Three artists well known to St Jude’s followers - Christopher Brown, Mark Hearld and Rob Ryan - are involved in a fund raising project for The House of Illustration, the UK’s only public gallery dedicated to illustration and the graphic arts, founded by Sir Quentin Blake and opened at the heart of King’s Cross in July 2014.
This weekend Sotheby’s will display First Editions: Re-covered, an exhibition of 33 unique first editions of classic books with beautiful original dust-jackets specially created and generously donated to House of Illustration by leading contemporary artists and designers.
Artists chose a book they felt a strong connection to and then created a new jacket, or artwork, in response to it: Maggie Hambling has created a cover for The Sea, The Sea by Iris Murdoch; Peter Blake responds to Alice Through the Looking Glass; Richard Wentworth has created a sculpture out of Zadie Smith’s White Teeth and Quentin Blake has created a cover for The Hunchback of Notre Dame by Victor Hugo.
After four days of public display the books and their wonderful dust-jackets will be auctioned to benefit House of Illustration at 7.30pm on Monday 11 December 2017 - you can view the auction lots on the Sotheby's website. The evening auction is held in partnership with Winsor & Newton. Find out more about the auction
We're delighted to announce the publication of our latest Random Spectacular project, The Lumber Room: Unimagined Treasures (RS011).
Prior to the reopening of York Art Gallery in 2015, Mark Hearld spent two years visiting the stores of the Yorkshire Museum and York Castle Museum as well as the Gallery researching the objects and artworks to include in his curated exhibition, The Lumber Room: Unimagined Treasures, which engaged visitors from August 2015 until May 2017.
His choices included pottery, costume, oil paintings, works on paper, furniture, and taxidermy, many items of which had not been on public display before.
Alongside these were new works that Mark has created especially for the show which is inspired by the collections.
The exhibition is influenced by a short story called The Lumber Room, by Saki, which was read to him in an English class when he was 15.
“Since I heard Saki’s story I have always been intrigued by the idea of a locked room that contained treasures so wonderful they are beyond what your mind can imagine. In this exhibition, I wanted to create the sense of excitement and wonder that you get when you discover the key to the room and see the “forbidden” objects for the first time.”
The exhibition closed early May 2017, but we’re delighted to publish this Random Spectacular journal which records and celebrates the spirit of Mark’s curation and creation with contributions from Emily Sutton, Chloë Cheese, Alan Powers, Jonathan Gibbs, Angie Lewin, John Andrews and many more.
Widely admired today as an illustrator and printmaker, Edward Bawden (1903-89) is hardly a ‘forgotten artist’. Yet one aspect of his career has been neglected until now: his role in the 1930s as a critically-acclaimed modern painter.
The Lost Watercolours of Edward Bawden sets the record straight by bringing together the largest collection of the artist’s pre-war watercolours ever assembled. Most were originally exhibited at one or other of Bawden’s major solo shows – at the Zwemmer Gallery in 1933 and the Leicester Galleries five years later – exhibitions that impressed critics and delighted collectors. Continues below...
It has taken three years to assemble this remarkable collection of pictures, many of which were, as the title of the book suggests, lost. The remarkable quest to find and identify Bawden’s pre-war watercolours is described by publisher Tim Mainstone in an amusing, informative essay, which forms the third part of this richly illustrated volume. James Russell, author of the popular series ‘Ravilious in Pictures’, contributes an introductory essay exploring Bawden’s life and career in the 1930s.
The watercolours themselves are grouped by exhibition, with additional sections of works from the mid-30s and from the decade’s end.
Manchester Metropolitan University's Special Collections are currently hosting an exhibition dedicated to the work of Rena Gardiner.
Rena Gardiner (1929-1999) spent her life entirely devoted to her art, creating books, prints and paintings. She is best known for a series of guidebooks to historic places, buildings and the countryside, each of which she wrote, printed and illustrated herself. This exhibition will include some of these guidebooks alongside paintings, pastels, linocuts and sketch-books and a display of work by some of the artists who influenced Rena including Eric Ravilious, John Piper and Edward Bawden.
The exhibition is based upon the book Rena Gardiner: Artist and Printmaker by Julian Francis and Martin Andrew, published by Little Toller Books in association with the Dovecote Press, 2015.
Rena Gardiner: Artist and Printmaker at MMU Special Collections runs until 18th November 2016. Visit their website for full details
Many thanks to everyone who joined us at Edinburgh Sculpture Workshop yesterday for the launch of Score Tae The Toor, a handmade book and remix CD inspired by the Concrete Antenna sound installation at Edinburgh Sculpture Workshop created by Simon Kirby, Tommy Perman and Rob St John and developed from our previous Concrete Antenna 12" vinyl/print package.
The trio gave a set of musicians access to their sound archive, tower instruments and compositions, and asked them to re-imagine the sited material created for the installation. Seven writers were asked to write pieces inspired by the tower and the installation, with pieces covering architecture, memory, archives, urban ecology and public art, written as essays, poetry and morse code.
Named after a phrase used by fishermen in the Firth of Forth using tall buildings on the Edinburgh skyline to orientate their sailing, Score Tae The Toor is a limited edition publication printed using a variety of techniques including risography, lithography, letterpress and computer controlled pen and knife plotters. Each cover features a unique numbered frame from an animation created by Tommy Perman.
Edward Bawden worked with London luxury provisions store Fortnum & Mason for a number years either side of World War II, designing many catalogues, menu cards, brochures and other ephemera.
Bawden's work for the store was captured in Mainstone Press' wonderful Entertaining À La Carte. Unfortunately this limited edition book sold out some time ago but copies can still be found online from time to time.
Here are a few seasonal images of Bawden's work for Fortnum & Mason.
This book is embellished with fine tipped-in samples illustrating the range of Baddeley Brothers’ print techniques, an anatomy of envelope design, a glossary of printing terminology, typographic designs by David Pearson, drawings by Lucinda Rogers and a fold-out map by Adam Dant.
Find our more about purchasing a copy of this wonderful publication.