Monday, October 18, 2010
On Sunday evening Bedford Museum closed it's doors to the public for the last time in it's current layout. Now the big job of packing the precious collections commences so that it can all be moved out and the builders can get started. Bedford Gallery will still be open as usual but will have to close it's doors after the British Museum's touring Toulouse Lautrec exhibition has finished there in April.
We'll continue to blog and tweet about all the work that's going on behind the scenes - and believe me, a closed museum is still a very busy place to work! The curatorial team are already busy with the plans, as Tom Perret, Head of Collections and Exhibitons tweeted last week - "Starting the hard work of detailed design for the redevelopment of @chagandbm - difficult but very exciting" @tjperrett
The refurbished Art Gallery & Museum will be very much worth the wait and will open as one institution (which staff wise it has been since 2004) in late 2012-early 2013.
Friday, October 8, 2010
Richard Bawden 'A Splash in the Pant'.
‘As Bawden’s Executor I felt that helping the Cecil Higgins Art Gallery to raise the funds was probably one of the last concrete acts that I could do for his memory,’ says Peyton Skipwith. ‘By approaching many artists and dealers who admire his work and enrolling the help of Bloomsbury Auctions, we have been able to assemble the sixty works to be offered at auction. These range from original pieces by Bawden himself, including his initial design for the Bunyan Tapestry (est. £2500-3500), commissioned by the Cecil Higgins Art Gallery in the early 1970s, to works specially created for the sale.’ The former curator of the Cecil Higgins Art Gallery, Lady Halina Graham, has very kindly donated 'Campions and Columbine’ by Bawden, who had given and inscribed the lithograph to her.
For further information and illustrations please contact:
Vanessa Clewes Salmon Tel: 020 8458 3288 email: email@example.com
or Richard Caton Tel: 020 7495 9494 Ext 207 email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Bloomsbury Auctions 24 Maddox Street London W1S 1PP Tel: 0207 495 9494
Monday, October 4, 2010
watercolour and black lead on paper, 33.1 x 22.1 cm
Acession No. P.695
This is one of a series of about ten drawings Cotman made of the interior of Norwich Cathedral.
Painted c.1807, this shows the pillars on the northern side immediately west of the organ screen, seen from the centre of the nave. The tomb is that of Sir James Hobart, now almost hidden by pews.
The 1982-3 catalogue (see below) comments: ‘Nothing shows more clearly Cotman’s artistic power at this time than the way this rather ungainly corner of the Cathedral became the vehicle for one of the most poetic interior pieces he ever did’.EJ
PROVENANCE: Acquired from the artist by Rev. James Bulwer, then by descent; Walker’s Galleries Ltd.; 1926 bought by Sydney Kitson; Elisabeth and Alice Barbara Kitson, given to Gallery, May 1973.
EXHIBITIONS: John Sell Cotman (The Bulwer Collection), London, Walker’s Galleries Ltd., 1926, no.8; Oxford, Oxford Art Club, 1928, catalogue not traced; Twee Eeuwem Engelse Kunst, Amsterdam, Stedelijk Museum, 1936, no.181; Watercolour Drawings by J.R.Cozens and J.S.Cotman, Manchester, Whitworth Art Gallery, 1937, no.32; The English Tradition: an exhibition of watercolours from two private collections, Bedford, Cecil Higgins Art Gallery, 1972, no.18; John Sell Cotman, London, V&A, Manchester, Whitworth Art Gallery and Bristol, Bristol City Art Gallery, 1982-3, no.62
REFERENCES: S. Kitson, The Life of John Sell Cotman, 1937, p.107, pl.43; M. Pidgley, John Sell Cotman’s Patrons and The Romantic Subject Pictures in the 1820s and 1830s, 1975, p.79, no.252; L. Herrmann, Nineteenth Century British Painting, 2000, p.51. fig.36.
JAMES HOLLAND (1799-1870)
Edward the Confessor’s Chapel, Westminster Abbey, 1834
pencil and watercolour on paper, 26.3 x 17.5 cm, inscribed: J.Holland 1834
This drawing was formerly thought to depict Canterbury Cathedral.
This is a watercolour sketch for either the oil painting Part of St.Edward’s Chapel with the tombs of Edward III and his Queen Phillippa, exhibited at the Society of British Artists in 1835, or for another version, also an oil, exhibited at the British Institution in 1835 entitled St.Edward’s Chapel, Westminster Abbey.
Rebuilt by Edward the Confessor c.1050-65, Westminster Abbey is the earliest example of the Norman Style in England. The Confessor’s shrine was commissioned by Henry III before he began the new abbey in 1241.EJ/CB
PROVENANCE: W.G. Walford; P&D Colnaghi Ltd, from whom purchased by Gallery, July 1960.
EXHIBITIONS: James Holland Bi-Centennial Exhibition, Stoke-on-Trent, The Potteries Museum and Art Gallery, 1999, no cat.