After the recent success of his hoax art work called, “Swimming Pool”, my artist friend Elton has already begun planning his next big project. The creative mind never stands still. And I should know. The show apartment interiors I am designing in the East End of London are reaching a crucial magnolia coloured wall painting phase. I mean, how exciting is that?
“Have you ever been seen naked in public?” Elton asked me on the telephone last night.
“No, never,” I said. There was no need to divulge any details to Elton about that night in Bognor. What happens in Bognor, stays in Bognor. As they say in Bognor.
“Good,” that was all Elton said, and then he hung up.
I just happened to say to Elton that ever since Guido unwittingly became a participant in his last installation (see my earlier post called Pool Party) I had been feeling pretty left out. Elton said he couldn’t promise a future role in anything but would see what he could do. Nobody said anything about getting naked though. It turns out Elton’s next piece is going to involve participants, who are completely naked, being filmed standing next to iconic British landmarks or landscapes. The reactions of complete strangers looking on will then be recorded on film. The idea is that they’ll be torn between looking at the naked person or the landmark or landscape. I can imagine exactly how they might feel. Let’s just say if Bear Grylls was standing stark naked outside the gates of Buckingham Palace I know what I would be looking at.
“But how would you feel about taking your clothes off in public, say, next to Big Ben?” said Guido. We were eating dinner and inexplicably I just happened to be prodding at a small chipolata sausage with my fork at the time. “Complete strangers will be looking at bits of your anatomy which you have never even let me see before.” He was making it sound like I only ever had sex with him whilst wearing a suit of armour (and whilst I am referring to old posts, see Nothing To Compare To Guido). Come to think of it, that could work nicely, especially if we were doing it with the lights on.
“I suppose it could be liberating in a Gok Wan – How to Look Good Naked – sort of a way,” I said. For readers outside of the UK please feel to explore YouTube at this point.
“If you think it would help we could always put in some practice beforehand,” said Guido. “Just to get you used to the feeling of taking your clothes off in front of other people you have never met before.” He sounded quite convincing. He also had a weird look on his face. Like the one he gets when he is vigorously grating cheese over macaroni. Suddenly I had this vision of Guido propping me up nude on a stool in The Spanish Onion café window bang on London rush hour, with only a strategically placed pretzel covering my modesty.
“Perhaps it would be better if I just stuck to overseeing the painting of walls with magnolia paint,” I said. “It won’t be so exciting but generally speaking there should be no need for anyone to call the Metropolitan Police.”