We visited Saffron Walden recently and discovered the Fry Art Gallery which is open from April to the end of October each year.
The gallery provides a home to artwork by artists known as the Great Bardfield Artists who are also the subject of a recent publication - Bawden, Ravilious and the Artists of Great Bardfield.
|The book of the exhibition | V&A Publications|
On display at the Museum are some of the paintings, prints, wallpapers, books, fabrics and ceramics created by the Great Bardfield art community between 1930 and 1970.
At present there are two exhibitions - closing very soon (25th October) - which cover:
- From Eric Ravilious To Grayson Perry - to mark the 30th anniversary of the opening display of the North-West Essex Collection in the Fry Art Gallery
- The Art Of Acquisition - The Great Bardfield Artists' Houses - about the interior of the houses
|Watercolour paintings by Edward Bawden and Eric Ravilious|
|Eric Ravilious Submarine Series|
Lithographs - done while he was working as a war artist
|Woodcuts by Eric Ravilious|
|Ceramics with graphics by Eric Ravilious|
I have a particular liking for those artists who record the places where they live and it's fascinating to see them recording life in an Essex village.
You can see some of the images in the exhibition better in other articles about the exhibitions which include:
- The only art is Essex by Martin Gayford | The Spectator
- Great Bardfield Artists eclebrated in new exhibition: The Art of Acquisition | Country Living
- Fry Art Gallery explores art, decor and houses of the Great Bardfield Artists | Culture 24
|An Illustration of where everybody lived in the 1950s|
- with pencil annotations regarding those who had also lived there in earlier times
Great Bardfield is a village in Essex and became a place where a number of figurative artists made their homes.
Between the 1930s and the 1950s, the artists living there included Edward Bawden and Eric Ravilious, as well as John Aldridge RA, George Chapman, Stanley Clifford-Smith, Audrey Cruddas, Walter Hoyle, Sheila Robinson, Michael Rothenstein, Kenneth Rowntree and Marianne Straub.
The Bardfield artists exhibited in the large 'open house' shows in the isolated village in 1954, 1955 and 1958. These shows attracted thousands of visitors and made the art community famous thanks to national press coverage and several one-off and touring shows in the late 1950sTaechers Pack
The Trustees have made good use of their website to provide access to other aspects of the work of the artists
The Trustees now have the opportunity to buy the freehold of the building - which help preserve this important way of seeing an important part of the story of British art.
There's a link to their donation page on the home page of the website.
Visiting:The Gallery is open from the first Sunday in April to last Sunday in October annually:
- Monday and Wednesday : Closed
- Tuesday, Thursday and Friday: 2.00pm - 5.00pm
- Saturday : 11.00am - 5.00pm
- Sunday : 2.15pm - 5.00pm