My first love was the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood – could not get enough of that Rosetti, Byrne Jones and Hunt! Despite all the reading I have done over the years, this young acolyte has passed me by…that is until yesterday.
It was surprising that I recognised quite a few pieces but that is because Hughes’s works have been used on stationery items for some time. At first I thought this would be a little twee but I was wrong.
The whole exhibition shows his progression as an artist of portraits through to his large canvases of ‘blue phantasies’. These were the highlight and so nice to sit and gaze in peace and tranquility, while the crazy German market pulses away outside.
This was the most beautiful painting: The Valkyrie’s Vigil:
The Valkyrie sits upon the ramparts, having removed her helmet and sandals following her work in the battle that had just taken place.
This particular Valkyrie looks wistfully down as if in deep thought about what she has done. Hughes’s brushstrokes swirl through the background adding to the air of melancholy. For me, the way he has the light of the coming dawn bouncing off her bare skin was the most outstanding feature – simply gorgeous!
It’s a paying exhibition (unless you have BMAG membership!) and this work would be worth paying an entrance fee for.