A trip back into London following a meeting in Canary Wharf, plus the need to get a handful of cheap CDRs can mean only one thing: a visit to Whitechapel. And a visit to Whitechapel in the daytime can only mean a visit to The Whitechapel. Whose new show is by a fellow by the name of Franz West.

I shall pass swiftly over Mr. West’s painterly output because it seems to rely very heavily on crudely executed ‘shocking’ subjects which mostly amount to scenes of a variously sexual nature (and if that’s what you’re after run run run down to One In The Other where Liz Neal’s show will do the job rather better for you’ Kultureflash describes it as ‘a baroque poor-geois playpen complete with (literally) dripping chandelier’. Which is true but doesn’t give much of a sense of how engaging and unpleasant an experience it is).

I recall a friend of mine complaining about the studious atmosphere of many art galleries. Franz West plainly agrees, because the point of the body of this show is to encourage you to goof around with your friends. He provides sculptural objects intended for you to play with, though visions of horrible Whose Line Is It Anyway-style improvisations come to mind when you see that he’s curtained off a section of the gallery for you and your friends to mess about without the interference of prying eyes. There’s also a piece in which a thin sheet of reflective, semi-transparent material separates two chairs. I saw a couple playing on it (I didn’t make a note of its name, I’m sorry), they were watching each other watching themselves. It was the most romantic thing I’ve seen in years.

I, on the other hand, was on my own and on my way back to the office from a meeting. I grumbled to myself about the whole thing being not much to look at and shuffled back out onto Whitechapel Road, where people seem to be messing about perfectly happily without any additional help.