The Badminton Game

Graham Ovenden is an artist who has recently been convicted of child sexual abuse. It turns out that the young naked girls he used as models, he also used for sexual abuse. The Tate Gallery has removed all his paintings from their permanent display. Those paintings were trophies of the abuse, and the public was invited to worship them, support them, give their energy and consent to the paintings, and therefore the abuse that lay behind them.

The Badminton Game is a painting owned by The Tate Gallery. The artist, David Inshaw, is a close colleague of Graham Ovenden. This painting is being given huge publicity at the moment, and is currently on display in a secure glass case at the Victoria Art Gallery in Bath (my home town). At first sight, it is an innocent game, two fully clothed girls in long dresses in an English Stately home garden, playing badminton.

I don’t like the painting. It gives me the creeps. A nearby square tower has no lower windows and looks like a prison. The tree behind the game is phallic, though Inshaw claims to have not noticed that until recently. The atmosphere is dark and foreboding. The display in Bath also includes studies that Inshaw did in preparation for his final piece. One study shows a replica of The Badminton Game, but the badminton net and two girls replaced by one naked young girl. The naked girl looks meek and powerless in the same way that Ovenden’s paintings of girls do.

I think The Badminton Game is a cover story for sexual abuse of girls, and the painting is a way of displaying that to the public as a trophy, and getting our worship, our energy and consent. The painting is called “iconic”. An icon means you click on it and you go to what’s behind it. Click on the fully clothed girls playing badminton, and you get one naked submissive girl behind the icon.

Let’s follow the history of the painting…

Clifton, Bristol…
Inshaw worked as a teacher at the Royal West of England Academy in Clifton, Bristol. Coincidentally, this is just two streets away from Badminton School for girls, also in Clifton. In 1969 the college moved across the bridge to Bower Ashton, now named the West of England College of Art, and Inshaw went with it, working there until 1975.

The Broad Heath Brotherhood…
David Inshaw set up this group of artists in 1971 with Graham and Ann Arnold. It was supposedly named after Elgar’s birthplace, Broadheath, but also coincides with Edward Heath being Prime Minister at the time. Edward Heath is a known paedophile, as yet unconvicted, linked to Savile and the Jersey childrens home.

The painting…
It was painted in 1972/73. During the time of the painting, Inshaw met Sir Peter Blake, who was already famous for the iconic Sergeant Pepper album cover, part of the elite controlled Beatles cover up. According to Inshaw, it was at a dinner party in Bath where he met Blake that the badminton idea came to him, through a girl he sat next to. The painting background was already complete, and needed something else. Maybe this was actually the idea to disguise the naked girl with a game of badminton, to create the “more universal deeper meaning” he talks about.

The Brotherhood of Ruralists…
Formed in 1975, only 2 years after the painting was completed, this was an expansion of the earlier Brotherhood to include two more couples, Peter Blake and his partner, and Annie and Graham Ovenden. Three couples plus Inshaw. The Brotherhood was based in Wellow near Bath. By 1984, Inshaw, Blake, and Blake’s partner had left, but the others continued, sometimes joined by Blake. What was it they continued with? Painting is solitary work, what were the group activities?

Ovenden…
Graham Ovenden’s history of paedophilia is from the years 1972 to 1984. This is the period of time from the painting being done to the end of the Brotherhood, and almost exactly matches the time period of the two Brotherhoods. The theme of Ovenden’s abuse is that families and children come to visit him in his large country home. Children pose as models for his paintings. This modelling extends to sexual activities. Games, such as a blindfold based one, are invented to lure them in, and the games then turn sexual. Coincidentally, The Badminton Game is a game in a country house garden.

10 Downing Street…
The painting was given to the Tate Gallery in 1980, and since then, has spent much of its time hanging in 10 Downing Street, maybe as a sort of trophy. Last year, under the cover story of the London Olympics, the garden of Number 10 was set up as a Badminton Game. David Cameron plays badminton with two very young looking girls. He is filmed in the two same poses as the girls in the painting. The stage was set, and the players had their script. It’s like a real life version of the painting.

Bath Society of Artists…
The current exhibition in Bath is the annual Bath Society of Artists Open exhibition, the most visited one of the year. David Inshaw has been president of the society since 2002, so is still very much linked to the Bath Art scene. The “open” exhibition means anyone can enter to have their stuff up on show, though I guess that Inshaw bypassed the selection procedure. The Royals sneak in (as usual) to the story here, because Paul Elmsley, famous for the weird witchy Kate portrait, has some pieces on display. I am slightly alarmed at the number of people I know directly involved in this exhibition, which shows to me how easily completely un-evil people get knotted up with evil, believing it to be something good and worthwhile.

And now for the history of the Game of Badminton…

The Game of Badminton…
It started in India just as cricket did. It’s a very British upper class sort of game. The elites invented it. In the 1800’s it was introduced as a game for the guests of the Duke of Beaufort whose family seat is Badminton House. Badminton is not far north of Bath, and just down the road from Prince Charles in Highgrove. The Badminton Horse Trials take place here too, well attended by Royalty and other elites.

Mixed Doubles…
It’s the only Olympic Sport to have mixed doubles. This might be a euphemism for things that went on. The Badminton Game seems to represent male sexual abuse of underage girls.

The Shuttlecock…
The Wikipedia definition of the shuttlecock says “shuttle” refers to the “back and forth motion”. That means we have a cock in a back and forth motion. Wikipedia says the “cock” part of the name is “probably” because the feathers remind people of cock feathers. The feathers are actually goose or duck.

Badminton School…
…was established at Badminton House in 1858, after the Game of Badminton was introduced there for Beaufort’s elite guests. The school is a boarding school for girls. Perhaps this provided a supply of young girls for The Badminton Game? Girls who were separated from their families, and cared for by the school. The girls in the painting are dressed in old fashioned clothes, which go back to well before the time of the painting. In 1924, the school relocated to Clifton, near the RWE, where Inshaw was a teacher from 1966.

Badminton Models…
Badminton School currently offers girls as models to their local paper in an email… “they speak extremely well and take a good picture”. Maybe the school has a history of supplying models, models for the Badminton Game, models for artists.

I think Badminton is code for a sex game…

Three meanings…
The Badminton Game is a painting, a sport, and a sexual game. The painting and the sport both refer to the sexual game if you know how to read the mask. We are trained to see the painting and the sport as innocent. Yet those in the know are directing our attention and energy towards their version of the game. It seems to me they need to have our consent and our worship of what they do. This is how they justify their evil actions as being “I have done nothing wrong”. And this is why they are wheeling out this painting, to get our approval.

The Game…
The Game of Badminton seems to lead to some sexual result. This is what the painting represents. I don’t know how this works, but maybe there is a winner and a loser. Maybe the result of the game determines the outcome for the girls involved. And maybe the girls believe it’s ok because they are sent there by their parents and their school. Young girl badminton players are similarly sent to the Olympics as a great thing to do, endorsed and supported by everyone. If you are really good, you get to play with the PrimeMinister in his garden. The TRIAL of the Badminton Horses, and the COURT of the Badminton Game reminds me that some sort of judgement and punishment, penalty, could be involved, just like our penal (or is it penis?) system. Every sport has a referee, and every court has a judge.

Interviews…
A recent interview with Inshaw on 27th June, just before the Bath exhibition opened, has Inshaw talking about his Art. “I think the only ingredient that brings it all together is sex. That’s the only thing that matters”. Oh, I thought it was about the beautiful innocence of rural life, silly me. In the blurb accompanying the Bath exhibition, he says, “I was very much in love with the two girls”. Another interview describes how he has a picture of one of the Badminton girls on his wall at home. Which one? There are three altogether.

The Combat of Love and Chastity…
This is a painting that Inshaw says he took inspiration from. The name seems to confirm the dual nature of The Badminton Game. The young girls he is not supposed to touch (Chastity), in combat with a sexual desire for them, which is termed “Love”. Just like paedophilia actually translates to “love of children”. Which won? Does the game represent Love and Chastity on either side of the net? Who wins? who loses? who is to blame? And what is the consequent outcome?

Blame…
The original name of the painting was “Remembering mine the loss is, not the blame”. Maybe the loss refers to losing the game. What happens to a girl who loses? “Not the blame” seems to imply not taking any blame, sexually abusing girls is not doing anything wrong, this is classic paedophile mantra. Ovenden, when convicted, was sure he had done nothing wrong.

(See also: Move The Spotlight, Centre for Exploiting Missing Children, A Very Private Crime, Normalising Paedophilia, The Homosexual Agenda, Psychopaths, Santa and the Snowmen, Offending Images )

Links…
http://www.themediablog.co.uk/the-media-blog/2011/08/a-level-results.html (The Badminton School email offering girls for photos)

http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/gallery/2012/mar/28/david-cameron-badminton-in-pictures?picture=387985879

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brotherhood_of_Ruralists
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/David_Inshaw
http://rwabristol.wordpress.com/2013/06/27/an-interview-with-david-inshaw-rwa/
http://www.tate.org.uk/art/artworks/inshaw-the-badminton-game-t03189/text-catalogue-entry
http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/robert-upstone/david-inshaw-in-coversati_b_1908853.html

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6 Responses to The Badminton Game

  1. Noonoo says:

    Perhaps artists have been getting away with unspeakable acts for a long time under the guise of ‘art’. It brings to mind parts of ‘The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie’. Apart from that, in our family we often think about the variety of things that are apparently ‘art’ and how a piece manages to be ‘art’ when someone (‘recognised’ as an artist, or as an ‘authority’ on art) says it’s art, but the same thing produced by different people under different circumstances isn’t art. Tracy Emin’s bed, for example, or an installation at the Tate St Ives a couple of years ago called ‘Half the air in an empty space’, which consisted of hundreds and hundreds of inflated white balloons in a room. Or some of Damien Hirst’s rather disquieting productions. Recently we saw a strange TV programme in which people were trying to sell pieces of ‘art’, some of which were beyond bizarre, including some canvases which were splattered with different coloured milkshakes which had been vomited (literally) on to them. Some years ago I took my daughter to the National Gallery in London and they were running an exhibition of Bridget Riley’s op art. We went in there last, and I can still remember my daughter’s face and her look of disappointment, after the Renaissance paintings we’d just been looking at. She said ‘I don’t think this is really art – we could do this at home on the computer’. Seeing it through her eyes like that, it was difficult to answer. I felt as if I was hearing the child in ‘The Emperor’s New Clothes’ saying what everyone else was thinking. I remember reading some time ago (and I don’t remember where, or who said it) that a lot of what is now called art is actually audacity, which I thought was an interesting perspective.

    • suliwebster says:

      Hi Noonoo, Lucky I check my spam comments, as your one got labelled spam, hence the delay in appearing.
      Yes I agree, the Art world is quite strange and is maybe covering up a lot. I don’t understand why some paintings are so pricey, and I think that’s a whole other area to look into. There is definitely Emperors New Clothes behaviour, well spotted. There are a lot of pompous and elite people in Art, but at the same time, creativity is very spiritually valuable. Those weird pieces you mention, it’s almost as if they are testing us to see how much we think for ourselves.

  2. George Silver says:

    My friend I used to play badminton at school during the lunch-break with the headmaster and the sports master. I didn’t realise I was having sex!

  3. suliwebster says:

    UPDATE… I have just visited the exhibition and noticed that Paul Elmsley’s painting is number 119 in the catalogue. 119 is English for 911, the 11th September. The listing is alphabetical, so they must have had to work carefully to make sure there were 118 pieces before him. Maybe that explains the mysterious selection process, and why works that are selected do not always get hung, I even know of one that was broken…

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