Monday, 27 August 2012

"John Craxton: a life of gifts"

This is the title of one of the Presteigne Festival art exhibitions: we went to The Workhouse Gallery to see it after my talk this morning. (I took the photograph from upstairs where beautiful carpets and rugs are to be found, above the exhibition space.)

Craxton was brother to the oboist, Janet, Nick Daniel's teacher, and friend of the Berkeley family. Hence "Into the ravine", the name Michael has given to his new work, matching that of the Craxton painting owned by Michael's father Lennox.

There is something a bit Samuel Palmer-ish about Craxton's work, as you see it in this fine show. Maybe it's because of other influences appearing so strong that his name is less celebrated than that of his contemporaries, Graham Sutherland's for instance. But as Michael said in the course of last night's discussion, "We are all a synthesis of our own experience."

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