Maybe it’s the non-stop disturbing news from around the world, or the long dark winter and the recent wild storms (including Storm Eunice which carried a Red Alert warning) but I just haven’t been feeling the love. The year has felt slow in getting started.
This week I visited a new exhibition at The Arc in the historic city of Winchester, to explore the work of Eric Ravilious. It is the first time I have experienced Ravilious’ work up close. A display of stunning woven textiles by weaver, Deirdre Wood outside The Gallery was an added bonus. The intensity of colourful art proved inspirational and I’m back at my laptop with the first blog in a few weeks.
Continue reading “Review. Extraordinary Everyday: The Art & Design of Eric Ravilious and Turn and Return by Dierdre Wood”
What did Paul Joyce, filmmaker, writer, photographer and painter, make of Jane Fonda? Why did Joyce and David Hockney fall out? And which of his photographs did Sophia Loren choose as a personal gift?
Paul Joyce (credits include director and producer of four series of Dr Who, 1981) spent his childhood in Winchester so it seems entirely fitting that a city gallery is hosting an exhibition celebrating his life and work, now in his 80th year. Paul Joyce: A Life Behind the Lens features a selection of well-known faces, as well as photographic landscape works and paintings from the past five decades. Many images are accompanied by some blunt commentary from Joyce.
Continue reading “Review. Paul Joyce: A Life Behind The Lens”
A stunning new display of over 12 works by Frans Hals, one of the greatest masters of the Dutch Golden Age, offers a unique perspective on 17th century masculinity and sense of style. In a breakaway from the male gaze upon the female form, Hals fixes his painterly eye upon his male contemporaries. The portraits are displayed against a dark background, with subtle gallery lighting except for spotlights on each painting. It is a sexy, elegant and theatrical setting, and I fell in love with every single one.
Continue reading “Review. Frans Hals: The Male Portrait at the Wallace Museum”
Temperatures have dropped in the UK this week and after what seemed like endless days of autumn sunshine we now have heavy rain. From now until around March bracing country walks, warming hot soups and evenings on the sofa watching great classic films are the general rule, including an annual rerun of Le Carré’s Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy (BBC, 1979) with the much-missed Alec Guinness.
Continue reading “This week… tigers, skulls and a Del Boy moment”
Every September heritage houses, museums and other buildings throw open their doors to the public. Entry and tours are free despite the work of many of these organisations being independently funded, so a donation is welcome. The nationwide Heritage Open Days festival closes today and I took the opportunity take a peek behind the scenes over the nine-day event in Winchester. Here’s what I discovered.
Continue reading “This week… chimney tops, ration books and guardian angels”
A new exhibition opens today at Waddesdon Manor featuring 35 exotic watercolours seen in public for the first time in over one hundred years. The works were created by Gustave Moreau, one of the most influential artists of the French Symbolist movement, between 1879 and 1885.
Continue reading “Gustave Moreau: The Fables at Waddesdon Manor”
In the words of Bill Cunningham “Fashion is the armour to survive the reality of everyday life”. Fashion is life-enhancing and this summer museums and galleries are offering an exciting programme of stylish exhibitions, a visual feast to revive our hopes and our dreams.
Continue reading “Fashion and textiles: must-see exhibitions”
This week the government announced plans to cut funding for arts education by as much as 50%. Ironically, this month museums and galleries (and other indoor venues) will be able to reopen from lockdown. I’m keen to support as many as art venues as possible but there’s no room here to include every one, so from an inbox choc-full of press releases on new exhibitions and events here’s my top openings in May.
Continue reading “Gallery and Museum Reopenings: Summer’s Top Exhibitions”
Over his career Pop Art artist, Heiner Meyer, has captured the 20th century and the beginning of the 21st century consumer culture through images of cinema, fashion, TV, luxury cars and elite sports. Meyer’s sculptures and paintings often focus on the feminine beauty culture, employing bright colors his work often satirises well-known and celebrity subjects.
Continue reading “Review: High Gloss”
This week it’s hard to ignore the elephant in the room with the first anniversary of COVID-19 having crept up on us. Incredibly, in a time when humanity has effectively and collectively lost a year, public celebrations have paled into the background. Nonetheless, in any given year there are more anniversaries than you can shake a stick at, so here’s a round-up for 2021.
Continue reading “This week.. anniversaries”