Factual Uncertainties: Don’t Panic, Peacock!

“100% of all lottery-winners gain weight”

For those of you unfamiliar with writer, illustrator, broadcaster and fortune-cookie-making philosophiser Leila Peacock, here is a picture of her voicebox:

voice box 6

“Cats cannot see the colour blue”

If by any chance that voicebox does look familiar, it could well be that you’ve heard it before, as we worked on a couple of pieces together for Radiophonic Creation Day 2011, which can be found on the Radio page of this site. But right now I want to draw your attention to her latest work, entitled ‘Factual Uncertainties’, currently being featured on the German arm of the Don’t Panic! website.

don't panic logo“Clicking on this logo doesn’t achieve much”

The actual page can be viewed here in all it’s attractively-designed glory. I must say the good folk of Don’t Panic really do know how to make an nice-looking webpage. And their pictures don’t have silly grey borders that I can’t remove around them. Anyway, I’ve included the audio here, for your convenience. It’s about 18 minutes long and contains some very peculiar nuggets indeed, so grab your ear-goggles and pop the kettle on:

A development of a piece performed at the Voidhaus, Berlin in July 2011 entitled ‘Digressions in Diagrammar’. A voice reads from a list of reliably unreliable ‘facts’. It’s a poetry of lists, (mis)information as entertainment, instruction-manual hypnosis. In this era of the over-informed, you learn something useless everyday.

With sound design by Robin Warren (Resonance FM)

I may or may not be loosely affiliated with Mr. Warren. All I will say is that I don’t mind some of his work…

“The World-Record for not blinking is 11 minutes”

i only have eyes for you...

“29% of people like to make car-noises when they drive”

Baby-Grands And Bagels For Eyes: The Return Of The Art Party

Question:  One of these men is in fancy dress. Which one?

If there’s one thing that a photograph featuring a be-horned person with bagels for eyes must surely signify, it’s that another event curated by The Art Party is in effect. And so it is.

Once again the good folk of The Art Party are taking over Mol’s Place for another celebration of all that is good and right in the modern art world (there’s also a bar and canapés, but that’s purely a fringe-benefit). And this time it’s rather poignant occasion, as they are bidding goodbye to this most splendid of arts spaces, owned by collector and patron of the arts Jan Mol, who will shortly be giving up the gallery’s Covent Garden location and moving onto to pastures anew. Determined to see the venue off in fine style, the night included a mixture of painting, installation, sculpture and performance, including a live set by accapella and cassette-recorder trio Goodbye Leopold and myself as the DJ-ing glue that held it all together. Or perhaps the buttercream filling between the performance layers. Whichever analogy you prefer.

Goodbye Leopold – Hello Leotard

The point I’m trying rather clumsily to make is that I was DJing at this splendid soiree, filling in the gaps between the performances and trying to avoid this one woman who kept demanding I play some Sting.  For those of you not lucky enough to have been added to the exclusive guest-list, I’ve included some of the music played on the night here for your enjoyment. As you’ll hear, the artist formerly known as Gordon Sumner is mercifully absent:

Vodpod videos no longer available.


Vodpod videos no longer available.


It was a four-hour set in total, though unfortunately time and other, more physical constraints prevent me from including everything here. Still, who really has time to do anything for four hours without stopping these days? And besides, I think these two little extracts contain the gist of the proceedings.  It was a sad moment leaving the gallery for the last time (although when I finally left after packing all my gear away, someone was blasting out The Black-Eyed Peas at skull-crushing volume, which rather burst my poignant farewell bubble).  A good time was had by all, with the possible exception of the chap who had to lug that Baby Grand Piano up the stairs.  I wonder where The Art Party will turn up next?  Wherever it is, I do hope I get the chance to play for them again, and that the whole Sting-debacle hasn’t irretrievably blotted my copybook.

Let The Fog See The Koala – Panel Borders 02/10/11 on Resonance FM

A very special edition of Panel Borders, the UK’s only radio show on comics, illustration and other graphic delights featuring an exclusive interview with Canadian turntablist and graphic novelist Kid Koala!

Otherwise known by his alter-ego of mild-mannered Eric San, Kid Koala is a world-renown DJ, music producer and cartoonist hailing from Montreal. Best known for a series of delightfully odd-ball albums released on the Ninja Tune label (often including a free comic book), 2011 has seen the publication of his second graphic novel ‘Space Cadet’, which comes with its own bespoke soundtrack. On vinyl, no less!

The Kid has also been travelling around of late presenting a series of ‘Music To Draw To’ events, where pens and paper are mandatory accessories and the audience sit around drawing to an ‘inspirational’ DJ set. This most recent event, which doubled as a sort of unofficial launch for the book; took place within the very pleasant confines of the Material / Red Gallery in London’s fashionable Shoreditch area.  Sketchbook in hand, I attended the recent London leg of his tour to talk robots, etch-boards and the Canadian work-ethic.  It was broadcast by Resonance 104.4FM on Ocotber 2nd 2011, and is now available as a podcast right here:

Or you could also download it by visiting it’s page on the Resonance FM website here

Interviewing such an instantly-likeable, softly spoken chap (except when he laughs – which is often!) made for some curious recording levels and a few clashes with the air-conditioning, but none-the-less, I hope this programme will entertain and inspire. ‘Music To Draw To’ was certainly an inspirational enough with a room literally bursting at the seams with talent, all sitting around nibbling cake and beavering away.

Stolen from http://www.materialmaterial.com. Blurry, but functional...

In fact, for added visual stimuli, why not listen while staring at the pictures below? This first one was created by graphic artist and blogger Andy Paterson in real time as the Kid ripped into some classic Hepburn:

Kid Koala at 'Music to Draw To' by Andy Paterson.

Andy proved most unpopular on our side of the table by effortlessly making all of our creations look like crap in comparison. To prove it, here’s a slightly dodgy one of mine, that certainly hasn’t benefitted from the amount of time I put into photographing it:

And lastly, let us turn to this affable chap called Ollie, whose contact details I have since lost and therefore cannot be properly credited (unless we can track him down). Which is a shame, as I think this drawing wraps up the spirit of the evening rather neatly:

Oh, and one more thing, because you’re lovely: Here’s a ‘wildtrack’ recording of Kid Koala ripping up the aforementioned Hepburn. I include it here because it’s rather obscured on the finished programme, and frankly, it’s too ace to just sit there and be a backdrop:

If you have any pictures of Space Cadets, Kid Koala, Kids, Koalas, Cadets or Space, do send them to robinthefog@gmail.com and I promise I’ll look at and perhaps act on them. In the meantime, remember: pens are your friends!