The Summer Exhibition isn't on for very long, so I thought I'd better go to the Royal Academy of Arts before it shut.
I'm normally a bit of a cynic when it comes to stuff like this. If I see a pile of bricks in the Tate I'd want to kick it over, and stick it in a skip. And I thought this show was going to be more of that... amateur artists trying to flog bits of tat that they whipped up in ten minutes flat. But it actually wasn't too bad, they had some quite decent stuff on show.
When you go in you are given a little black book listing all the pieces on display and their prices, in case you want to buy them. I only had a fiver in my pocket so they were a bit out of my range. The cheapest one that I could see was £95 quid, and the most expensive was £108,000. Even the guidebook cost a tenner.
A lot of them were just normal landscapes and portraits... pictures of people doing everyday things from dancing and prancing to sleeping in a window-seat. Then you've got all your massive abstract ones too. One of them was just a big white board about 20-feet square with a tiny splash of colour halfway up. Probably took him about 5 minutes, and will earn him 50 grand. Some dumb mug will buy it though. Some of the worst examples were sculptures. Have you ever been in a pub and seen a rack of pool balls on the wall? Well, that was on sale for £7,200. And it was literally just a rack of pool balls. Nothing else! Another one was a dog with his head in a rubbish bin, which would go nice in the alley down the side of my house.
They also had a sculpture by Antony Gormley on display, whose name I actually recognise. It was called "Drift III". But I would call it "Load of bent wire stuck together". That one wasn't for sale, probably because no one is stupid enough to buy it.
The most famous person I saw on display was Tracey Emin. It was called "Me Too -- Glad To Hear I'm A Happy Girl" and was basically just a cream background with this written on it: "Glad Your A Happy Girl". Notice that she couldn't even spell the word "your" right. If I'm going to spend 18 grand on a painting then I'd at least want her to spell the bleedin' words right.
The best bit for me was a room full of architectural models that they'd probably mocked-up for the buyer, and decided to flog off when they lost the bid. They had a load of cut-away train stations and business parks done down to the minutest detail, with millimetre tall people running around the place.