There has been a lot of criticism of the new portrait of the Duchess of Cambridge. Here‘s the Independent’s view.
So I went to have a look this morning.
The gallery wasn’t busy and I was able to see the portrait by myself just after ten.
It was alright I suppose, but it was the sort of painting, that was made for a biscuit tin or a chocolate box. In some ways, it was too photographic, and as I like photographs for portraits I slipped into the Taylor Wessing Photgraphic Portrait Prize, to see some good ones.
I was not disappointed and the exhibition was well worth the two pound entrance.
As to Her Highness’s portrait, I’ll give a final verdict, when I see it on a tin.
I took the lift to the top of Tate Modern to have a coffee with a friend.
This is surely one of the best free views of the City of London. Especially, if your friend buys the coffee.
The only better view is that of the peregrine falcons nesting on the chimney. They can be glimpsed by telescope and video screen from in front of the building. There’s more about them here.
I don’t know much about art, except what I’ve picked up off a friend and a couple of talks, but I had heard that Titian’s First Masterpiece is worth seeing at the National Gallery. After all it has been brought all the way from St. Petersberg.
I found it very much worth travelling to Trafalgar Square on two buses. one of which was a genuine Routemaster on Heritage Route 15. Especially, as the entry fee at the gallery was what you felt like putting in an honesty box.
I might even go again, if one of my friends wants to go before they close the exhibition in mid-August.
Dave Pearson was not an artist I’d heard of, until his exhibition at the Bermondsey Project Space was previewed on BBC London News a few days ago. Someone on that preview, said he was better than Hockney. Judge for yourself.
I did ask before I took these pictures and afterwards feel it was the right decision. Especially for me, as he died just a few months after C, my late wife, did. He was still painting up until his death.
You’ll have to hurry if you want to catch this exhibition as it finishes on the 19th of May. You can find out more about Dave Pearson at the Dave Pearson Trust website.
I was actually going South of the Border to visit the Bermondsey Project Space, which is one of the more unusual exhibition spaces in London, buried in deepest Bermondsey. These pictures might help you find it, as they document my walk from the 21 bus stop at Bricklayers Arms.
In the end I found it quite easily. But it would’ve helped, if some of the street signs hadn’t been nicked.
I just went down Pages Walk and then turned right into Willow Way, where the Project Space is at number 46, which is clearly marked.
They do have donation boxes and I can’t say I do it every time, but I generally drop a note in every so often, when I visit the British Museum or the National Gallery, which I do fairly regularly on a walk-through basis. Both are great totally dry short-cuts in the rain, with a lot more to see.
In the next few months, London’s transport system will start to accept credit cards, in addition to Oyster cards. You’ll just touch in, in the same way.
It would be interesting to note, if the ability to touch a credit card on a reader to say donate £3, would increase donations in museums and galleries, as often finding suitable change is not as easy, as getting out a card. You might even be able to use Oyster, as this might encourage visitors to buy one.
Tom Hunter is a well-known artist based in Hackney. A friend had invited me to a talk at the National Gallery by Tom to discuss a painting by Piero di Cosimo called A Satyr Mourning a Nymph. Tom had used it as an inspiration for one of a series of large format photographs based on a series of headlines in the Hackney Gazette. There is more about the talk here.
It was all very enlightening and enjoyable. It made me think that why don’t museums and galleries do this sort of talk and discussion more.
The National Gallery had just set up several ranks of folding chairs in front of the Piero di Cosimo painting and admission to the talk was free.
In this case the discussion was quite deep and some new insights into the painting seemed to have come forward. My friend even felt that the nymph was pregnant, which was a view supported by others and according to one of the curators of the gallery had not been proposed before.
In some ways it was slightly surreal for me, as I’d just featured in a headline in the Hackney Gazette. I can’t find it on-line, but it was about my 92 Clubs trip.