Skinny White Sailor

Skinny White Sailor

Robert Rubbish takes Cathi Unsworth on A Drift through Soho…

…then to the Bateman Buildings (Skiny White Sailor)…

CU Well, we all want a homage to the sailors and working girls of the district that populate all the above books and, of course, the works of Patrick Hamilton, Julian MacLaren-Ross and Daniel Farson’s essential Soho in the Fifties… I believe this was once the site of The Duke of Monmouth’s stately home and was described in 1895 by William Le Queux as: “a short, paved court, lined on each side by grimy, squalid-looking houses, the court itself forming the playground of a hundred or so spirited juveniles of the unwashed class.”

RR I didn’t know it was the site of Duke of Monmouth’s stately home but I like this –another layer! I have used sailors a lot in my work for Spiritus Soho as the sailor represents the pleasure-seeker of the past looking for a good time. The working girls of Soho’s past I have read about in books like Barbara Tate’s West End Girls and Streetwalker: An Autobiographical Account of Prostitution 1960. There’s a great photo of working girls lined up on a Soho street in the daytime, prior to the Street Offences Act of 1959.

Archival Giclee print on German etching paper
signed and numbered by the artist
limited edition of 100
A3 297 x 420 mm

90 GBP