Saturday, 10 January 2009

Courtauld Gallery Discoveries

I've been visiting the Courtauld Gallery ever since I was a student in London in the early 1980's. Then, it was in Woburn Square (near University of London), and I loved to see all those famous impressionist paintings in the flesh! The gallery is now housed in the far grander setting of Somerset House and my tastes have changed over the years - I'm more likely to drool over the Fauves ( Matisse, Derain ,Vlaminck) although I'm still loyal to Cezanne, perhaps with a rather different appreciation than in my youth.What caught my eye on a recent visit was this painting, 'Bypass I' by Prunella Clough ( fascinating interactive archive here) It could be cells, a landscape, a map or an industrial view. The colour palette and shapes remind me a bit of Ian Mckeevers work too, with its many subtle layers and textures.

I went mainly to have a look at the current exhibtion of Turner watercolours - fascinated by the pioneering techniques he used. One new thing I learnt was how he applied broad washes of colour to the back of a painting which corresponded exactly with the principal elements on the front, so that when viewed with the light behind it , the colours and tones were greatly enhanced. I've been thinking since how I might use that principal in transparent pieces.

This weekend so far has been spent catching up with the washing and a bit of creative experimenting with the computer - Ian designing counters for a turn-based computer wargame he's devising from scratch and me printing out images using iron-on transfer techniques (more on that in another post). It's Ian's turn to make the dinner and I asked when he might be starting to cook. I didn't get the response I'd expected ( eg when the meat has marinated) but
"I've still got the Ukrainian Anarchists to do"!


Aussie Jo said...

Interesting painting.
I have just finished a book comparing Cezanne and Pissaro, who worked together often painting the same scene. It is interesting the similarities and differences.

margaret said...

The Prunella Clough exhibition at the Tate last year was interesting, did you see it? The Tate published a catalogue of the show.

judy stephens said...

Loved your experiments with Colour Catcher.
I am indulging in a book by Dale Chihuly called Chihuly 365 Days (price £19.95, not bad), allowing myself a page a day as an early morning treat. Don't know if it was around when Chihuly exhibited at Kew - think you might like it.