MONA + Hosting


Graffiti by Jamin, Tom O’Hern and Rob O’Connor Vip’s eh? Well done. Well. Fucking. Done. 2013 (detail) P: D. Eckersley, originally uploaded by cubamxc.

Vip’s eh? Well done. Well. Fucking. Done.

Back to MONA, this time approached by MONA Roma 1 or MR-1, along the Derwent. MONA would have to be one of the few places open Good Friday. Luckily Walsh is an atheist. In the Posh Pit we’re served drinks, canapés and the question “So, have we all been to Easter service this morning?” and we all burst out laughing.

We’ve started to debrief about what we like and not so much: like the dimmed lighting, arguably overly theatrical, it’s a fine line, but it’s a relief not to be attacked by bright sunlight; the O, not so much, it’s spatially distracting; we really like the hospitality, this attention to detail, it’s welcoming. And we learn that all the front of house services are worked by hospitality staff.

It reminds us of a documentary about the Eames, which not only emphasised Ray Eames’ contribution to the partnership, but also their attention to the importance of being a good host. The care invested in a guest-host relationship, versus consumer, is a critical distinction.

We arrive, this time to see whatever we’ve missed. Namely, Death Galley with the mummy and coffin of Pausiris, and Christian Boltanski’s The Life of C.B. 2010-. What Boltanski’s has reportedly described as a Faustian deal with the devil. Boltanski has agreed for his studio to be live streamed and recorded in exchange for a monthly stipend. It’s a gamble, should Boltanski live longer than eight years, Walsh will lose the bet by paying more than the work is worth. “Walsh has assured me I will die before the eight years is up because he never loses. He’s probably right. I don’t look after myself very well.”

Related links and posts:
Eames: The Architect and The Painter 2011
“We don’t really buy into flavours” 17 February 2009
Hey Pippa, what’s with the metal? Thought you’re a minimalist, 17 February 2009

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