There are a number of things that I wish I had thought of before anyone else ; Cats Eyes, Velcro, Grocery Coupons, Wire Coat Hangers, the World Wide Web and so on but my odd flash of inspiration never seems to get traction beyond, 'be funny if that worked.'
How fantastic then that good friend Andy Ash has come up with a plan right off the "wish I'd thought of that,' shelf which is so simple in concept, even Blackadder would be proud. I'm trying, really I am, not to be envious, I'm pleased for him , honestly, and hope it's a roaring success. So, what is it?
Andy is a Caravaggio fan. The word fan does him something of an injustice, perhaps 'studious admirer,' is more appropriate. Now I do like to think that Crumble enjoy's a sophisticated and enlightened readership but for those of you who are staring blankly at the screen, Caravaggio is not a sixties folk band, nor is it a French cheese. Caravaggio was in fact a bloke who could paint a bit. In fact, he could paint rather well. On his website, Carry on Caravaggio, Andy describes how 'Canadian researcher Philip Sohm, recently established that in the past 50 years, Michaelangelo Caravaggio has overtaken that other famous Michelangelo – Buonarroti – as the favourite subject of art historical research. Perhaps it is because of his wild life: Caravaggio was a womaniser, a bisexual, a brawler, a pimp, a drinker, a murderer, a Knight of the Templar, a prison escapee.... in fact a full Shakespearean romantic tragic figure.' I've got your attention, what's Andy up to?
Not being a man given to standing around idly watching the world go by, it is Andy's intention to embark this Sunday, (20th), on a charity 'party' tour with the aim of seeing every Caravaggio painting in existence, 65 of them globally, in under 3 weeks in 50 locations. I wish I'd thought of that.
Being a clubbable sort he has invited friends to join him at locations various from Texas to St Petersburg and the resulting book of the experience, 'Carry on Caravaggio,' ought to be an entertaining read. Doubts expressed about the improbability of Andy and his chosen few remembering any of the experiences from Texas to St Petersburg may be well founded but what could be more in keeping of the reputation of the great man himself.
Anyone making the erroneous assumption that this is just a self indulgent hedonistic World Tour by a crisis struck middle aged man determined to tick off his one-item bucket list couldn't be more wrong. Apart from family, fine claret, a little known football team in South West London and Caravaggio, Andy cares deeply about two other things in life; a fine charity called Shelterbox, (provides disaster relief shelter and food across the world at moments of maximum distress and dislocation), and the Royal Academy of Arts. His Justgiving page is here where you can see a long list of friends prepared to donate to see the back of him for three weeks.
You can visit his Facebook page and keep up to date with his adventures here and of course, I hope to post the odd update on MC too.