Showing posts from April, 2013

Jerwood Gallery Hastings: William Scott - at last, an exhibition that Battleaxe likes!

What a fabulous bright day today. Flawless, crystal-bright blue sky. We visited the new William Scott exhibition at the Jerwood. 
     Called 'Divided Figure' it focuses on his drawings and paintings of the female form. Apparently this year is the centenary of his birth.
      This is the first Jerwood exhibition I have enjoyed viewing. Strange really, because much of Scott's work is just as abstract as the stuff in previous exhibitions. Don't ask me to try and explain why I get some pleasure out of this, and just felt confused irritation on viewing the others. Somewhere in there may lurk the difference between good modern art and bad modern art. The pictures shown here are just a random selection I found on the internet. Of course they don't let you take photographs in the gallery, and I couldn't be bothered to go through my usual routine of outwitting the attendants with a hidden iphone...
The picture of eggs and lemons was not on show, but I like the freshn…

Hastings Museum and Art Gallery....a night in the Museum. Birthplace of television?

As friends of the Hastings Museum and Art Gallery, we get invitations to exhibition openings and private views, so we decided to go to an event along last Friday. I don't think Battleaxe has ever blogged about the Museum - we do actually find ourselves wandering in there quite often, usually as part of a walk via Summerfields Woods. It is a pity it is so tucked away up Bohemia Road, because it has some lovely paintings and many interesting things. .
     The exhibition in question was a collection of paintings of Hastings Old Town by a nineteenth century artist, W.H. Brooke, and also by local artist E.Leslie Badham, who painted the Old Town in the 1920s, together with some up-to-date work by local students. The event was surprisingly busy, with many of the Hastings great and the good d'uncertain age, and lots of anxious students standing round videoing stuff on their phones and trying to look arty.  We peered earnestly at the pictures, drank a glass of wine and listened to th…

Rye - shopping with Battleaxe

Never mind all ye olde worlde cobbled streets and ancient stones, what we do in Rye is potter round the shops. Given our tastes, it will be a somewhat eccentric collection mentioned here.....
     We always follow the same route. First, we cruise the antique shops down by the quay. The big place on the corner, Quay Antiques, generally has nothing but tat, but today we found: a very kitsch 60s round chrome wine bottle holder, just right for a raffia chianti bottle, a nice 70s Hornsea tiger mug and an old terracotta garden statue of a fox - his ear is broken but he has personality and was only £15.00. There are a number of antique shops down there of varying expensiveness and interest - the vintage kitchenalia shop is good, but it has got too expensive.
     Had coffee in little gallery/coffee shop - I don't know what it is called. Every time we go in the woman is carefully spreading jam on a homemade sponge cake. Every time I say 'Is that going to be just jam, or will it have …

A Sunny Hastings day...West Hill, old military vehicles, dead Maggie Thatcher...

Sunshine....well there was, honestly - it was there on Sunday. Maggie Thatcher died yesterday - media in a frenzy of overblown adulation, Facebook in a frenzy of overblown loathing. Personally I can't get worked up about the death of a senile old woman - I quite fancy her Extra Care package at the Ritz, though.
     Back to Sunday - out we went, and walked across to the West Hill. We have found a lazy route which means not having to drop right down off our hill and have gut-busting climb all the way up again.  We meander through the streets of Clive Vale, cross the Old London Road where it joins Priory Road, and then cut down North Terrace, Halton, Bembrook Road, across the top of the open space. Views are fantastic.
      It is always a surprise to me to read that statistically, the Broomgrove and Farley Bank/Halton estates are in the most deprived 1% in the country. Coming from Birmingham, where there were some real shockers, and of course, having worked on Castle Vale, the Hast…

Hastings to Bexhill cycle path - cold walks

Well, the morning sun has streamed through my study window the last couple of days - I had to draw the curtain to keep it out. There have still been frosts, though, and it is very cold, with a continuous, bitter, icy wind.
     Yesterday we swaddled ourselves up for a  walk to Bexhill.  The fairly new cycle/pedestrian path from the end of the seafront to the Retail Park is a real design mess-up.  It is a great idea, and several cycle sale/hire places have opened up, presumably hoping for increased trade because of the new off-road route, but using the path is not good - and dangerous - for walkers, and must be ten times worse for cyclists.
      Much of the new route runs between the railway and the boulders heaped up to keep the sea at bay, and has to be shared between walkers and cyclists, with no demarcation between the two.  Walkers tend to either have dogs, be older, because it is flat, or families, because of the beach.  Many cyclists ride very fast, and think the path is thei…

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