Saturday, July 28, 2012


At precisely 8:12 yesterday morning I was on the street where I live, ringing a bell. I only got this bell last week and would have settled for anything but bells are surprisingly hard to find. I had almost given up when, in a charity shop, I chanced upon the unusual leaf-bedecked glass object you see below. 


I was part of a small crowd gathered at the junction of two roads, all swinging and happily banging their own bell-like things.
I hope people don't mind my posting photos of them; everyone was snapping so I guess it's okay.

Encouraging the performance was Sandy Nairne, Director of the National Portrait Gallery. He lives in the neighbourhood and was the one who exhorted us all to play our part in Martin Creed's Work No. 1197   welcoming the Olympics to London. Here he is holding up a radio so we can hear Big Ben joining the nation-wide artistic cacophony for three whole minutes. 

It was a wonderfully simple and effective community-enhancing moment. 

This spectator was wondering about the meaning of life, noise and everything.



Dominic Rivron said...

Sounds great fun - could have done with a bit of that here! If one is ever short of a bell one can usually find a household object to hang from a piece of string and strike. Things make the nicest noises when you tap them. (I love garden centres where they have rooms full of empty garden pots. One can create the strangest tunes and scales, going round tapping them).

Natalie d'Arbeloff said...

Dominic, I did want to improvise and many people did so, but I thought that a real bell was something I ought to have at home anyway and I'm glad I chanced upon that glass one. But garden pots are a great idea, I wish I'd tried that!

The event certainly was fun. Didn't the project reach the area where you live?

Dominic Rivron said...

Not that I know of. If it did, I wish I had known.