New Orleans has an eclectic-electric atmosphere and in February, Mardi Gras is televised live to the whole of the USA on 'Fat Tuesday, 21st February 2012'.
That morning from our room at the famous Roosevelt Hotel (where the young Louis Armstrong was in resident for his early career) we could see from our window a Pop-Up billboard in the distant skyline. From their floats The Krewe of Zulu and The Krewe of Rex were parading along Canal Street and St Charles Street throwing beaded necklaces and other objects to the adulation of the screaming crowds. The effect of watching the live T.V. and seeing one of the Pop-Up Billboards in the distant skyline, merging together with the droning hum of the masses, was a sublime duplication of the message at the core of Portal. Reality vs Fantasy, turned upside down and inside out. Perceptions, imperceptibly merged.
The heavy thunder storms that had preceded the day and set the streets of New Orleans a-flow had gone, so we seized the moment, fighting the conta-flow of the masses and made our way on foot to Tchoupitoulas, the street that runs along the Mississippi and is the urban entrance to the French Quarter of New Orleans, where the adventure begins and the hyper-real unfolds. An appropriate place for a Phillippo and Phillippo artwork to welcome all the visitors to Mardi Gras.
Phillippo and Phillippo artwork thrives on the electric atmosphere and the trip to New Orleans promised to be full of artistic opportunity. The Crescent City or 'Big Easy' offers a diverse bohemia of French and Spanish influence, traditional Roman Catholic infused with the occult and the bright colourful psychedelia of improvised jazz. Plus many art forms too numerous to count, played out by iconic larger than life characters. We took full advantage of serendipity and captured many a fleeting moment 'artwork for the future'.
The big idea of the Pop-Up campaign was to integrate 'art' into the festivities of New Orleans using unorthodox methods and celebrate culture.
Flanking the parade routes of the Mardi Gras and displayed throughout the city were 20ft x 16ft original artworks by international artists.
Phillippo and Phillippo displayed 'Portal- the triptych' on Tchoupitoulas. The original artworks were also exhibited as part of the Art Below "Pop Up" Group Show at the Gallery Orange located in the world famous French Quarter.
Where sexual identity finds a new dimension
A conceptual photograph, part of a series produced in correlation with the
conceptual sculpture 'Get yer ya-yas out!'
(Originally shown in the 2011 Phillippo and Phillippo solo exhibition 'All mouth, no trousers')
'If the curtain of illusion hides the dark light of reality,
why do we stand behind the curtain with eyes wide shut?'
Phillippo and Phillippo
"We look for unique locations, full of character, history, and sexual ambience."
The Big Belly Oak is one of the oldest trees in England. Its lichen-covered, twisted, gnarled, wrinkled trunk and branches have witnessed over a thousand years of English history.
Since the time of William The Conqueror, the Royal Hunting Forest of Savernake has spawned the imagination. Those who live within Savernake talk of the tree and ghostly goings-on; witches covens, iron age temples and tales of eerie sounds coming from deep within the blackness of the forest.
According to local legend, the devil appears to anyone who dances naked at midnight twelve times anti-clockwise around the Big Belly Oak.
In 1535 Jane Seymour first met King Henry VIII while he was hunting with Sir John Seymour in the forest. Local tradition has it that King Henry proposed to Jane under the branches of the Big Belly Oak.