Tuesday, 4 November 2008

Lucian in London

Lucian Freud Girl in Dark Jacket

I'm just back from London and full of plans for our exhibition programme in 2009. I had a really enjoyable time meeting artists and seeing lots of different parts of London. I can't say too much now but exciting times lie ahead for the gallery. Plans include a major Print makers exhibition in the Spring and the fabulous work of a sculptor who casts in bronze, which will be available in the gallery in August 2009.

I was lucky enough to take in quite a few exhibitions and if you are in London with time to visit some galleries I can highly recommend the early Lucian Freud works at Hazlitt Holland-Hibbert in St James's. The exhibition is full of gems. I found it incredibly inspiring, his work is full of rare integrity and the keenest observation. The little Oil of lemons is the most delicious painting of lemons I have ever seen!

What Are You Like? at Dulwich Picture Gallery is a small collection of drawings by some famous and not so famous people in the public eye. Looking at the untitled pictures and guessing the artists is the name of the game. It's incredibly good fun. I'm always fascinated by people's favourite things and this is very revealing of the various personalities involved. Everything from favourite clothes, animals, weather and comforts are depicted - the perfect exhibition for a nosey person!

The Flemming Collection
has a brilliant collection of Joan Eardleys on show now. If you missed the huge retrospective of her work at the RSA in Edinburgh at the end of 2007 this is a great chance to see some of her best work. She's probably one of my favourite artists of all time.

ROTHKO Red on Maroon

Before catching the train my last stop was Tate Modern to see the later work of Rothko. I viewed the paintings with an audio tour headset and enjoyed hearing the music that inspired him and some of the background and history to his commissions and the methods and media in which he worked. The work is at its best hung in a vast space, so that it dominates the environment. I felt the power of it and went away with a little more insight into the man.

I will have to make a return visit to see Byzantium at the Royal Academy it looks like an extraordinary collection.


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