Saturday 2 August 2014

Edinburgh Fringe 1984 - Judy Chicago

In 1984 a young couple paid their first visit to the Edinburgh Fringe, these are some of their souvenirs. In the photos we see street entertainers, a fixture of the Royal Mile since time immemorial. The crowds have got bigger, the ghetto blasters smaller, most of the schtick hasn't changed since the fifteenth century.

The top ticket you can see is from an art installation, Judy Chicago's Dinner Party, which cost more than most shows to visit (the lunchtime cabaret below it was just a quid for a two hour show). The Dinner Party is a collection of ceramic plates, their surfaces reminiscent of female genitalia (comedian Tony Allen observed "there'll still be Mums going 'you haven't licked yours clean yet'"), representing over 1000 famous women from history. It now resides in the Brooklyn Museum

The venue which housed this touring show of The Dinner Party, the Victoria Hall, has gone through a variety of uses in the subsequent three decades. After a long time as a craft centre housing various small designers' stalls it suffered a fire from which it emerged as an Irish theme pub and a nightclub. Google Earth still shows it as a disused building with To Let signs outside, but for Edinburgh Fringe 2014 it is home to the new La Favorita Freestival.

The Scottish Falsetto Sock Puppet Theatre ...And So Am I is at the Edinburgh Fringe 2014, July 30 - Aug 25 Gilded Balloon, 10.30pm

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