Laura Gascoignes art-world fable, The Horses Arse, which launched this week in London, includes a cast of strangely familiar characters. The art critic of The Tablet (and The Art Newspaper contributor) has spun a satirical tale, featuring a mega-gallerist who employs goons for his glitzy private views; the politically-savvy director of the State Gallery needing millions to build an extension; and a pound-shop billionaire (deceased) with a vast collection of Cool British Art that his family want to flog. The anti-hero is a cash-strapped artist who knocks out fake Modern masters to keep the wolf from the studio door. Gascoignes morality tale conveys the tangled web of the global art world with comic verve and a fine turn of phrase. The ripping yard includes fakery, fraud, kidnapping, record-setting auction sales and a Rothko-esque series of murals (only less abstract) that takes the fancy of an Emirati royal building a new museum, money no object.
The Horse's Mouth or The Shed of Revelation by Laura Gascoigne is published by Clink Street