Above and Below!

Michael Benson – Atmospheres, Flowers Gallery, 21 Cork Street, London W1, until 3rd December 2016

Earth over the Lunar Horizon, Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter, 12 October, 2015, 2016 Digital C-print. 98 x 72 in / 249 x 183 cm (c) NASA/GSFC/LROC/Michael Benson, Kinetikon Pictures. Courtesy of Flowers Gallery.

Earth over the Lunar Horizon, Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter, 12 October, 2015, 2016
Digital C-print. 98 x 72 in / 249 x 183 cm
(c) NASA/GSFC/LROC/Michael Benson, Kinetikon Pictures. Courtesy of Flowers Gallery.

In this his first solo exhibition with the gallery Michael Benson has created large-format landscape photographs depicting planets, their moons and the Sun.  He uses fragments of raw image data garnered from robotic interplanetary missions to create these intriguing images. They really should be seen.

Sunset on Mars, Spirit Rover, May 19, 2005, 2012 Digital c-print. 20 1/2 x 26 1/2 in / 517 x 667 cm (c) NASA JPL/Michael Benson, Kinetikon Pictures. Courtesy of Flowers Gallery.

Sunset on Mars, Spirit Rover, May 19, 2005, 2012
Digital c-print. 20 1/2 x 26 1/2 in / 517 x 667 cm
(c) NASA JPL/Michael Benson, Kinetikon Pictures. Courtesy of Flowers Gallery.

http://www.flowersgallery.com

 

Norman Ackroyd – Just Be A Poet, The Fine Art Society, 148 New Bond Street London W1, until 30th November 2016

Norman Ackroyd RA Holbeck - Leeds, 1991, Courtesy of The Fine Art Society

Norman Ackroyd RA
Holbeck – Leeds, 1991,
Courtesy of The Fine Art Society

This is a celebration of the British landscape by Norman Ackroyd RA through watercolours and prints dating from between 1978 and 2012.  It is a detailed vision to which the artist has been faithful for six decades and is one that engrosses the viewer. Like the landscapes they depict they deserve re-visiting time and again

Norman Ackroyd RA Hardraw Force, North Yorkshire, 2005 Courtesy of The Fine Art Society

Norman Ackroyd RA
Hardraw Force, North Yorkshire, 2005
Courtesy of The Fine Art Society

thefineartsociety.com

 

Finally – Just a brief mention about Charles Mackesy’s whimsical painted sculptures at Sladmore Contemporary (until 25th November http://www.sladmorecontemporary.com/). He has transformed found objects into sculptural works of art.  Great fun as these doors clearly illustrate.  Many of the cartoons depicted on it were produced by the artist when he was cartoonist for The Spectator magazine.

The Loo Door Oil on Wooden Door 78" x 27" Charlie Mackesy

The Loo Door
Oil on Wooden Door
78″ x 27″
Charlie Mackesy

 

BOOK REVIEW: Great Houses, Modern Aristocrats

Great Houses, Modern Aristocrats

Written by James Reginato, Foreword by Viscount Linley, Photographed by Jonathan Becker
Publisher: Rizzoli
£40.00
ISBN: 978-0-8478-4898-0

greathousesmodernaristocrats_cover

The doors of some of the beautiful great homes of the UK and Ireland are opened in this book which celebrates both their history and the lives of the present day occupiers.  It celebrates great houses such as Blenheim Palace, Broughton Castle, Haddon Hall and smaller ones such as the Old Vicarage in Edensor which was the final home of the late Dowager Duchess of Devonshire.  We even visit the late 3rd Baron Glenconner’s homes on Mustique and St. Lucia and the Earl of Durham in Tuscany. The book is beautifully illustrated with some interiors revealed for the first time.  An absolute must have for those interested in history, interior design and people.

 

http://www.rizzoliusa.com

 

A New Acquisition!

Three Centuries of English Freemasonry Gallery,  The Library & Museum of Freemasonry, Freemasons’ Hall, 60 Great Queen Street, London WC2

George, Prince of Wales (later George IV) on throne Courtesy of The Library & Museum of Freemasonry

George, Prince of Wales (later George IV) on throne
Courtesy of The Library & Museum of Freemasonry

This new exhibition gallery was recently opened at the end of September by the current Grand Master, HRH The Duke of Kent.  The Library were alerted by an article in the 5th November 2016 issue of the Antiques Trade Gazette to this rare Chinese reverse glass painting depicting the future George IV when Prince of Wales.  Based on an engraving by Edmund Scott, it shows the Prince in the ceremonial chair which had been commissioned in 1791 to mark their first royal Grand Master.

George, Prince of Wales (later George IV) on throne Courtesy of The Library & Museum of Freemasonry

George, Prince of Wales (later George IV) on throne
Courtesy of The Library & Museum of Freemasonry

As these images show they successfully acquired it in the sale at Historical and Collectable auctioneers on November 5th.

Andrew Tucker with Chinese reverse glass painting in front of George, Prince of Wales' ceremonial chair in Three Centuries of English Freemasonry Gallery Courtesy of The Library & Museum of Freemasonry

Andrew Tucker with Chinese reverse glass painting in front of George, Prince of Wales’ ceremonial chair in Three Centuries of English Freemasonry Gallery
Courtesy of The Library & Museum of Freemasonry

http://www.freemasonry.london.museum

BOOK REVIEW: London Uncovered

London Uncovered: Sixty Unusual Places to Explore

Mark Daly (Author), Peter Dazeley (Photographer)
Publisher: Frances Lincoln
£30.00
ISBN9780711238091

 london-uncovered_cover

 This is a book for anyone who loves London as it takes us into sixty buildings and places which we may recognise but are probably ones that we may not have visited so far. Dazeley’s photography reveals the interiors of these intriguing spaces while Daley’s text gives the history and feel of the place.  A great combination and thanks to this book I now have many places to visit in the coming months and years which I feel sure I will want to return to.

 

The book’s sections are Historical Homes, Food and Drink, Palaces of Entertainment, Places of Worship, Remarkable Shops, Science and Education, Inns of Court and Unusual Museums.  What more could you ask for?

 

www.franceslincoln.com

Connecting Boundaries

Africa My Africa – Connecting Boundaries, Gallery of African Art (GAFRA), 45 Albemarle Street, London W1, until 3rd December 2016

Left-right top: Daniel Soresa (Memories, 2015) and Patrick Altes (Il Faut Cultiver Son Jardin, 2014). Bottom: Edward Akourt (Sometimes I Wonder, 2015) and Olayanju Dada (My beautiful Nightmare, 2016). Courtesy of the Gallery of African Art and Lahd Gallery

Left-right top: Daniel Soresa (Memories, 2015) and Patrick Altes (Il Faut Cultiver Son Jardin, 2014). Bottom: Edward Akourt (Sometimes I Wonder, 2015) and Olayanju Dada (My beautiful Nightmare, 2016).
Courtesy of the Gallery of African Art and Lahd Gallery

This is a joint exhibition between GAFRA and the Lahd Gallery, London and celebrates the work of four artists – Daniel Soresa (Ethiopia), Patrick Altes (Algeria), Olayanju Dada (Nigeria) and Edward Akrout (Tunisia). Although coming from very different backgrounds there is a unity in the works as each artist is telling the story of “their” Africa in these vibrant, colourful works.

Africa My Africa - Connecting Boundaries Courtesy of the Gallery of African Art and Lahd Gallery

Africa My Africa – Connecting Boundaries
Courtesy of the Gallery of African Art and Lahd Gallery

www.gafraart.com

www.lahdgallery.com  

Chagall and Dufy

La régate à Henley, 1930-35 Signed lower left 'Raoul Dufy' Oil on canvas 25 3/8 x 31 7/8 in, 64.6 x 81 cm Courtesy Connaught Brown, London.

La régate à Henley, 1930-35
Signed lower left ‘Raoul Dufy’
Oil on canvas
25 3/8 x 31 7/8 in, 64.6 x 81 cm
Courtesy Connaught Brown, London.

The exhibition Raoul Dufy: A Spectacle of Society at Connaught Brown (until 25th November 2016, www.connaughtbrown.co.uk) brings to our attention his skill in depicting society of the interwar period and how he concentrates on people as a group rather than individually thus creating a sense of joie-de-vivre that encapsulates the era perfectly.

La fenêtre, 1923 Signed lower right 'Raoul Dufy' Oil on canvas 36 1/4 x 28 3/4 in, 92 x 73 cm Courtesy Connaught Brown, London.

La fenêtre, 1923
Signed lower right ‘Raoul Dufy’
Oil on canvas
36 1/4 x 28 3/4 in, 92 x 73 cm
Courtesy Connaught Brown, London.

 

Marc Chagall (1887-1985) Les trois acrobates c.1913-14 gouache and watercolour on paper 39.4 x 31.8 cm (15½ x 12½ in.) signed ‘Chagall’ (lower right) Courtesy of Alon Zakaim Fine Art

Marc Chagall (1887-1985)
Les trois acrobates
c.1913-14
gouache and watercolour on paper
39.4 x 31.8 cm (15½ x 12½ in.)
signed ‘Chagall’ (lower right)
Courtesy of Alon Zakaim Fine Art

At Alon Zakaim Fine Art you will discover Marc Chagall “Fables” (until 23rd December 2016, www.alonzakaim.com) which shows through paintings spanning over five decades how he used recurrent themes and motifs in original and eye-catching ways which still remain fresh and engrossing to this day.

Marc Chagall (1887-1985) Soleil au cheval rouge 1977 oil on canvas 88.9 x 116.2 cm (35 x 45¾ in.) signed and dated ‘Marc Chagall 1977’ (lower left); signed ‘Marc Chagall’ (on the verso) Courtesy of Alon Zakaim Fine Art

Marc Chagall (1887-1985)
Soleil au cheval rouge
1977
oil on canvas
88.9 x 116.2 cm (35 x 45¾ in.)
signed and dated ‘Marc Chagall 1977’ (lower left); signed ‘Marc Chagall’ (on the verso)
Courtesy of Alon Zakaim Fine Art

Andy Warhol

Andy Warhol, Haynes Fine Art London, 70 Pimlico Road, London SW1, until 7th December 2016

ANDY WARHOL American 1928-1987 (ref. 13738) 'Abstract Drawing' Tempera on paper, signed verso, drawn circa 1954 Paper size: 13.25 x 15 inches

ANDY WARHOL
American 1928-1987
(ref. 13738)
‘Abstract Drawing’
Tempera on paper, signed verso, drawn circa 1954
Paper size: 13.25 x 15 inches

What better way to open a new gallery in London than with an exhibition of twenty-seven original works by Andy Warhol?  Well this is exactly what well-known Haynes Fine Art has done with their exciting gallery space in Pimlico Road where they show early drawings, Polaroid’s and gelatin silver photographs.

ANDY WARHOL American 1928-1987 (ref. 13731) 'Debbie Harry' Unique gelatin silver print, dated 'Oct 27 1980' verso Paper size: 10 x 8 inches

ANDY WARHOL
American 1928-1987
(ref. 13731)
‘Debbie Harry’
Unique gelatin silver print, dated ‘Oct 27 1980’ verso
Paper size: 10 x 8 inches

Their managing director Tony Haynes says: “We are excited to have secured this remarkable selection of works by Warhol. They offer a unique opportunity to acquire a piece of Pop Art history by one of the world’s most famous artists.  These are fantastic entry-level works for new collectors and rare one-off pieces for seasoned buyers. ”

ANDY WARHOL American 1928-1987 (ref.13883) 'Reducing Salon' Graphite on coloured paper, drawn circa 1979 Paper size: 18 x 20 inches

ANDY WARHOL
American 1928-1987
(ref.13883)
‘Reducing Salon’
Graphite on coloured paper, drawn circa 1979
Paper size: 18 x 20 inches

The opening of the new Haynes Fine Art gallery in Pimlico Road is a major step as we celebrate 45 years of our business this year, and the arrival of a 3rd generation to the Haynes family team.  It is a deep commitment not only to our international customers but also to our belief that London is the most important and vibrant art centre in the world.”

Haynes Fine Art London Gallery

Haynes Fine Art London Gallery

www.haynesfineart.com 

WWII WAR PICTURES

WWII War Pictures by British Artists, Morley Gallery, Morley College, 62 Westminster Bridge Road, London, SE1, until 23rd November 2016

James Hammond Harwood (1904-1980) Barrage Balloon, 1940 Framed (ref: 7674) Signed and dated Watercolour 14 ¼ x 17 ¼ in. (36 x 44 cm)

James Hammond Harwood (1904-1980)
Barrage Balloon, 1940
Framed (ref: 7674)
Signed and dated
Watercolour
14 ¼ x 17 ¼ in. (36 x 44 cm)

It is appropriate that Liss Llewellyn Fine Art should hold this exhibition at the Morley Gallery for the College had some very beautiful British murals which were destroyed in the Blitz during the Second World War.

Mary Adshead (1904 - 1995) Farmers ploughing, Study for The World's Food mural, c. 1942 Framed (ref: 5282) Signed, squared in pencil Watercolour over pencil 4 3/8 x 7 1/2 in. (12.2 x 19 cm)

Mary Adshead (1904 – 1995)
Farmers ploughing, Study for The World’s Food mural, c. 1942
Framed (ref: 5282)
Signed, squared in pencil
Watercolour over pencil
4 3/8 x 7 1/2 in. (12.2 x 19 cm)

In 1939 the Ministry of Information set up the War Artists Advisory Committee (WAAC) under the chairmanship of Kenneth Clark who was the National Gallery’s Director and the WAAC were asked to ‘draw up a list of artists qualified to record the war at home and abroad’. In the end some four hundred and three artists were commissioned to record all aspects of the War.

Hubert Arthur Finney (1905-1991) Self portrait, 1945 Framed (ref: 7654) Pastel, 17 5/8 x 14 1/8 in. (45 x 36 cm)

Hubert Arthur Finney (1905-1991)
Self portrait, 1945
Framed (ref: 7654)
Pastel,
17 5/8 x 14 1/8 in. (45 x 36 cm)

An eight volume series of pocket-sized pamphlets – War Pictures by British Artists – was published in two sets of four in 1942 (War at Sea, RAF, Army, and Blitz ) and 1943 (Soldiers, Production, Air Raids and Women) to great success despite the poor quality of the printing.  This exhibition includes many of these WAAC artworks as well as those produced by other artists and illustrators who were working privately.

Ethel Leontine Gabain (1883-1950) Captain Pauline Gower of the Women’s Air Transport Auxiliary Framed (ref: 7607) Lithographic print from the series Women’s Work in the War (Other than the Services), published by The Ministry of Information: His Majesty’s Stationery Office 14 7/8 x 19 3/4 in. (37.8 x 50.2 cm.) Reference: Wright supplement 314

Ethel Leontine Gabain (1883-1950)
Captain Pauline Gower of the Women’s Air Transport Auxiliary
Framed (ref: 7607)
Lithographic print from the series Women’s Work in the War (Other than the Services), published by The Ministry of Information: His Majesty’s Stationery Office
14 7/8 x 19 3/4 in. (37.8 x 50.2 cm.)
Reference: Wright supplement 314

The combination of these works provides us with an exhibition that embraces all aspects of the War and brings the period to life before our eyes.  It reminds us of the debt we owe those people in the forces and at home who did their bit unflinchingly. The exhibition is accompanied by an excellent catalogue.

James Walker Tucker ((1898-1972)) Letters from Home Framed (ref: 7671) Signed Watercolour on paper 14 ¼ x 20 ½ in. (36 x 52 cm)

James Walker Tucker ((1898-1972))
Letters from Home
Framed (ref: 7671)
Signed
Watercolour on paper
14 ¼ x 20 ½ in. (36 x 52 cm)

http://www.llfa.gallery

James Woodford (1893–1976) Dawn Chorus, 1946-7 Unframed (ref: 7581) Original plaster maquette, with a dark green finish, signed and dated 1946-7, and (titled on a label) 17 x 16 ins. (43 x 40.5 cm)

James Woodford (1893–1976)
Dawn Chorus, 1946-7
Unframed (ref: 7581)
Original plaster maquette, with a dark green finish, signed and dated 1946-7, and (titled on a label)
17 x 16 ins. (43 x 40.5 cm)

South London Gallery and Meissen

Ian Davenport Plate 2 (c) Meissen

Ian Davenport Plate 2
(c) Meissen

The South London Gallery’s wide-ranging education work in support of children and young people within the local area is supported by the SLG Council. The Council is a group of art philanthropists and each year the members receive a limited-edition plate (edition of 26 unique plates) which is specially created at the world-famous Meissen factory.  The plates’ decoration this year has been done by the 1991 Turner Prize nominee Ian Davenport and reflects his bold abstract use of colour and unconventional painting process.

He said of the project:  “Earlier this year I spent a week in Meissen factory doing a research trip and making some prototypes for the project at South London Gallery. It was an incredible experience, learning about porcelain manufacture and the history of its development over the last 300 years. The factory is a treasure trove of different techniques, approaches and objects of this wonderful material. In collaboration with the art studio at the factory I began trying to find a way of making the glazes and colour work, pouring the liquid colours. It took a while and some raised eyebrows, but eventually we began to see the results. Making something of this kind, under time pressure and unsure of the process takes an act of faith from all parties but the positive outlook with which Meissen embraced this project, made it very enjoyable.

Ian Davenport (c) Meissen

Ian Davenport
(c) Meissen

Meissen  are also proud of this connection and sum it up saying: “The value of supporting emerging talent and allowing their creativity to express itself, has been a subject at the core of Meissen since the start of the company, some 300 years ago. We are very proud to be supporting the South London Gallery’s education programmes, we feel this is an important initiative which will benefit the artists of tomorrow.”

 

http://www.southlondongallery.org

David Bowie – a Collector

Bowie/Collector,

Sotheby’s, 34-35 New Bond Street, London W1, 
Exhibition open 1–10 November 2016
Auctions 10 & 11 November 2016
'Bowie/Collector' (Photo by Tim P. Whitby/Tim Whitby/ Getty Images for Sotheby's)

‘Bowie/Collector’
(Photo by Tim P. Whitby/Tim Whitby/ Getty Images for Sotheby’s)

Wow! Such a simple word sums up my first and lasting impression of these pieces being auctioned from Bowie’s personal art collection.  Personal is the key word in describing everything because they were his choice – he responded at some level to each of these works whether they were 20th Century British Masters, Contemporary African Art or examples of German Expressionism.  Scottish artists and Contemporary artists feature too, including the spin painting created jointly with Damien Hirst. There is even a Tintoretto.

Damien Hirst with David Bowie, Beautiful, hallo, space-boy painting, 1995 (£250,000-350,000) (Photo by Tim P. Whitby/Tim Whitby/ Getty Images for Sotheby's)

Damien Hirst with David Bowie, Beautiful, hallo, space-boy painting, 1995 (£250,000-350,000)
(Photo by Tim P. Whitby/Tim Whitby/ Getty Images for Sotheby’s)

Then there is the large group of Memphis Milano pieces whose designs perfectly resounded with Bowie. Colour, even if minimal, certainly appears to be a unifying factor across the whole collection.  He said that he was attracted to “those who transgressed the norm, who defied convention, whether in painting or in music or anything”. This is certainly obvious and it underlines perfectly the fact that he was a serious and knowledgeable collector and that his taste like his music is both thought-provoking and highly enjoyable.

Achille and Pier Giacomo Castiglioni, Radio-Phonograph, Model no. RR126, designed 1966 (£800-1,200) (Photo by Tim P. Whitby/Tim Whitby/ Getty Images for Sotheby's)

Achille and Pier Giacomo Castiglioni, Radio-Phonograph, Model no. RR126, designed 1966 (£800-1,200)
(Photo by Tim P. Whitby/Tim Whitby/ Getty Images for Sotheby’s)

 

Norman Catherine, Fanagalo Store (Est. £10,000-15,000) (Photo by Tim P. Whitby/Tim Whitby/ Getty Images for Sotheby's)

Norman Catherine, Fanagalo Store (Est. £10,000-15,000)
(Photo by Tim P. Whitby/Tim Whitby/ Getty Images for Sotheby’s)

 

Winifred Nicholson, St Ives Harbour (£50,000-70,000) + Bernard Leach, Vase with 'Leaping Fish' Design (£5,000-7,000) (Photo by Tim P. Whitby/Tim Whitby/ Getty Images for Sotheby's)

Winifred Nicholson, St Ives Harbour (£50,000-70,000) + Bernard Leach, Vase with ‘Leaping Fish’ Design (£5,000-7,000)
(Photo by Tim P. Whitby/Tim Whitby/ Getty Images for Sotheby’s)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Jean-Michel Basquiat, Air Power, 1984 (£2.5-3.5million) (Photo by Tim P. Whitby/Tim Whitby/ Getty Images for Sotheby's)

Jean-Michel Basquiat, Air Power, 1984 (£2.5-3.5million)
(Photo by Tim P. Whitby/Tim Whitby/ Getty Images for Sotheby’s)

 

 

sothebys.com/bowiecollector