So it didn't really matter that I'm a lukewarm Bloomsbury-ite. I can get quite swept away with lifestyle envy at Charleston. But I'm not convinced that any of it translates well into an art gallery setting. If they hadn't lived in squares and loved in triangles - what a brilliant marketing ploy - would we remember any of them, except for Virginia? I can't see that Vanessa had an original thought ... it's a bit of Matisse here, a bit of Cézanne there, and it all looks so much better on the walls at home.
Still, it made a pleasant afternoon out, though I whizzed around in half-an-hour because - well, there just isn't very much to it, is there? (Okay, I admit, I'd really like one of her rugs.)
I was lucky because I'd been expecting hordes of Bloomsbury-genuflectors but there was hardly anyone there. (Got chatting with a couple of gallery attendants who were definitely not worshippers at the shrine and they clearly would have given Vanessa a C-minus for trying.)
But I do like the fabrics and that sense of painting happening in the middle of a domestic life. (Okay, I know that nanny features in the paintings!)
I liked the texture of the canvas coming though Vanessa's loose-weave grey dress in the self-portrait.
|Virginia Woolf, c1912|
|The Other Room, Late 1930s|
|Interior with the Artists' Daughter, 1935-6|
And this is just armchair envy ...