The exhibition is over, the work either delivered to patrons or stacked in the garage. In the 12 days it was on 400 people came to see the show, and I sold a dozen pieces, including one of the large drawings. Biggest surprise of all was when my partner demanded that one of the large pieces, having picked out the guest room for it and two of the supporting drawings, and adding that the ‘Wave’ painting can hang on the living room wall too. They look good there too.
The gallery is unusual with at its heart the 13th century wine merchants ‘shop’, or at least the cellar ha used to deal his wines from. Looked after in part by English Heritage its flint rubble walls proved to make a fine background to my work. Unfortunately the gallery is frequently empty, and so doesn’t have a regular flow of visitors, but coverage in the local press helped bring in people and a talk I did on my work attracted an enthusiastic audience.
I was asked why I felt it necessary to show, but art is a language and language needs to be a two way street – a broadcaster and an audience – to have any meaning. I enjoyed being there for half the day most days and met some interesting people. In a retirement community like Seaford there are many who have an art and design background – the man who provided some of the Dan Dare work in the ‘Eagle’, a comic from my youth. An ex RCA fine art student there around the same time as Hockney and company. Art College tutors (retired) and many others who just enjoyed talking painting.
The show represented a year’s work and fulfilled another function in enabling me to look over the year and see the direction of the work, and what had been most successful. It has given me something to build on and the discussions and crits helped generate new insights for me into what I am doing. Unfortunately there has been a hiatus as another operation connected with the cancer keeps me out of the studio temporarily. Hopefully the results of tests coming through on the 18th May will show cancer in remission, but the surgeon was optimistic leaving me feeling like a weight had been lifted and I can see a future again.
I have a large landscape drawing on the go, and also a canvas which I hope to take the large drawings forward onto, formalising some of the techniques and experimenting with oil paint as opposed to pastels. I also see plenty of stimuli in the photos capturing spring colour, and a small series of drawings looking at that will also start to grow now. The agenda is set, and the challenge is to be fit enough to execute the planned work. As it progresses it will appear on here in the Gallery.
Enjoy. I hope to.
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