Conventions have always (subliminally) ruled the art world, but conventions mutate. White wine is the usual choice for gallery openings, unless, like Rex Irwin Art Dealer, you generously stretch to gin and tonic. But in the 1950s, it was sherry - usually sweet - which exercised newspaper cartoonists regularly. Tongue-in-cheek articles appeared regularly in the broadsheets. "Art is smart nowadays, so go to the opening of every exhibition - there are at least three a fortnight. You won't know a Dobell from a Drysdale, but you can bone up on the critics' reviews. Anyway, you don't have to look at the pictures - just be there and be decorative."
03 Mar 2013 (about 1 year ago)