Many years ago Peter and I purchased a painting by an artist unknown to us. We acquired it from the Portal Gallery in London, and it’s been giving us pleasure now for over ten years. It’s titled Portland Bill, and it’s by Graham Ward.
Regulars to the Artlog may recall that some months ago I became almost incoherent with happiness when Graham Ward left a message on the site, and we’ve been corresponding ever since. Graham has now opened a café in Oscar Road, Broadstairs, and from the photographs he’s sent to me, it looks absolutely wonderful. Any of you within visiting distance of it should get over to Oscar’s Festival Café as soon as you can to patronise it and help this marvellous enterprise along.
The symbol of the Festival of Britain, which was celebrated in the year of my birth!
Graham with friend, Tanner.
It’s been my experience that great artists frequently make great cooks. If I lived in or close to Broadstairs I’d be in Graham’s café for at least one meal a day. At least!!! Or I’d take over in the kitchen for an afternoon a week and make him go to his studio and paint!
Good luck Graham! When we come to call maybe Tanner will be presiding as the café’s resident ‘greeter’! We’ll bring Jack too!
It’ll be dog bliss!
I’ve always had a love affair with boxes. At the cottage there are some that I decorated because I couldn’t bring myself to dispose of them after the contents had been consumed. ‘Rex’s Box’ with its masted ship made an appearance in the previous post.
I painted the foliate head below because I couldn’t bring myself to throw away the rather flimsy box, once filled with pralines that have long since gone, though the delicious scent remains!
Inside, my favourite red oxide…
… and the ‘treasure’ stored in the box: a piece of exquisitely woven Sue Hiley-Harris textile art in indigo-dyed yarn, miraculously looped into two conjoined and, to my eyes, seamless rings, laid in a bed of flax. A much-treasured gift from the artist.
Another ceramic that’s never seen the light of day on the Artlog, a foliate head dish.
A French anchovy dish that’s appeared in many compositions…
… and the foliate head bowl… thrown by Pip Koppel and decorated by me… that appears in the above painting too.
A pecking hen toy, another much-loved object that occasionally pops up in my work.
… and the Scottie Wilson milk jug from the same painting. The child’s clogs were worn by Peter’s father Dick when he was a boy.
Finally, the narrow painting I made to fit between the mantleshelf and the hood of the sitting room fire. In it can be seen both the Scottie Wilson jug and ‘Rex’s Box’.