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In the afternoon I attend the Artshape Symposium.There were moving presentations from ArtBridge students past and Present. Some having gone on to very impressive futures.
Working on the large hare for the Cirencester Cotswold Hare Trail in aid of the National Star College, which is perhaps taking longer than I thought due to its very large size and some parts, like behind the ears, being very hard to access with my paint brush as he’s looking upwards to the sky so the ears are very very close to the back. He’s looking quite handsome as Herr Schubert with a scroll of music for the Trout Quintet coming out of one of his top left hand pocket and a pocket watch out of the lower - three dip pens protruding from the right hand top pocket and a baton from the lower. I’m painting piano keys around his spats and a string quartet on his two sides.
R drills two tiny holes for the metal arms of the round spectacles I am attaching to Herr Schubert.
Busy trying to refine shapes of the instruments etc on Herr Schubert.
My tweet for International Women’s Day
On #InternationalWomensDay, love & blessings to all those in war torn countries, refugees & the repressed. Praying for peace & better world
Accompanied by a photo of my huge painting Fin de Siecle which lives with Robert and Toyah which King Crimson used on their CD The Power to Believe.
Herr Schubert needs to be laid down on his tummy this evening so that I can get to the areas that he normally rests on.
Work until 4am so that ……
…..R can deliver him to Burford by quarter to ten.
Working on the Australian commission
Nice note on Facebook from Adriana, who visited my studio when she was a student at Gloucestershire College, reproducing a page from Evolver arts magazine which reproduces my newspaper painting ‘Cosmopolitans’ in a piece about the Fresh Art Fair.
Evie from Panter & Hall phones re the Fresh Art Fair (who have reproduced my painting ‘Cosmopolitans’ in their adverts) asking if I have a large painting to feature on their stand.
Up to the National Star College for a presentation to some of the fifty ambassadors they have appointed to help celebrate this 50th anniversary of the brilliant work they do with their inspirational students. Richard is one of the fifty and I was there as a long-time Patron.
We do the seventy mile drive to Wells Cathedral School which takes a little longer than anticipated. Its a nice sunny day and when we eventually find the right school building there is a car parking space already allocated for us. We are offered a cup of tea shown round the school by two delightful girls in year 13; both flautists who have got places one at the Royal Northern College of Music the other to the Royal Welsh College of Music. First we see the splendid new concert Hall, Cedars Hall, which is beautiful in both its design ad us of materials. They then take us to see the art department, via the gymnasium and swimming pool. Lovely creative spaces for both the lower and upper schools where the sixth formers who are studying art have dedicated studio spaces. They then take us down Vicars Close to visit the old Music School and Music library; exquisite and fascinating, shelves lined with brown card file boxes full of music with the composers’ name written in pen on the spines. Such a beautiful environment to learn, work and grow in. As we are walking past the Cathedral we bump into Mark with the junior school head, walking Mark’s two dogs lily and Iris. He invites us to drinks in the drawing room pre the concert which his parents are at as they are celebrating their 60th wedding anniversary. He has kindly booked us a room at The Crown, where we go to freshen up beforehand. I also meet Elizabeth the Head who after the concert, shows me her glorious panelled office / meeting room painted in red, with huge copies of paintings that had originally lived there but are now in collections such as the National Gallery and the Courtauld Institute. as well as being picturesque it has comfortable sofas for meetings, with soft toys arranged around the tops. There’s also a rather wonderful composite portrait by one of the classes that complements the large eighteenth century pieces rather well. after a brief chat to Mark’s parents we walk to Cedars Hall again for tonights concert -three concerti played by the Wells Cathedral School Symphony Orchestra and three of their brilliant young soloists, two of whom won last year’s competition the first being Ronald Binge’s Concerto for Alto Saxaphone ; Shostakovich ‘cello concerto number 1 and Chopin’s piano concerto number 2. The electrifying opening of the saxaphone concerto sent a tingle through my body; Luke Reidinger’s playing is outstanding as is that of the orchestra. It is fascinating watching the bows of so many young violinists rising and falling in unison. It’s as excitingly picturesque as it is to listen to. The accoustics of Cedars hall are fabulous. So exciting I find myself sitting on the edge of my seat. This is followed by Nigel Thean on ‘cello. Nigel had been at the school last year and was to have played this in concert then but he sadly broke his finger so was unable to do so. He’s currently studying in Germany ( with a maestro ) and plays superbly. The final concerto , Chopin, is played by Adam Heron who is so good he played at last year’s Cheltenham Music Festival and is to do so again this year. Such a privilege to share in these stunning performances. Its lovely to meet these young musicians and other members of staff at the drinks party afterwards.
Travel back to studio and begin work.