Programme Membership year 2019/20 27th November 2019    Aliki Braine     Same Old, Same New… You might think it's easy to spot the difference between contemporary and historical art, but how about what they have in common? Can old masters help us understand works such as 'the pile of bricks' and 'the unmade bed'? This lecture explores whether the old masters can help us understand modern works, and whether artists' intentions and strategies have really changed across the centuries. 22nd January 2020    Evelyn Silber    A Risky Business - marketing modern art early 20th century London George Bernard Shaw during his early spell as an art critic, advised an artist friend ‘Unless you can say, “This is the very thing for your splendid dining room” you have no chance. That is why it is more important to dine out than to study painting.”  Only a handful of bold London dealers in the pre-1945 period persisted. Picasso’s first one man show in London was a commercial disaster though that of Matisse in the same gallery had a been a huge success. This talk abounds in incidents of outrage, hilarity and adventurous collecting. 26th February  2020 Chantal Brotherton-Ratcliffe     Raphael, a god amongst painters [Raphael 500 year centenary] Raphael’s is one of the most famous names in art history, and until the late 19th century to emulate him was the goal for most artists succeeding him. Yet today he is not as well known as this might suggest. Is this because his biography is less dramatic than Caravaggio’s? or his career less tormented than Michelangelo’s? or is it because his qualities are difficult to define - the elusive qualities of grace, harmony and idealised beauty. This lecture asks “what is the magic of Raphael?” It takes a fresh look at Raphael, exploring what he achieved, and looking, as if for the first time, at the beauty and grace of his work. It will examine his astonishing ability to grow and transform himself over the years of his career, and whose tragically early death leaves us wondering – had he lived, what would have come next? The Portrait of a Young Woman (also known as La fornarina) between 1518 and 1519. Click here to find out more about Paphael 25th March 2020 Ian Cockburn     Moorish Architecture: The Legacy of a Vanished Kingdom The Alhambra of Granada, the Great Mosque of Cordoba and the Alcazar of Seville are the three most impressive monuments to the architectural creativity of the Moors in Spain, but there are many other examples worthy of mention too. The classical origins that influenced the Moorish style are less well- known, but fascinating to explore, as too is the unique interior decorative style developed by the Moors, which gives their architecture its beauty and exotic appeal – an appeal so strong that the Christians sometimes copied it, even as they slowly reconquered the territory from its Islamic rulers. This lecture provides a comprehensive introduction to the peninsula’s Moorish architecture. Alhambra Generalife fountains by Andrew Dunn, www.andrewdunnphoto.com 22nd April    Nicholas Merchant     Eileen Gray, an Irish Rebel Imagine, late 19th century Southern Ireland, a young  girl of “good family”, living in an 18th century mansion, a tranquil rural existence. It sounds idyllic, the sort of life colour supplements write about with floods of purple prose. This was the life of the subject of this lecture, as the 19th century drew to its close. In 1900 Eileen’s Mother took her to the Exposition Universelle in Paris, and as the saying goes “she never looked back”. An imaginative, and determined girl, Eileen was determined not to see Enniscorthy again. She enrolled in the Slade School of Art, progressed to learn the true art of lacquer in Paris and after the First War became one of Paris’s most recherché and sought-after designers. Not for her the stuffed Victorian furniture of her home but for her, what we now call, “cutting- edge” design. In her studio in the rue Bonaparte she created works which rivalled all the great 20th century furniture makers of Paris. The Art Deco Exhibition of 1925 was the turning point of her life, and the world became aware of her. Ever restless, she built in the late 20’s an extraordinary house at Roquebrunne which became the envy of one of the best- known architects of the period, Le Corbusier. This is a fascinating story of the girl from Enniscorthy, who became one of the most innovative designers of the 20th century. Le salon de verre (Glass Salon) designed by Paul Ruaud with furniture by Eileen Gray, Paris, c, 1910-22 Click here to find out more about Eileen Gray 27th May     Rupert Willoughby     Threads of History: The World of the Bayeux Tapestry Commissioned by the Bishop of Bayeux who fought at Hastings, executed by skilled English craftsmen, the Bayeux Tapestry is the last survivor of a vanished art form. Rupert Willoughby presents a lively introduction to the tapestry – so much more than the story of Hastings – in which he unravels some of its mysteries, places it in the context of its age and firmly establishes it as a landmark in the history of Western art. With its lively illustrations of languid, party-loving, moustachioed Englishmen, of the cavalcades of noble huntsmen and of the snorting Norman cavalry poised to charge into battle, the Tapestry is the next best thing to a moving picture  from the time. Click here to find out more about the Bayeux Tapestry 24th June Mark Ovenden    150 years of London Underground Design Covers surprising attempts to create some graphic unity, even in the 1860s and 70s, expansion of the Underground and the need to create some cohesion between the different operating companies, Leslie Green's architecture and the Arts & Crafts movement, Frank Pick, Edward Johnston's typeface, Charles Holden's architecture and the Streamline Moderne/Art Deco movement, the New Works Programme, post war austerity/design, Victoria Line, loss of Johnston & rescue by Kono, Jubilee Line Extension/architecture, creation of TfL, recent schemes and future works including the Elizabeth Line/Northern Line extension to Battersea etc. Click here for examples of more posters There are no lectures in July and August 22nd July (Social)    Timothy Walker    The Use and Role of Colour in English Garden Design An activity that we would recognise as gardening has its origins 10,500 years ago in the transition from nomadic hunting and gathering to a sedentary life-style that culminated in the dominance of an agricultural society. Before this our ancestors had already begun creating art in the rocks and in caves. The point at which gardening-to-stay alive was joined by gardening-as-art is unclear. Theophrastus cultivated plants more than 2,300 years ago so that he could study them more conveniently. Sri Lankans created gardens in honour of the god of water 1,500 years ago. It is probable that it was within this religious paradigm that the layout of gardens and the selection and juxtaposition of the plants, was first considered to be important. At some point considerations already familiar to fine artists, such as harmony and contrast, started to come into play, but Nature is a fickle palette. These are not “lifeless pools of paint on a palette” (Jekyll 1888) but living organisms with their own agendas, with the result that a garden can be ephemeral and uncontrolled. The creation and use of new pigments, dyes, and media is analogous to the introduction and cultivation of new plants. While the utility of gardening persists, gardens are also created to reflect philosophical ideas and provoke emotional responses.  As we enter the period known known now as the anthropocene, do gardens have a new role to play in addition to their utility and their art? 23rd September     Helen Ritchie     Making Visions: the jewellery of artist Charles Ricketts An in-depth look at the unique jewellery created by flamboyant artist Charles Ricketts at the turn of the twentieth century. His intricate and richly-enamelled neo-Renaissance pieces were designed as gifts for his many friends including May Morris and the fascinating couple known as Michael Field. This is the last lecture in the 2019/20 membership year.
Web site  and mobile phone pages designed, created and maintained by Janet Groome, Handshake Computer Training
The Arts Society Leicester
Membership year 2019/20   27th November 2019     Aliki Braine      Same Old, Same New…  You might think it's easy to spot the difference between contemporary and historical art, but how about what they have in common? Can old masters help us understand works such as 'the pile of bricks' and 'the unmade bed'? This lecture explores whether the old masters can help us understand modern works, and whether artists' intentions and strategies have really changed across the centuries.   22nd January 2020     Evelyn Silber     A Risky Business - marketing modern art early 20th century London  George Bernard Shaw during his early spell as an art critic, advised an artist friend ‘Unless you can say, “This is the very thing for your splendid dining room” you have no chance. That is why it is more important to dine out than to study painting.  Only a handful of bold London dealers in the pre-1945 period persisted. Picasso’s first one man show in London was a commercial disaster though that of Matisse in the same gallery had a been a huge success. This talk abounds in incidents of outrage, hilarity and adventurous collecting.   26th February  2020 Chantal Brotherton-Ratcliffe      Raphael, a god amongst painters [Raphael 500 year centenary]  Raphael’s is one of the most famous names in art history, and until the late 19th century to emulate him was the goal for most artists succeeding him. Yet today he is not as well known as this might suggest. Is this because his biography is less dramatic than Caravaggio’s? or his career less tormented than Michelangelo’s? or is it because his qualities are difficult to define - the elusive qualities of grace, harmony and idealised beauty.  This lecture asks “what is the magic of Raphael?” It takes a fresh look at Raphael, exploring what he achieved, and looking, as if for the first time, at the beauty and grace of his work. It will examine his astonishing ability to grow and transform himself over the years of his career, and whose tragically early death leaves us wondering – had he lived, what would have come next?  The Portrait of a Young Woman (also known as La fornarina) between 1518 and 1519.  Click here to find out more about Paphael   25th March 2020 Ian Cockburn      Moorish Architecture: The Legacy of a Vanished Kingdom  The Alhambra of Granada, the Great Mosque of Cordoba and the Alcazar of Seville are the three most impressive monuments to the architectural creativity of the Moors in Spain, but there are many other examples worthy of mention too.  The classical origins that influenced the Moorish style are less well-known, but fascinating to explore, as too is the unique interior decorative style developed by the Moors, which gives their architecture its beauty and exotic appeal – an appeal so strong that the Christians sometimes copied it, even as they slowly reconquered the territory from its Islamic rulers. This lecture provides a comprehensive introduction to the peninsula’s Moorish architecture.  Alhambra Generalife fountains by Andrew Dunn, www.andrewdunnphoto.com  22nd April     Nicholas Merchant      Eileen Gray, an Irish Rebel  Imagine, late 19th century Southern Ireland, a young girl of “good family”, living in an 18th century mansion, a tranquil rural existence. It sounds idyllic, the sort of life colour supplements write about with floods of purple prose. This was the life of the subject of this lecture, as the 19th century drew to its close. In 1900 Eileen’s Mother took her to the Exposition Universelle in Paris, and as the saying goes “she never looked back”. An imaginative, and determined girl, Eileen was determined not to see Enniscorthy again.   She enrolled in the Slade School of Art, progressed to learn the true art of lacquer in Paris and after the First War became one of Paris’s most recherché and sought-after designers.   Not for her the stuffed Victorian furniture of her home but for her, what we now call, “cutting-edge” design. In her studio in the rue Bonaparte she created works which rivalled all the great 20th century furniture makers of Paris. The Art Deco Exhibition of 1925 was the turning point of her life, and the world became aware of her. Ever restless, she built in the late 20’s an extraordinary house at Roquebrunne which became the envy of one of the best- known architects of the period, Le Corbusier. This is a fascinating story of the girl from Enniscorthy, who became one of the most innovative designers of the 20th century.  Le salon de verre (Glass Salon) designed by Paul Ruaud with furniture by Eileen Gray, Paris, c, 1910-22  Click here to find out more about Eileen Gray    27th May      Rupert Willoughby      Threads of History: The World of the Bayeux Tapestry  Commissioned by the Bishop of Bayeux who fought at Hastings, executed by skilled English craftsmen, the Bayeux Tapestry is the last survivor of a vanished art form. Rupert Willoughby presents a lively introduction to the tapestry – so much more than the story of Hastings – in which he unravels some of its mysteries, places it in the context of its age and firmly establishes it as a landmark in the history of Western art. With its lively illustrations of languid, party-loving, moustachioed Englishmen, of the cavalcades of noble huntsmen and of the snorting Norman cavalry poised to charge into battle, the Tapestry is the next best thing to a moving picture from the time.   Click here to find out more about the Bayeux Tapestry   24th June Mark Ovenden     150 years of London Underground Design  Covers surprising attempts to create some graphic unity, even in the 1860s and 70s, expansion of the Underground and the need to create some cohesion between the different operating companies, Leslie Green's architecture and the Arts & Crafts movement, Frank Pick, Edward Johnston's typeface, Charles Holden's architecture and the Streamline Moderne/Art Deco movement, the New Works Programme, post war austerity/design, Victoria Line, loss of Johnston & rescue by Kono, Jubilee Line Extension/architecture, creation of TfL, recent schemes and future works including the Elizabeth Line/Northern Line extension to Battersea etc.  Click here for examples of more posters   There are no lectures in July and August   22nd July (Social)     Timothy Walker     The Use and Role of Colour in English Garden Design  An activity that we would recognise as gardening has its origins 10,500 years ago in the transition from nomadic hunting and gathering to a sedentary life-style that culminated in the dominance of an agricultural society. Before this our ancestors had already begun creating art in the rocks and in caves. The point at which gardening-to-stay alive was joined by gardening-as-art is unclear. Theophrastus cultivated plants more than 2,300 years ago so that he could study them more conveniently. Sri Lankans created gardens in honour of the god of water 1,500 years ago. It is probable that it was within this religious paradigm that the layout of gardens and the selection and juxtaposition of the plants, was first considered to be important.   At some point considerations already familiar to fine artists, such as harmony and contrast, started to come into play, but Nature is a fickle palette. These are not “lifeless pools of paint on a palette” (Jekyll 1888) but living organisms with their own agendas, with the result that a garden can be ephemeral and uncontrolled. The creation and use of new pigments, dyes, and media is analogous to the introduction and cultivation of new plants. While the utility of gardening persists, gardens are also created to reflect philosophical ideas and provoke emotional responses.  As we enter the period known known now as the anthropocene, do gardens have a new role to play in addition to their utility and their art?   23rd September      Helen Ritchie      Making Visions: the jewellery of artist Charles Ricketts  An in-depth look at the unique jewellery created by flamboyant artist Charles Ricketts at the turn of the twentieth century. His intricate and richly-enamelled neo-Renaissance pieces were designed as gifts for his many friends including May Morris and the fascinating couple known as Michael Field.  This is the last lecture in the 2019/20 membership year.
Web site and mobile phone pages designed, created and maintained by Janet Groome, Handshake Computer Training