As an empolyee of TBWA\Manchester there is great scheme available where you recieve half a day off once a quarter to go and do some thing cultural.
This is the story of my Culture Club afternoon.
With the current quarter ending on Thursday and free slots rapidly dwindling I quickly booked mine for Monday afternoon with the intention of going to see Rafael Lozano-Hemmer's exhibition at the Manchester Art Gallery, however I arrived to find gallery is closed on Mondays.
Annoyed at my lack of preparation, I quickly hot footed it across to the Cube gallery on Portland street, as there is usually some good little exhibitions on there. Although on Monday it just seemed to be hosting a forum on energy saving from Calor. I did manage to snap a pictures of the seemingly only piece of work being displayed.
So after these two disasters, I made a beeline for the Cornerhouse, but alas their 3 galleries were also closed (for changeover this time). All that was left to do was to take stock with a tasty beverage in the Cornerhouse's fine cafe/bar. At this point I recieved a phone call from Matt Cook, who was also on his Culture Club afternoon and suffering a similar fate to myself. After doing exactly the same route, he was now in the Northern Quarter finding the galleries closed there too.
Do people really not visit galleries on Mondays?
After much deliberation (and some beer), I decided to check out a film at the Cornerhouse. There was one film on, Enter the Void. Its got pretty good reviews and I watched a cheeky trailer on my iPhone which looked cool.
I was warned by two separate cinema employees about the use of strobe lighting and flashing effects as well as the threat of motion sickness during the film. This only made my anticipation of the film grow, however what I wasn't warned about was that the sickness felt by previous viewers of the film probably wasn't caused by the portions of the film shot in the first person, but was probably due to some of the the subject matter.
Now, this is a good film. Its shot in a pretty cool way, and uses some interesting and very stylised techniques. Some of the cut scenes do go on for far too long however, and about halfway through it suddenly becomes the most unexpectidly (porno)graphic film I've seen. I certainly felt "cultured" by the time I left!
I did also manage to squeeze in a walk through the set of the Hollywood blockbuster "Captain America" being filmed on my doorstep in the Northern Quarter on my way home. Below are a few snaps taken on my iPhone, for more information, (better) photos and videos on the filming check out this great blog, captainamericafilmingmanchester.co.uk.
Here is a video of the scene where the fire damaged car in my photos is being blown up.
All in all it was a great half day even if it did get off to a slow start, with the culture having to be hunted down. So next time round and to avoid seeing a man reaching the point of climax from inside a woman, I might just do a bit more preparation. #cultureclub