Wednesday 9 November 2016

Drawing Tuesday at the Queens House

  Drawing Tuesday this week was at the National Maritime  Museum, Greenwich  but as the Queens House had only just reopened after a lengthy refurbishment I  stopped off  for a quick look around. Only there was so much to see  in the end I only had about half an hours drawing in the museum itself.
Besides the portraits and pictures of battleships at sea there were some contemporary  work on display alongside older  pieces.
  My favourites were the panel of tiles hung opposite each other : the panel of old Delft tiles  showing whaling opposite 'Sea Marks' by Tania Kovats.  Her inspiring book 'Drawing Water'  shows variations of this done in ink. 
  To get to the galleries you have to climb the gorgeous 'Tulip Staircase'

  Besides paintings, they had some quirkier old artworks like the woolwork embroidered pictures ( don't you love those skies!) and the Working Mens Educational posters of the stars from 1850's printed on cotton ( they could be easily  rolled and hung up in different venues)  
 Another fabric wall hanging was this fantastic  huge screenprinted  commemoration of the Glasgow shipyards by Alexander Hardie Williamson. I'd never heard of him - apparently he's best known for designing Ravenhead glassware.  The subject matter also had resonance for me - my grandfather was a pattern-maker there ( he was involved with the refit of Queen Mary)  and my dad an apprentice , going to evening classes to get a HND in engineering.  
Scattered around several rooms were the paintings of Herbert Barnard John  Everett who apparently has the largest number of paintings in public collections of any artist!  Definitely worth finding out more about - I loved his stylised designs and colour

  He was particularly known for recording the 'dazzle' designs on ships

But enough of looking at paintings , I was determined to  do at least some drawing, attempting from a dark corner to draw this 'Scare devil' from the Nicobar Islands . Difficult foreshortening and poor lighting  means he looks more like  Noddy  than a power figure

 A long train ride home ( we were stuck for half an hour  outside Dartford due to signaling problems) had me  doodling in my handbag sketchbook with a biro, I'd been reminded by   Janet's drawings how versatile  drawing instrument it is.

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