30 April 2023


 Underneath the arches.....

Flanagan and Allen.... The great couplings.  Wilson, Keppel and Betty (no that's three....). Wilbur and Orville Wright, Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall, Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera, Homer and Marge Simpson.....  Oh, and Gilbert and George....,

Whose new gallery just off Brick Lane is a joy to visit, whether the

Pavement is our pillow
Without a sheet we'll lay

Underneath the arches

We (will) dream our dreams away

And dreaming is what it comes down to.....

I'm in London for a day or two, paying respect to the great and the good, and offering disrespect where it is due:

I laze a little, with Italy in mind:

Then wander a while in Hyde Park:

Reminiscing a little of the days when I visited this Police Station for reasons I won't go into here:

Then relaxing a moment in the shade of FDR in Grosvenor Square:

While young things prepare themselves for the upcoming celebrations of the unctions of Konig Karl von Battenberg:

Ah, but I'm not here for the fun nor the unctions.... 

The Ritz we never signed for
Savoys they can keep

No. I'm trolling (Shome mishtake?  Ed) along the South Bank with Simon Ellingworth (Multi Award Winning Photographer & Educator), in an attempt to steal some images of life as it really is.....

Starting with the Tate Modern, where concrete brutalism decapitates the passer-by:

A screen in the old oil tanks continuously plays with the shadows:

The structure of the Turbine Hall puts all in their place, section by section:

While windows obscure stories that could be interesting - or which may be just so:

I like to think that Love exists: but as with all art, maybe it's just a passing fancy - a flash between two mobiles?

Upstairs the clouds are gathering.  A shy guardian marshals the strays, while the ceiling lowers:

Sleeping when it's raining
And sleeping when it's fine

It's nice to see people quietly reflecting:

Or letting time coil by:

In colour, or in black and white:

And it is good to know that, despite the brickwork, there is a world outside:

Then we are outside, again, and 

Underneath the arches
We dream our dreams away (bon-bon-bo-da-be-do)

Sleeping when it's raining

And sleeping when it's fine

Trains rattling by above (bon-bo-bo-da-bi-da-bo)

There are truths in lies. Perhaps:

Earth has not anything to show more fair


these are not drunk, as you suppose, since it is only the third hour of the day.

London and I have been friends, of sorts, for over sixty years. There have been, as in most friendships, moments of friction, but I am not (yet) tired of life, and our relationship continues to grow. I accept that everything changes, from black and white:

To colour:

From noughts, to crosses:

Some people walk down concrete stairways, as if they're under orders:

While others indulge their tastes with clear expressions of delight:

The young record their progress:

And life goes on, whatever we may prefer.....

Underneath the arches


We dream our dreams away (bon-bon-bo-da-be-do)

There's only one place that we know
And that is where we sleep......

Pavement is our pillow
Without a sheet we'll lay
Underneath the arches
We dream our dreams away

Bud Flanagan, Joseph Mccarthy Jr. and Reg Connelly

With many thanks to Simon Ellingworth, Gilbert and George and Flanagan and Allen


  1. Brother Simon1 May 2023 at 09:20


  2. So enjoyed this! Some echo as we wander through Bologna and its colonnades teaming with young people and coloured in terracotta, brick and graffiti galore. X Harriet

  3. Simon Ellingworth3 May 2023 at 07:54

    Wonderfully put together, a pleasure to spend time with you and some great images.