a walk in the park – inside

May 4, 2010

at the Towner to see 3 exhibitions – East Sussex Open primarily for Jim’s work and Underwater and this as above. A lovely piece of Defoe explains the rationale of the ‘ A Walk in the Park’ exhibition ‘ . . the South Downs, the pleasantest and most delightful of their kind in the nation . .’ . The Downs are the newest National Park. I was struck by the work and the development from purely literal landscape painting to abstract – all the work shown from the Towner collection. I was also struck by names of an era – Alfred Grace Harold Swannick, Rex Vicat Cole, Leopold Rivers, Ernest Alfred Sallis Benney – all very sound and solid. But back to the paintings,  Harold Mockford’s ‘ Chalk Pit in the Downs’ is charged with an energy and robustious use of paint – no visual reference handy  – have inserted another Mockford from the collection as always a pleasure . .

‘When the Lights Come On’  Harold Mockford. . also struck by a Duncan Grant of Firle Place  and Edward Bawden ‘8.30pm View of Newhaven’. Was reminded that Bawden taught me to cut a perfect circle with a lino cutter and was always immaculately turned out in tie and three-piece suit! and quite enthralled with this Ethelbert White ‘Sussex Landscape’

In the Underwater exhibition ‘brings together artworks about total submersion’, a very seductive Bill Viola – well, it’s a video . .

. . and got quite hooked on ‘Image Bank’ a series of drawings by Ed Pien ‘disgorge the menace and chaos of the unconscious onto paper’. Yes, felt like a very heavy session of cranio! Back outside the galleries . .

. .  some good spaces and long windows offering the views beyond . .

. . well, we clearly need to improve on streetscapes. Any chance that the council might have asked architects to include the outside area – no  . . .

. . not too inspiring but all items necessary and an  excellent view if you like tennis.  As a building it works well inside and looks good on the 3 elevations visible. Would be even better if the Congress Theatre had been part of the redevelopment to avoid the ‘add on’ look. However, all fun on a rainy day.



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