Colour: A Conversation with Steve Whittle (Beecroft Gallery, 27th June)

Colour - A Conversation

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Art History Mornings at The Beecroft (29th June 2019): The Camden Town Group

Art History Mornings at The Beecroft Gallery
Saturday 29th June, 10.30am-12.30pm
with Dr ML Banting

The Camden Town Group

Named after the area in north London in which Walter Sickert lived and painted, the Camden Town Group was formed in the wake of the Post-Impressionist Exhibition. As we’ll explore today, the Camden Town artists painted mainly urban and suburban scenes, exploring the modern world, everyday life, class and gender and often experimenting with brilliant colour.

Mrs Mounter at the Breakfast Table 1916-7 by Harold Gilman 1876-1919

Image: Harold Gilman – Mrs Mounter at the Breakfast Table (1916; Tate)

Meetings are held 10.30am – 12.30pm in the Beecroft Gallery lecture theatre.
Each talk costs £10 and includes tea/coffee (biscuits!)
For further information please contact Mark Banting by email chasingtales@rocketmail.com or via twitter @TheCommonViewer
These monthly Saturday morning art history talks are educational yet informal and open to anyone with an interest in art.

The Words and Pictures Book Club (10th June 2019): Imagined Lives

The Words & Pictures Book Club

“Imagined Lives”

including stories by John Banville, Tracy Chevalier & Joanna Trollope

Monday 10th June 2018, 2-4pm

Gleneagles Tea Rooms

Join us for the Words & Pictures book club where we will be reading and discussing novels in which visual art and artists are relevant to the narrative.

At our June meeting we’ll look at “Imagined Lives: Portraits of Unknown People” – a collection of fictional biographies based on several unidentified portraits in the National Portrait Gallery.

Imagined Lives

Words & Pictures meets monthly 2-4pm in the glorious surrounds of the Gleneagles Tea Rooms

Gleneagles Tea Rooms

– where there is tea and cake a-plenty!

All welcome but please email me to reserve your place: chasingtales@rocketmail.com

Gleneagles Guesthouse
5-6 Clifftown Parade
Southend-on-Sea, Essex SS1 1DP

The Words and Pictures Book Club (May 2019): Victoria Finlay’s “Colour”

The
Words & Pictures
Book Club

“Colour: Travels through the Paintbox” by Victoria Finlay

Monday 13th May 2018, 2-4pm
Gleneagles Tea Rooms

Join us for the Words & Pictures book club where we will be reading and discussing novels in which visual art and artists are relevant to the narrative.
At our May meeting we’ll look at Victoria Finlay’s “Colour”, a research travel-narrative discovering the meanings and uses of colours through the ages and across the world.

Finlay - Colour

Exciting, richly informative, and always surprising, ‘Colour’ lifts the lid on the historical palette and unearths an astonishing wealth of stories about the quest for colours, and our efforts to understand them.
Victoria Finlay’s “Colour” is published by Hodder & Stoughton, 2003.

Words & Pictures meets monthly 2-4pm in the glorious surrounds of the Gleneagles Tea Rooms
– where there is tea and cake a-plenty!

Gleneagles Tea Rooms

All welcome but please email me to reserve your place: chasingtales@rocketmail.com
Gleneagles Guesthouse
5-6 Clifftown Parade
Southend-on-Sea, Essex SS1 1DP

Art History Mornings at The Beecroft (May 2019): On or Around 1910, Post-Impressionism comes to Britain.

 

Art History Mornings at The Beecroft Gallery

Saturday 25th May 2019, 10.30am-12.30pm

with Dr ML Banting

 On or Around 1910:

Post-Impressionist Colour comes to Britain

Post-Impressionism 1910

Join us to discuss Roger Fry’s “Manet and the Post-Impressionists” exhibition, which caused such a furore in London, 1910.

The works of Vincent van Gogh, Paul Gauguin and others riled the critics who saw it as marking the end of civilisation.

Today we’ll look at the impact of Post-Impressionism among the artists of Bloomsbury and Camden Town within a broader cultural and political spectrum, in particular the women’s suffrage movement’s use of symbolic colour.

 

Meetings are held 10.30am – 12.30pm in the Beecroft Gallery lecture theatre.
Each talk costs £10 and includes tea/coffee (biscuits!)
For further information please contact Mark Banting by email chasingtales@rocketmail.com or via twitter @TheCommonViewer
These monthly Saturday morning art history talks are educational yet informal and open to anyone with an interest in art.

 

The Words & Pictures Book Club (April 2019): “Girl in Hyacinth Blue” by Susan Vreeland

The Words & Pictures Book Club

“Girl in Hyacinth Blue” by Susan Vreeland 

Monday 15th April, 2-4pm

Gleneagles Tea Rooms

Join us for the Words & Pictures book club where we will be reading and discussing novels in which visual art and artists are relevant to the narrative. At our April meeting we’ll discuss Susan Vreeland’s “Girl in Hyacinth Blue” and look at paintings by Dutch master artist Vermeer.

Words & Pictures meets monthly 2-4pm in the glorious surrounds of the Gleneagles Tea Rooms – where there is tea and cake a-plenty!

Gleneagles Tea Rooms

All welcome but please email me to reserve your place:

Dr ML Banting – chasingtales@rocketmail.com

Gleneagles Guesthouse
5-6 Clifftown Parade
Southend-on-Sea, Essex SS1 1DP

Art History Mornings at The Beecroft (April 2019): The Ballets Russes

Art History Mornings at The Beecroft Gallery
Saturday 27th April 2019, 10.30am-12.30pm
with Dr ML Banting
The Art of the Ballets Russes

Join us to discuss the story of Diaghilev’s Ballets Russes which caused such a stir in Paris and London with its modernist choreography, radical music and exotic costumes. The stories and stage-settings brought together numerous talented artists from Russia and across Europe, inspiring yet more artists in their exploration of Post-Impressionist painting. Today we’ll look again at these unique performances, assess their cultural impact and trace their influence on the visual arts.

Allinson - Russian Ballet

Adrian Paul Allinson (1890–1959): Tamara Karsavina (1885–1978) as the Firebird in ‘L’Oiseau de Feu’ (ballet by Michel Fokine)  [1918, Victoria and Albert Museum]

Meetings are held 10.30am – 12.30pm in the Beecroft Gallery lecture theatre.
Each talk costs £10 and includes tea/coffee (biscuits!)
For further information please contact Mark Banting by email chasingtales@rocketmail.com or via twitter @TheCommonViewer
These monthly Saturday morning art history talks are educational yet informal and open to anyone with an interest in art.

Southend-on-Sea Arts Council – Community Art Exhibition at The Beecroft, March 2019

SOSAC

It’s was such privilege to be asked to judge the entries in this year’s Community Art Exhibition, and the first thing I’d like to say is a massive thank you and congratulations to each and every one of the artists showing work – it’s a stunning exhibition.

Here are my notes, given as a ‘speech’ on awards night at The Beecroft Art Gallery on Friday 1st March 2019 (apologies for the not-very-good photographs!).

 

I don’t know if any of you have been to the Ruskin exhibition at Two Temple Place, but one of Ruskin’s quotes they use there is:

“All literature, art and science are in vain, and worse, if they do not enable you to be glad.”

Which I suspect doesn’t mean that all paintings should be of happy sunny uplands; but that art and craft should excite our senses, intrigue our minds, enliven our imaginations and send us out into the world, into our daily lives with new, invigorated ways of seeing.
And I have to say that the work in this exhibition definitely inspires; gladdening the eye and the heart.

Who cannot fail to look at Ann Henson’s “River” and not be immediately transported by those rich greens and blues that softly interweave with each other, illuminated by sunlight? Who doesn’t look again and again at Julie Parker’s “White Vase II” in absolute wonder at her extraordinary skill?

Or the way Therese Ellis dramatizes the effect of autumnal colours in the landscape? Then there’s Tracy Sutton’s “Sunny Garden” inviting you in to sit down there, forever in paradise; and Ian Deaves’ wonderful depiction of Rayleigh High St., Anita Pickles glorious “Anemones…

Colour is something that particularly gladdens me, so it’s no surprise that I am also utterly besotted by that lilac wall in Pauline Grove’s painting.

But I was only allowed two ‘highly commended’…

IMG_20190301_145139 (2)

 

The first goes to a most beautiful water-colour painting that is full of colour and texture and the patterns of shade and light; and it is full of temptation: I want to smell the flowers and I want to walk along that path into the garden beyond – it’s Susan Monk’s sublime painting of “Sissinghurst Garden”.

The second highly commended goes to such an extraordinary piece of work I don’t even know how to begin to describe it other than to say the maker’s IMG_20190301_141343

technical skill and artistic imagination leave me breathless; then, beyond even that, this is a work that is so full of fun that the more you look at the detail the more you smile with pure delight – this is Tanya Mimpress’s “Number 33”.

 

And so, to the 2019 prize-winner of the coveted Rose Bowl…

 

This goes to an artist to whose painting, as I walked around the exhibition, I kept returning; it became a sort of reference point for my ways of looking and what it is that gladdens me as a common viewer. Colour, as I’ve said, thrills me. Here it is layered and contrasted, suggestive and reflective, painted with skilled precision and – importantly – a visibly delighted passion. Also thrilling is its ‘sense of place’: the feeling that you’re looking at a scene right alongside the artist. Then there’s the texture – you know when your nerves go all jangly and you can’t decide whether you want to touch or lick or somehow get yourself inside a painting – grrrrrrr! All these things made this picture jump out for me. What made it the winner though? Well, ultimately it’s because as a viewer I can sense not only the passion of the artist, but the conviction, the confidence – that they know exactly how to look at what’s in front of them and with ultimate skill share their excitement of the scene as a painting that will gladden, intrigue and delight, that will enliven our imagination and send us out into the world and our everyday lives with a renewed sense of vision.

So it’s an honour to announce that the winner of the Rose Bowl is artist Sharon Henson for “Canal du Midi” – congratulations!

IMG_20190301_144928 (2)

The exhibition at The Beecroft Art Gallery runs until 2nd April 2019. For further information on SOSAC, the Southend-on-Sea Arts Council, please visit: http://www.sosac.co.uk/

 

Art History Mornings at The Beecroft (30th March 2019): The Scottish Colourists

Art History Mornings at The Beecroft Gallery
Saturday 30th March 2019, 10.30am-12.30pm
with Dr ML Banting

The Scottish Colourists

In the wake of Van Gogh and Gauguin’s post-impressionism, artists across Europe were exploring the power of colour in the first years of the 20th century, many heading for Paris, the city of light and capital of art. Today we’ll explore the Parisian adventures and glorious early paintings of those young student-artists who would become known as   The Scottish Colourists.

Fergusson - Blue Hat

image: JD Fergusson’s “The Blue Hat” [1909; Edinburgh Council c/o artuk.org]

Meetings are held 10.30am – 12.30pm in the Beecroft Gallery lecture theatre.
Each talk costs £10 and includes tea/coffee (biscuits!)
For further information please contact Mark Banting by email chasingtales@rocketmail.com or via twitter @TheCommonViewer
These monthly Saturday morning art history talks are educational yet informal and open to anyone with an interest in art.

The Words & Pictures Book Club (11th March 2019): “Never Anyone But You” by Rupert Thomson

The

Words & Pictures

Book Club

“Never Anyone But You” by Rupert Thomson

Monday 11th March, 2-4pm

Gleneagles Tea Rooms

Join us for the Words & Pictures book club where we will be reading and discussing novels in which visual art and artists are relevant to the narrative. At our March meeting we’ll look at Rupert Thomson’s “Never Anyone But You” and discuss the lives and art of Claude Cahun & Marcel Moore.

Rupert Thomson: Never Anyone But You (2018) is published by Corsair

Image: Claude Cahun: Self Portrait (c.1937 taken on Jersey; c/o Bridgeman Images)

Words & Pictures meets monthly 2-4pm in the glorious surrounds of the Gleneagles Tea Rooms

– where there is tea and cake a-plenty!

Gleneagles Tea Rooms

All welcome but please email me to reserve your place: chasingtales@rocketmail.com

Gleneagles Guesthouse
5-6 Clifftown Parade
Southend-on-Sea, Essex SS1 1DP