Sunday, 23 June 2013

Tulips in a Pottery Vase, 1912

Tulips - The Blue Jug, 1919
I got up painfully early on Friday morning, meaning to be standing on the doorstep when the gallery opened ... and I was only 20 minutes behind schedule, which is pretty good for me. I'd been hoping for months for an excuse to visit Edinburgh in time to catch this lovely Peploe exhibition, which was the second in their Scottish Colourist series (JD Fergusson coming up next), but I was cutting it fine as it closes this weekend.
What a treat to see so many Peploes all at once. (This was the first major exhibition for 30 years.)  It was fascinating to see how the French influence in his work developed, how he dallied with Manet, then van Gogh, took some ideas from Pissarro, then embraced Cézanne ... you could feel the buzz of all these ideas and colours spilling out of the paintings.
And I loved how his tulips went from van Gogh impasto (look at that sunflower yellow background) to such sinuous elegance that they seem to be dancing across the frame.
Much as I loved it, though, it couldn't top last year's FCB Cadell exhibition and Cadell's wonderful northern light and glittering reflections.
This time, on my way out, I remembered to cross the road to see Charles Jencks's Landform - easy to miss if, like me, you always walk up from the airport bus stop. A few years ago, I was lucky enough to visit his Garden of Cosmic Speculation.
But what made my day was discovering the most charming, old-fashioned allotments you could imagine within the gallery grounds. Fruit trees, roses, peonies ... I'd never noticed them before as I always walk the other way. Now I want to know why there isn't a kitchen garden at the Tate.

5 comments:

Alex said...

These are wonderful. I am seriously jealous. Do you know our gem of an Art gallery at The Barber Institute of Fine Art? If you're ever in Birmingham do let me know and I'll happily show you round.

mary said...

It was well worth the trip, Alex. But you know, I've been to B'ham City Gallery but I've never been to the Barber Institute; partly because whenever I'm in Birmingham - not very often - I'm with a friend who is completely bored by art. There's no converting her, I've tried!

Isabelle said...

Good grief! You were about a mile from my house at the Landform thingie. I wish I'd known. I could have told you how much I like your blog and maybe bought you a coffee. Hmm.

Isabelle said...

If you come again, the coffee offer is still open. (And a bun?)

Glad to know about "Gone Girl". I was vaguely contemplating reading it.

mary said...

If only I'd known, Isabelle - and Cornflower just down the road, too. Truth is, it was supposed to be a working day and the exhibition was a flying visit that I'd sneaked in for myself.
How lucky you are living in walking distance. Not only the art but also their nice café.