Banksy and his work now it's appeared in his/her(?) hometown gallery.