Observations: Come to the butterfly ball
Friday 15 May 2009
What do Kate Winslet, Ricky Gervais and Tony Blair have in common? Aside from a propensity for making embarrassing speeches, that is. The answer, unexpectedly, lies with butterflies.
They are among 80 artists, designers, writers and politicians who have contributed to The Butterfly Book, a charity art book in aid of Leukaemia Research.
Winslet drew a "butterfly person", inspired by her daughter Mia, while Gervais, drawing on his Flanimals cartoons, provided a bigger, hairier version. Blair sent in a silk butterfly plucked from a display at an official dinner. Among the artists, Grayson Perry has dreamed up a typically outrageous killer insect with swastikas on its wings and nipple piercings (yes, his butterflies have nipples) while Cornelia Parker created a Rorschach blot of a butterfly using snake venom for ink. Other contributors, from a wide field, include Gavin Turk, Manolo Blahnik, Ewan McGregor, Maggi Hambling, Matthew Williamson, Alan Ayckbourn, and Quentin Blake.
Alongside the £25 hardback book there are also 70 limited-edition books for sale which come with one of the original artworks inside, costing £100. The artworks are pre-sealed and there is no way of choosing: like the popular Royal Academy postcard exhibition, it's a case of lucky dip, meaning you could end up with a £100 Peter Blake bargain or, less luckily, a doodle from Ann Widdecombe.
Among the non-visual contributions, Lembit Opik has written a verse comparing the flight of the butterfly to the unpredictability of life, Jeffrey Archer sent in an ode written by somebody else (plus ça change) and Jeanette Winterson summed up the transient appeal of the most beautiful – and rapidly disappearing – of insects with a poem: "I love them because they are so brief and so beautiful. A line of poetry. A run of colour. A bar of music. Gone."
Game of Thrones
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 The difference between a migrant and refugee, in one sentence
- 2 Miley Cyrus calls out hypocrisy of women’s nipples being taboo
- 3 Celebrity Big Brother 2015: Tila Tequila kicked off show after 'describing Hitler as a good man'
- 4 Watch the Supermoon live: How to see the brightest Moon of the year tonight
- 5 iPhone 5c to be discontinued, no iPhone 6c to replace it
Game of Thrones season 6: Jon Snow theorists believe Ned Stark's son may have a twin sister
Artist takes LSD, draws herself over different stages of the 9-hour trip to show its effects
These Harry Potter lipsticks are sparking all sorts of controversy with Hogwarts fans
Game of Thrones season 6: Director promises most exciting premiere yet 'starts off with a bang'
Hunted: Channel 4 to test 'surveillance Britain' by taking Big Brother to sinister new lengths
Climate change: 2015 will be the hottest year on record 'by a mile', experts say
'Women only' train carriages: Jeremy Corbyn unveils radical move to tackle public harassment
Black holes are a passage to another universe, says Stephen Hawking
Iain Duncan Smith 'should resign over disability benefit death figures', says Jeremy Corbyn
Stock up on canned food for stock market crash, warns former Gordon Brown adviser
Labour leadership: Jeremy Corbyn voters most likely to believe 'world is controlled by a secretive elite'