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Art

The flourishing of the artistic spirit

Last night I had dinner with a cultivated lawyer who is an aficionado of the art of the early Renaissance. He made the point that Masaccio, Brunoleschi, Ghiberti and Donatello flourished in a time of the Black Plague, internecine wars with other Republic City states and in the case of Donatello he [...]

December 2, 2014 // 0 Comments

The White Oak

Yesterday Polly and I decided to visit the Stanley Spencer Gallery and lunch at one of my favourites the White Oak. Grace left before breakfast. She  is the world’s unluckiest traveller and it was no surprise when she texted that all trains to Paddimgton were delayed. I will need to speak [...]

October 10, 2014 // 0 Comments

Popularity in the arts

In recent posts in the Rust,  popularity in the arts has been discussed in the context of Daphne du Maurier ‘s writing and Edward Seago. Popularity itself does not mean a writer or artist is second rate. Critics who often fail to make living from their art or writing are sometimes scathing [...]

September 20, 2014 // 0 Comments

Edward Seago

Edward Seago was a popular artist, led an interesting life and knew well circus performers as well as the Royal Family but sadly the biography by Jean Goodman does him little justice. It is billed as as a wider canvas drawing on the writings of his brother John a humane trapper of animals in Kenya. [...]

September 16, 2014 // 0 Comments

Jacques Emile Blanche

One of the interesting aspects of my work is to advise friends and clients on paintings. One friend buys through a well known gallery. It’s generally thought that this is an expensive way of building a collection. However it does have certain advantages in provenance and quality. You would be [...]

September 10, 2014 // 0 Comments

Edward Seago

As an art critic and historian, I sometimes am requested to advise on collectible artists and one I recommend is Edward Seago. Born in Norwich in 1910 as the son of a coal merchant, he was entirely self-educated. He had a heart condition, first diagnosed aged 7, which forced him to spend a great [...]

August 7, 2014 // 0 Comments

The Knebworth Festival

I chanced upon a report in the media earlier this week that the Knebworth Festival is celebrating its fortieth anniversary this year. I have vague memories of being there at various times in the 1970s to see Pink Floyd – who arranged for a Spitfire, or rather a replica version, to ‘fly’ on [...]

May 28, 2014 // 0 Comments

Michelangelo: His Epic Life / Martin Gayford

Martin Gayford is amongst the best of art biographers. I read both hisYellow House which depicts the time that Van Gogh and Gauguin spent in Arles and his life of John Constable and was impressed by both. His biography of Michelangelo did not scale the heights of these two as in it he was rather [...]

March 27, 2014 // 0 Comments

Richard Hamilton at the Tate Modern

There are some painters normally to be found in the Royal Academy that stay safely within their comfort zone knowing what their patrons like and producing it almost formulaically. Richard Hamilton could not  be accused of this as he was forever trying new styles and methods of painting. He has [...]

March 19, 2014 // 0 Comments

The Watts Gallery

The Watts gallery which I visited yesterday with Dominic, a collector of Victorian painting, houses the work of George Frederick Watts (1817-1904), one of the most celebrated artists of his day. Watts married first the actress Ellen Terry when she was just 16 and Mary Seton Fraser herself 42 years [...]

January 30, 2014 // 0 Comments

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