Storms in Hastings.. Jerwood latest, WI Bazaar

Just about getting back to normal when I was hit by the WI Bazaar, followed by a night kept awake by Storm Angus roaring round the house, flinging rain at the windows with such force it sounded like barrow-loads of pebbles. Then, a visit to the current exhibitions at the Jerwood, which Battleaxe recommends....

Stormy skies from the Jerwood Cafe
     The annual WI Winter Bazaar is a big event in our calendar. I've written about it, and the amazing commitment of the WI women,  before. As ever, I did the bric-a-brac stall, this year adding toys to the empire. Philosopher helped as well, lugging boxes and clothes rails from our store room down in the Old Town, and then down to the hall and back.
     We were thinking, for just how many years, and from how many store rooms, have we done this? In Birmingham, I had a store room for the retro shop, and after the shop was sold, we did many vintage fairs etc. One day I'll do a blog post about the shop, Retro Bizarre.
     As usual, I was so impressed with the way the WI women mucked in and helped - we are truly an amazing force. I don't know what it is about the WI which makes people join in so readily. Folk are so creative too - made lovely things to sell. However, I don't think the event was quite as lucrative as other years, because there were a number of competing events round the town, but it will still have done well.
     Here is Digby with his new handmade cat toy.

     Storm Angus promised much, sounded impressive, but fortunately, delivered little in the way of damage. We just lost one bit of trellis, and a few plant pots were toppled.
     In the morning we went down to admire the waves. The wind practically blew us over and it was bitterly cold.

Aftermath of Storm Angus
     We went into the Jerwood to warm up, and after coffee, viewed the current exhibitions. There is a small room devoted to Stanley Spencer, but the bulk of the gallery has been reorganised to accommodate a joint exhibition with the Ingram Collection, which mostly lives in the Lightbox in Woking.
     Chris Ingram, who founded the collection, made his money from advertising. He only started collecting in 2001 and has accumulated a tasteful, creative and interesting collection of twentieth-century art - bigger and more varied than the Jerwood collection.There were many lovely things on show, and full marks to the Jerwood, the walls of all the rooms were full, and there was plenty to look at. It is so much better than having expanses of bare space. People who have to pay to get in really need to feel that they are getting value for money. We do have to pay as well of course, but we are members, which means we don't cough up every time - it feels like it is free....
     Anyway, it is a very good exhibition and well worth a visit. Battleaxe recommends.  For any Hastingas who still have not ventured through the gallery door, this would be a good starting point.
     Some of the Jerwood works on display we have seen over and over again - in fact, they are pretty much always out.... Christopher Wood woman in a bathing costume. View from window at Ditchling by Frank Brangwyn... Why not get out some different ones from the store?
     There were some things I particularly liked. All the pictures below are from the Ingram Collection, and all photos raided from the internet. I don't mind raiding the photos, because Ingram is clearly very generous about sharing his pictures - he takes them to schools and community groups as well as lending them to galleries. In the introduction to the collection catalogue, he says:
       'I want the pictures and sculptures in my collection to be seen. I want other people to enjoy them too. I think it is scandalous that some of our national collections contain works by outstanding artists that have not been on show for thirty to forty years.'
      I do so agree, Chris!
      Talking of catalogues, Ingram has a truly excellent, complete, illustrated catalogue of all their items, now running into two volumes - for sale in the Jerwood for a fiver each volume.
      Jerwood! Get yourself a proper catalogue of your collection!
      This Edward Burra, 'Near Whitby', invokes Yorkshire on a wet day, and I always like receding road pictures, travelling to....where?
Edward Burra - Near Whitby
 The Ruskin Spear cat picture is just so typically catty - look at the wicked glint in his eye. That vase is going to be knocked over any moment....

Ruskin Spear - Curious Cat
     The Laura Knight is not of Sennen Cove in Cornwall, but could well be - those rollers sweeping in across the bay...
Laura Knight - Sea and Rocks
Saturday night at the Local, William Roberts

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