The print comes in an edition of 30 and measures 22 x 15cm. The print can be purchased directly from the Scottish Gallery for £125.
I recently created this three colour screen print exclusively for the St Jude’s exhibition ‘Ten Printmakers’ which is being held at the Scottish Gallery in Edinburgh this July.
I visited the Dunmore Pineapple with my partner one summer evening. With the warm evening light already on the darkening it felt somehow like we had landed in a corner of Italy. The exotic little building recalled something of the spirit of the famous gardens at Bomarzo in central Italy, with their monumental stone monsters and peculiar pavilions. It was constructed in the late 18th century as a summer house which overlooked a glasshouse in which precious pineapples were gently coaxed by fire-warmed air to grow in this unlikely northern setting. The main house to which the pineapple once belonged now lies as a foreboding ruin at the centre of a forest a little way beyond the walled garden, its atmosphere quite the opposite to this enchanting and playful folly
The exhibition ‘Ten Printmakers’ runs from from the 3rd to the 27th of July 2013. I will be showing a number of new original collages and prints alongside the work of Christopher Brown, Chloe Cheese, Linda Green, Peter Green, Jonny Hannah, Mark Hearld, Michael Kirkman, Angie Lewin and Emily Sutton.
One of the delights of designing fabric is seeing what kind of life it has once it’s left the confines of the studio. Today I received a message from the brilliant designer Luke Edward Hall who sent me this picture of a shirt he made using my Lionheart fabric for the musician Patrick Wolf for his tour last year. The funny thing is I saw Patrick perform in Brighton last December. His soulful and beautifully wrought songs really hit the spot and since then he’s become a firm favourite to listen to in the studio.
On my walk to the studio this morning I came across this beautiful Victorian painted shop sign which had been uncovered by a painter and decorator working on the facade of a new coffee shop. He kindly allowed me to scale the scaffolding to photograph it before he covered it up again with a new sign. I’d love to know who R C Hallett was and what exactly it was they sold at 13 Lewes Road. A brief internet search revealed that an R C HaIlett now sells bicycles in Albuquerque, New Mexico. I wonder whether there’s a more interesting story to tell behind this sign?
On June the 16th, 1663 lightening struck the tower of St Michael and All Angels at Withyham, West Sussex. Fire swept through the church, melting the bells in the steeple and incinerating the many ancient monuments to the Earls and Dukes of Dorset and their descendants in the Sackville chapel. Since the 14th century generations of Sackvilles had been brought here from wherever they had died to rest among their kin. The church steward lamented to see 'such fine and stately monuments so suddenly turned to lime and ashes'. Following the fire funds were eventually raised to rebuild the church and family chapel. The new work was completed between 1672 and 1680.
It was in the midst of the rebuilding that tragedy struck. In 1675 whilst in Samur, France, Thomas Sackville the youngest son of the fifth Earl, died aged thirteen. Lord Dorset wrote in a letter to Sir John Bennett of the loss of 'my dear jewell here on earth and now a blessed angel and saint in heaven'. It had been his intention to erect a monument to his late son. Tragically he too would be dead in less that two years. It was left to Lady Dorset to commission a fitting memorial to her late husband and her dead children who numbered thirteen in total.
The Danish sculptor Caius Gabriel Cibber (1630-1700) was chosen to create the monument. Cibber had learned his craft in Italy and the Low Countries, eventually arriving in England in 1655. He is best known for his relief panel at the base of the Monument commemorating the Great Fire of London in 1666. The commission at Withyham was also to raise a striking memorial in the wake of fire. For a fee of £350 he was requested to create a work that was to be 'substantially rare and artificially performed' within the space of 10 months. Quite astonishingly he met the deadline of the demanding brief. He also succeeded in creating a masterpiece of late 17th century memorial sculpture.
Behind a low wrought iron screen the Duke and Duchess kneel, in silent and eternal grief at either side of the tomb of their son Thomas who lies with a skull in his hand - a symbol of premature death. Around the base of the raised tomb are representations of their twelve other children who also died in youth. The masterful rendering of the figures is astonishing and the effect theatrical and yet it is essentially a representation of private grief. The gazes of the Duke and Duchess are fixed inwards on their lost son who looks up towards the heavens. The chapel in which the monument sits is lofty with a large window yet it seems to be cloaked in darkness even on a bright day. The modern visitor to the church has to locate a light switch in order to illuminate the melancholy tableau - an act which seems to break the profound sense of sanctity surrounding this extraordinary monument.
Photographs by Ed Kluz