My wife and I were looking for a picture for one of our lounge walls. I was in favour of leaving it blank to avoid clutter. Anyway, I liked the colour of the wallpaper and didn’t want to cover up any part of it.
No! We had to have something to fill that space, dictated my wife. So, one rainy afternoon, I found myself in an art gallery.
Now, I don’t usually go into art galleries because I never really learned “ how to look” at a painting. There was a course like that at the YMCA, I remembered. It was listed under Adult Education. I didn’t enrol.
I never appreciated the “ Mona Lisa”. I thought if some woman was sitting alone at my local bar who looked like the “ Lisa”, I wouldn’t buy her a drink.
When my wife said she wanted something on that wall, I suggested a calendar. One with beautiful landscapes for every month. That was not chic, said my wife.
So, here I am, cocking my head back and forth, staring at paintings and mumbling to myself.
The woman owner of the gallery came over to us and said: “Do you like that painting?”
“ Yes,” I said. I lied. The painting we were looking at was a multicoloured object. Streaks of all colours were going off in all directions. My wife said it was just the right size for our wall. I thought even my long lost cousin wouldn’t like this picture.
The owner of the gallery smiled and said: “ The nice thing about this painting is that you can hang it any way and it looks good.”
She proceeded to turn the picture around in all directions to prove it to us.
Now, I knew I was ignorant of visual art. But, I would never turn the picture of my Grandfather upside down. It would be too scary.
“ Very interesting,” I said.
“ This picture is on sale for only £1000,” she smiled.
I gulped. My wife was silent. It probably wasn’t such a bad deal considering you could hang it in any direction.
I said we would think about it and I steered my wife towards the door.
Next week, I’m going to a calendar shop, with my long lost cousin!