Sunday, 27 August 2017

For sheer enjoyment and pleasure in discovering 'new' forgotten artists, True to Life: British Realist Painting in the 1920s and 1930s will be a strong contender for my favourite exhibition of the year. It's on in Edinburgh until the end of October and I'd love to go back for a second visit, though I don't suppose I'll get the chance. But summer exhibitions at the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art are invariably my cup of tea and well worth the cost of a cheap flight. (Why are cheap flights always so much cheaper than the train?) Anyway, this time I was on my way up to Aberdeen, so it worked very well as I was able to cadge a lift north that same evening. (I still feel sad that I never got to taste the spinach and hazelnut cake in the gallery cafe, as recommended by Cornflower.)

The Cruise, Mary Adshead, 1934
I meant to write this up weeks ago but I've just found my scribbled pencil notes on the back of my boarding pass, so before I lose it forever here's some of my favourites, in no particular order.

Mary Adshead's cruise looked as if it might have been rather earnest with lots of educational lectures. Definitely not a booze cruise ... look at that blue and white tea set. I love the young girl stubbing out her ciggie - and those dressing gowns!

The Family, Bernard Fleetwood-Walker, 1932
My first thought was that The Family could be the cover for a Persephone Classic, maybe by Monica Dickens or Richmal Crompton. I'd never heard of the artist - but then I realised why his style looked kind of familiar.

Adoration of Old Men
Adoration of Old Men, Staney Spencer, 1937

This made me laugh. In your dreams, Stanley. But I do like that rainbow scarf. Stanley is always very good on knitwear. (Click on the image for a better view.)

The Day War Broke Out, Mom, 1939, Victor Hume Moody
I loved this. The title says it all ... the trepidation in her eyes, chin up, the hint of half-mourning for another war that seemed like yesterday ...

WhyWar? Charles Spencelayh, 1938
This is an old favourite. The Daily Sketch headline reads 'Premier Flying to Hitler.' You can see it better here.

Children in the Country, Bernard Fleetwood-Walker, 1942
























Maurice, Beryl and Amy missing their mum.

Walter Rankin, Local Defence Volunteer,  William Oliphant Hutchison, 1940

Dad's Army. Fighting on mugs on tea. This one was a retired newsagent.

Hiking
Hiking, 1936, James Walker Tucker

Here's another old favourite. Just look at those polished shoes!


The Fried Fish Shop, Clifford Rowe, 1936
















I'd sooner a mug of chip shop tea than any dainty afternoon tea cup. But I think I prefer this painting from the Tate. You can smell the vinegar.

Selling the Daily Worker, Charles Branson, 1937

The apron caught my eye - but I think it's just a poster tucked under her belt.

Well, I did warn you they were in no particular order. I could have spent hours and hours in this exhibition. I did spend hours and hours! I'll try and put some more up later in the week.

6 comments:

Lucille said...

Really going to try to get there. Half price train tickets if we book today.

Mary said...

Oh, do book, Lucille - it's a lovely exhibition.

Cosy Books said...

Oh Mary, that was a feast for the eyes. Thanks for posting your favourites...just off to get ready for work but I'll be popping back for another look.

Vintage Reading said...

Love the Hiking picture. That would make a great book cover.

Veronica Cooke said...

I would love to see this exhibition but have neither the time nor money at the moment...

I am looking forward to more from you on this. I loved all your selections and agree absolutely re the Perspehone cover and your previous comment in a previous post about Virago covers - the original green ones had superb covers.

Mary said...

I did check to see if the exhibition is travelling elsewhere, Veronica - but sadly it isn't. It is a rather extravagant day out, but I only do it once a year and if I can get a return flight for £50-ish, I think, treat myself! I'm low-maintenance most of the time!
I will post more, just haven't had time to faff about with the images.

Darlene, you would have loved this! But you'd love Edinburgh, we'll have to get you there one day!

That's what I thought Nicola. I keep thinking I've seen it already on a book jacket, but can't place it.