Wednesday, 22 October 2014



Meanwhile the mind, from pleasure less,
Withdraws into its happiness;
The mind, that ocean where each kind
Does straight its own resemblance find,
Yet it creates, transcending these,
Far other worlds, and other seas;
Annihilating all that’s made
To a green thought in a green shade.
The Garden by Andrew Marvell

I haven't been for a browse along Cork Street for ages, but I knew exactly where I was heading yesterday when I left the Royal Academy ... to this exhibition of new Howard Hodgkin prints at Alan Cristea. The show's title Green Thoughts refers to Marvell's poem. Hodgkin sounds as if he might be terrifying to meet, and journalists are warned not to ask him what his paintings mean or he'll burst into tears. Of course, this could be out of sheer exasperation at being asked the same question yet again. Anyway, the girl in the gallery yesterday said writers tend to play up his reputation for being a prickly interviewee. You can read Andrew Marr's fascinating essay here.
And I learned something new. I had no idea that Hodgkin was a cousin of Roger Fry.

3 comments:

callmemadam said...

This is the kind of post to make me wish (sometimes) that I lived in London.

Andrew Marr has shot up in my estimation now that I've read that Guradian piece. Love the print shown there, Spots before my eyes.

Plus the Marvell is one of my 'know it off by heart' poems. Thanks for writing about the exhibition.

callmemadam said...

Aargh! I did a Grauniad. Sorry.

mary said...

Glad you enjoyed it, Callmemadam. It did make me feel envious of Andrew Marr's many talents! I hadn't thought of him as an art critic - but he's better than many whose day job it is.
And Guradian is very apt for a Grauniad, don't you think!