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Say hello to Rodney

Peter Wollen: How art becomes kitsch, 17 February 2000

The Artificial Kingdom: A Treasury of the Kitsch Experience 
by Celeste Olalquiaga.
Bloomsbury, 321 pp., £20, November 1999, 0 7475 4535 9
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... The hero of Celeste Olalquiaga’s book is a hermit crab encased in a glass globe which she has chosen to christen ‘Rodney’. She first encountered Rodney, as she recounts, in a San Francisco bed and breakfast, a Victorian mansion in which every room had been named after a supposed turn-of-the-century guest – Isadora Duncan, Enrico Caruso, Luisa Tetrazzini – and decorated in an appropriate style ...

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