|Claude Monet's Poplar Series - five paintings from around the worldIncluded in the Inventing Impressionism exhibition at the National Gallery|
All the exhibition is good but one room is exceptional - and that's the one holding five paintings from the
This photo is a tease. Despite some very odd lighting which was a major challenge I have better photos of the series of five paintings - but I'm saving those for the review!
Reviews from others to date confirm my perspective that this is a very definite MUST SEE exhibition.
This is the most significant Impressionist show we’ve seen in this country in 20 years, says an awe-struck Richard Dorment
So now for the other things which caught my eye or caused me to comment during March.
Every year two artists are awarded The Turner Medal - one member from the Royal Watercolour Society and one member of the Royal Instutute of Painterst in Water Colours.
|Andy Wood PRI presents Deborah Walker with her Turner Medal|
- Deborah Walker RI was awarded the "Turner Medal" by Andy Wood, President of the Royal Institute of Painters in Water Colours - at the Annual Exhibition at the Mall Galleries. Her painting 'Detail' also won two other prizes - the The Escoda Barcelona Award and the Anthony J. Lester Art Critic Award. (BTW Click the pic - Isn't Andy's President's regalia absolutely marvellous!)
- David Brayne RWS is the RWS recipient of this year's Turner Medal. I wrote about David and his very interesting working methods back in 2007 in this post Royal Watercolour Society - artists and their working methods
- This post set out the problem Can a portrait artist play fast and loose with a commission
- Update re: Nelson Shanks portrait of Bill Clinton Daphne Todd offers her opinion on what he did and what she has done. I don't think anybody will be keeping Daphne waiting in future!
- Every year the Royal Watercolour Society holds a competition for non-members and an exhibition at the Bankside Gallery. This is my Review: RWS Contemporary Watercolour Competition 2015. I've got major reservations about this competition based on the exhibition I saw and suggest this post is relevant to all those who might be thinking of applying next year and members of the RWS.
- This was my post about Sky Arts Landscape Artist of the Year 2015 - Call for entries. However I have been in contact with the producer and I will be returning to this.
Major Museums and Art Galleries
- I've now learned the trick to trying to see the Sargent Exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery. A friend went to see it last week at the end of Tuesday afternoon just before it closed and had 90 minutes peace and quiet! So that's the new recommendation - go late in the day and early in the week if you want to see the paintings!
|The Sargent Exhibition during the press preview - I always wait to the end when it thins out|
- An exhibition I plan to see very soon is Painting Paradise: The Art of the Garden The Queen's Gallery, Buckingham Palace Friday, 20 March 2015 to Sunday, 11 October 2015
Bringing together paintings, botanical studies, drawings, books, manuscripts and decorative arts, the exhibition explores the changing character of the garden from the 16th to the early 20th century. It includes works by Leonardo da Vinci, Maria Sibylla Merian and Carl Fabergé, and some of the earliest and rarest surviving depictions of gardens and plants.
|Lodewijk Toeput (Pozzoserrato), Pleasure Garden with a Maze, c.1579-84|
- I've yet to see Kew's Heritage Trees by Masumi Yamanaka at the Shirley Sherwood Gallery of Botanical Art at Kew Gardens - although I have now met the artist! The exhibition runs until 9 August 2015, (9.30am to 5.30pm everyday except Monday)
- Tomorrow I'm going to the preview of the Ravillious exhibition about Eric Ravillious at the Dulwich Picture Gallery. I'm expecting to be very pleased to see it. The exhibition opens to the public on 1 April and continues until 31 August. I'm expecting to recommend it.
- Last Monday I paid a visit to the Irish Embassy to hear about the biggest retrospective of Irish art held in the UK for some 30+ years. The Art of a Nation - an exhibition of some 70 Irish Works from the very extensive Allied Irish Banks and Crawford Art Gallery Collection will be at the Mall Galleries from 13 May 2015 to 31 May 2015.
|Examples of the paintings in the exhibition|
- Last week I went to the Private View of the Annual Exhibition of the Royal Institute of Painters in Water Colours - having seen a sneak preview on the previous day and had a long chat with the Andy Wood, the new President. The exhibition continues until 11th April at the Mall Galleries in London.
- 203rd Annual Exhibition of Royal Institute of Painters in Water Colours #1 - Prizewinners and Events - this includes pictures of nearly all the artwork which won prizes. Plus a listing of all the events and there are LOTS of events during the course of this exhibition!
- Annual Exhibition of Royal Institute of Painters in Water Colours #2 - Open Entry - for the first time I can publish the numbers in relation to the open entry - how many submitted, passed the digital selection and were selected for exhibition and finally hung!
- I'm going to see the Spring Exhibition of the Royal Watercolour Society tomorrow. Watercolour Etc. showcases our artists' latest work in water-based media as well as another media in which they make artwork such as oils, print and photography. The exhibition opened on Friday and continues until 25 April at the Bankside Gallery on the South Bank (11-6pm every day during the exhibition)
- You can view the online version of the the California Art Club 's Gold Medal Exhibition of March 29 – April 19, 2015 USC Fisher Museum of Art, Los Angeles
- This is my review of the Royal Society of British Artists 2015 - Annual Exhibition
- This is my review of 116th Annual Exhibition of The Pastel Society - specially for Felicity who was in India and missed it.
Upcoming exhibitions include:
- The Annual Exhibition of the Society of Botanical Artists - In Pursuit of Plants can be viewed between 17 to 26 April 2015 at Westminster Central Hall, Storey’s Gate, London SW1H 9NH. I've got two works in the show but there's going to be lots much better than mine!
- The Annual Exhibition of the Royal Society of Portrait Painters at the Mall Galleries 16 April 2015 to 1 May 2015. The PV is always the biggest crush ever.
Art Groups and Joint Exhibitions
- A Threadneedle Space Exhibition is a commentary on what's involved in hiring the Threadneedle Space for an exhibition. Thanks to Lachlan Goudie ROI and Tim Benson VPROI for sharing their experience of their exhibition last week with me. I've checked a couple of aspects I wasn't sure about and the blog post has been updated since it was first published.
For @paulbellart @AnneBH_Art @clairesparker @AlStaffordArt @heatherharding here's @daphne_todd laughing at my work pic.twitter.com/AMOaPi41es
— Lachlan Goudie (@lachlangoudie) March 25, 2015
- The artists who participated in the BBC1 television programme The Big Painting Challenge are also having an exhibition in London next month. For more details see The Bigger Picture - the Big Painting Challenge Artists have an Exhibition
Art materials and supplies
- Jeanette Jobson (Illustrated Life) did a review of her OttLite Easel Lamp. She has lots of great pics relating to how the lamp is assembled on the easel.
- I acquired a Swordfish pencil sharpener with a helical blade and have now sharpened just about every pencil I own. This was after I found out how to sort out the problem if a bit of core breaks off inside. Highly recommended. When the sharpener works, pencil sharpening can be like cleaning pastels using cornmeal - it's a very therapeutic and calming activity!
- I'm getting excited because Unison Pastels announced
More #colourporn than a girl can handle! New colours coming soon.... pic.twitter.com/m0CDGsM6TA
— Unison Colour (@UnisonColour) March 27, 2015
Art Business & Marketing
- Place matters to people's opinions. Value is in the eye of the beholder? is an interesting video of people viewing paintings at the Museum for Modern Art in Arnhem, Netherlands.
Selling art online
- My blog post The growth - and demise - of Etsy? commented on Etsy "going public" and selling stock. To me it seems avery different organisation than the one which started out around about the same time I started this blog.
Drawing and Sketching
- I spoke at two events about Drawing at the Ulster Festival of Art and Design earlier this month - see From Artist to Author - Ulster University Festival of Art & Design and An Education in Classical Painting and I got to draw the people watching our panel discussion....
|The front rows of the Drawing Together audience|
pen and ink in Moleskine Sketchbook
- Plus early this month I did a book signing at the Mall Galleries with James Hobbs (author of Sketch Your World) and we both met up with Anne Blankson-Hemans (from The Big Painting Challenge). The only problem was the Mall Galleries almost sold out of my book - as has every other bookshop. It's currently being reprinted and Sketching 365 should be available again sometime in April.
|James Hobbs, Anne Blankson-Hemans and me|
at the Mall Galleries Book Signing
- HS and Derwent Pencils ran a 90 minute Sketchoff (spin off from The Big Painting Challenge) where people had a limited time to draw Una Stubbs from a photo - you can See the results of the Sketchoff
- Urban Sketchers London had a Sketchcrawl at the Victoria & Albert Museum this month. It was soooooooo sunny I stayed outside and drew the people sitting in the sunshine around the pool. Free life drawing practice!
|Sunny afternoon at the V&A Museum|
pen and ink in Moleskine Sketchbook
- The next London Urban Sketchers Sketchcrawl is Let's Draw St Paul's to the Thames - 26th April 2015
- So you think you have problems painting? - This post highlights the blind painter Sargy Mann and has a video which describes and shows how he manages to continue to paint in colour on large canvases
- The Big Painting Challenge takes over the the May edition of 'The Artist' magazine with articles about both Judge Daphne Todd and one of the contestants Anne Blankson-Hemans
- Botanical Artist and art teacher Martin J Allen needs to start blogging! He's got a fascinating post about how to paint blackurrants on his Facebook Page - but of course it's totally invisible to anyone who's not on Facebook.
- Instant Improvement: Critique and Correction Workshop is a very interesting post by Janene Walkky - with an annotated example!
- For the botanical art collector who has everything! Oprah Winfrey is selling her dinner service of Royal Copenhagen plates based on the Flora Danica! Who knew she loved botanical art?
- The 17th Annual Botanical Art Exhibit is taking place at Filoli in California - until June 7th
Tonight is the Final Episode of The Big Painting Challenge and we found out who won!
Follow three of the final four painters on Twitter tonight: @Army_Artist Richard Salter @paulbellart Paul Bell, @clairesparker Claire Parker. Amy Goldring is also in the final.
Here's my blog posts to date:
- The Great British Paint-Off: BBC1 searches for best amateur artists
- The Big Painting Challenge starts 22nd February on BBC1
- So what did you think of The Big Painting Challenge?
- The Big Painting Challenge - Episode 2
- Review: The Big Painting Challenge - Episode 3
- Review: The Big Painting Challenge - Episode 4
- Review: The Big Painting Challenge - Episode 5
and finally..... there should be one more - called Top 10 Tips - appearing on the WH Smith Blog in the near future (possibly tomorrow!)