Ursula Martinez' stories and emails

It’s been a while since we have really taken advantage of living in this cultural hub but now we are getting into a stream of events again and hopefully I’ll get around to blog about them.

This weekend started off with a visit to a black box. Not just any box however it was Miroslaw Balka’s Box of Darkness at Tate Modern. A huge steel box that as you entered it completely covered you in darkness. It is 30 meters deep and as you walk in you can’t see anything – until you hit the back wall. A quite eerie sensation produced by simple means.

Last night we went to a sold out Pit at the Barbican to see Ursula Martinez. If that name doesn’t ring a bell you might remember the video of her doing a magic striptease trick that made it’s rounds on the interweb around 2006. She never intended for her act to be film but it did and eventually ended up online which caused a torrent of attention and fan mail.

Ursula Martinez : My Stories, Your Emails

Now she has turned this unsought celebrity status into a new show called My Stories, Your Emails which we saw last night and it was hilarious. First part was her telling embarrassing and funny stories from her life unrelated to the video. Then she showed the infamous clip and second part was her reading emails she received as response to the video. She did this while showing pictures sent along by the emailers and she impersonated the different accents of the people who have written her. I thoroughly enjoyed the show and so did Ann and who knows when I can watch striptease with her again without complaints 😉

We didn’t really know anything about the show before we went but it has been interesting to read up on the reviews and criticism of the ethics – or lack thereof of the show.

Invisible Children at UCL

Last night Ann and I went to a presentation and discussion about the child soldiers of Central Africa and Global Citizenship.

It started out as a civil war in Uganda but today, more than 20 years later, the conflict continues as a terror regime where the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) continue to abduct children and mutilation and slaughter the local population. The LRA has caused the lives of thousands and dispalcement of millions of people in Uganda, DR. Congo and Sudan.

Invisible Children started out as a film project for three American guys and has turned into a grass-root organization trying to help the children affected by the conflict. It’s a conflict that hasn’t had much focus which is what the Invisible Children organization tries to do and one of the things discussed in the panel debate was how to bring attention to it.

The story is heartbreaking and what the organization is doing is really admirable in trying to give these kids a chance for an education and meaningful life. Until the conflict comes to an end it is worth reminding ourselves and our governments that we should not just stand by as this happens.

See the whole documentary Invisible Children: Rough cut.