Wednesday, 27 June 2012

RA Summer Exhibition - Paintings etc

We had our annual expedition to the RA Summer exhibition on Friday (working round there being no buses due to industrial action) . Over the past few days I've been mulling over what has stuck in my mind and doing some research online on artists - mostly new.
There was a lot to enjoy especially among the large selection of smaller pieces on display in Room III  and the prints in Rooms I and II ( subject of another post). I liked a lot of the work in the 'landscape' room V chosen  by Barbara Rae  and her work, along with a couple of Sean Scully pieces in Room V.
Picking out my favourites, I suppose it is inevitable that  I'm drawn to those intepretations of subjects that I'm attempting to depict in my own work.
Trees are a current obsession - I'm not normally a huge fan of Tony Bevan(1)  but I love 'Untitled (tree No5 )', it's so full of character and vigorous marks.  Each year a painting by Anthony Whishaw (2) always seems to  figure in my top choices - this 'Light interior' has a lot of the qualities of crumbly textures I try to capture and with its subtle colour  is so atmospheric.
'The Wave'  by Fred Cuming (3), with its cloud shapes mirroring the wave  warrants further analysis for my seascapes. I'm glad to see I'm not the only one who sees purple in everything! 

These 3 are all by Royal Academicians but my  choice out of the whole exhibition was this small painting (4) of boats ( another obsession!) by Peter Beeson for its interesting composition and the unusual  rich green with touches of red and white. Also in Room V ,other painters of note new to me were Mary Canty and Neal Greig

After a few comments on CQ Yahoo Group about the lack of textiles in the Summer Exhibition, I kept a separate note of those works that included thread, fabric, wool etc and there seemed to be far more than  in previous year -18 in total  ( not that I've counted them before! ) .The selection of so many more small artworks probably helped although there were large pieces ,prominently hung: an embroidered drawing by Denise de Cordova  and the "Wearable Paintings"  of Lisa Milroy RA .Besides a piece by Miranda Argyle 'From where I'm  Looking' ( admired her work in previous years)  I wasn't  that struck by most of the textile pieces with  exception of  the painted embroidery 'Exterior'(5) of Nick Sargent ( more interesting work on his website) and the use of tiny stitched letters as marks in 'Holding myself together....' (6)by Effie Jessop

Ian's favourite was  a small piece ' Peg Tapestry'  by Annie Morris - I preferred  her large construction 'Peg Painting' (7)of pegs individually painted with figures.  Quirky but satisfying in its textures, and overall effect with splashes of colour and wonderful details.

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