Some you win, some you lose

In addition to the exhibitions, I’m also looking to visit smaller galleries in search of a certain number of artists I am interested in: Christopher Nevinson, David Bomberg, Paul Nash and Stanley Spencer.Leamington Spa Gallery was my first attempt – they have a Spencer and a Nevinson in their collection. It would be easy to call them to find out if they are on display, but that takes the fun out of this odyssey. So, on the way back from Bedford, I stopped off at the Royal Pump Rooms.

STRIKE 1-no Nevinson or Spencer, which was a shame…


Bicyclettes, Paris -Christopher Nevinson


Cookham Rise-Stanley Spencer









but there was a lovely Vanessa Bell called ‘A Venetian Window’ from 1926:

imageThis was sumptuous in terms of colouring but it was hidden away a little. The card said “her paintings tend to be beautifully composed and often contemplative” and I think this is a perfect example of that. There is something about a window that gives so many artists the opportunity to reveal a perect world and this is no exception.





STRIKE 2: New Walk Art Gallery, Leicester.

Decided to contact this gallery prior to a visit I have planned for next week.  There are two Nevinsons in their collection, Oxford on the Cherwell and One Summer’s Day:

Oxford, On the Cherwell

One Summer's Day

Alas, They are not on display either, so today was a make or break situation in Coventry.


Herbert Museum and Art Gallery has a number of paintings that I would love to see, so would today be more successful…?

One room-and several moments of smiles, sighs and ‘yes!’ moments. Amongst others, there was a lovely Nevinson, a fabulous Nash, a melancholic Lowry and the most gorgeous Bomberg that will get its own post shortly!


Summer in the Downs -Christopher Nevinson


Northleach Church -LS Lowry


The Stackyard -Paul Nash


Evening, Cornwall, Towards St Ives -David Bomberg

The joy of going along with uncertainty of whether or not I will see a certain work of art outweighs the disappointment of the work not being out. Think the next few weeks will be a lot of fun -will she, won’t she?


First trip of the year: Part One- Flat Stanley

Made a journey to Manchester Art Gallery to see Stanley Spencer: Heaven in Hell and also The Sensory War.

Resurrection Cookham

At The Tate, I now always go to the 1910 gallery as my favourite paintings are on display there.  Spencer’s Resurrection, Cookham is fascinating to see as there is always something new to spot and the scale of the piece is vast that it can be difficult to know where to start looking at this.  There is a seat opposite and it is worth taking time out just to let your eye wander through the scene.


Convoy Arriving with Wounded

Convoy Arriving with Wounded

At Mancester, I actually made a mistake in viewing Spencer after the Sensory War and the experience felt ‘flat’ – no pun intended.  However, as he concentrated on the domestic nature of his war, you could see why these large scale canvases so suited the chapel from which they have come. This one that begins the narrative was the one I found the most interesting. The convoy of wounded soldiers is forcing its way through the bushes to arrive at the gates.  The figure that appears to be hanging on the gates was interesting – was he trying to stop the gates or helping to open them?  As the hospital catered for both physical injury and mental incapacity, I did wonder if this was linked at all.  The rest of the panels explored different aspects of life at the hospital and the experiences Spencer had in Salonika during the war.

I do like his style – especially looking for the allegory within his work so I am certainly interested enough to consider a trip to Cookham to visit the gallery and to see the influence that Cookham had on Spencer.


January Journeys


Manchester Art Gallery to see The Sensory War 1914-2014 and Stanley Spencer: Heaven in a Hell of War.

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Whitechapel Gallery, London for Adventures of the Black Square