For Kai

photo: Alastair Grant

Kai arrived at The Rowley Gallery over 30 years ago, I can’t be sure of the exact date, but her name back then was Kathy. And to all who knew her in pre-Rowley days she always remained Kathy. But there was already another Cathy at The Rowley Gallery so she abbreviated her name to Ka. That was her Chinese name. But pronounced Kai, so that was how she spelt it thereafter. To avoid confusion. Continue reading “For Kai”

Frames of reference

Tewin & Back Again

Lower Green at Tewin, a pretty village midway between Welwyn and Hertford, 30 miles north of London and the perfect place for a circular countryside walk. We parked beside the green and just as I stepped out a football came flying past, but too quick for me to kick back, it continued into the road and lodged itself under our car. Which is why this picture appears so tranquil. The hectic to and fro momentarily interrupted. “Please mister, can we have our ball back?” Continue reading “Tewin & Back Again”

Frames of reference

In The Bleak Midwinter


A bright window packed with small beauties for these dark days, a fast-moving festive feast for the eyes. As works sell they will be replaced by more in an ongoing ever-changing pageant of delights.  Continue reading “In The Bleak Midwinter”

Frames of reference

To Win Green

Win Green From Berwick Down

We asked Howard Phipps to fill our window with a display of his wood engravings and linocuts. So it seemed like a good idea to go down and collect them, and take a walk around some of the places that had inspired them. We followed a circuit up to Win Green, a prominent landmark and the highest point in Cranborne Chase, crowned by a clump of beech trees on a Bronze Age bowl barrow. Continue reading “To Win Green”

Frames of reference

Ox Drove

I seem always to have been drawn to trees as a motif in the landscape, possibly because of their strong architectural forms. There are parallels as I am also interested in interior space, and as with interlinking rooms I find receding pathways compelling in the way the eye is taken through the picture plane. Continue reading “Ox Drove”

Frames of reference

A Short Walk With Howard Phipps

8bcba33fd3101d933ea9b4d90a308524

I’d been looking forward to this for years. Ever since we first had his wood engravings I’d been curious about where they came from. We usually get Howard’s prints in the post or occasionally he might bring us a few, but this time I was invited to go and collect some myself. It was an opportunity to visit his studio, to see how his wood engravings are made and also to discover the landscape that informs them. I left the A303 and followed the A30 down a dead straight Roman road to Stockbridge then along the old drover’s road towards Salisbury. I began to recognise the distinctive local features, the gentle rolling hills, the trees silhouetted against the sky, and I knew I was entering Phipps country. Continue reading “A Short Walk With Howard Phipps”

Frames of reference

The Arborealists

Arborealists poster a4

The Arborealists will stage their third exhibition at St Barbe Museum and Art gallery, Lymington, 23rd April – 4th June 2016, featuring new works by 35 artists. Each will show just one work to emphasise the diversity of art practice prevalent within the group – in terms of size, medium, style and philosophy. Continue reading “The Arborealists”

Frames of reference

Arboretum

Ivon-Hitchens-Oak-Tree-Purple-Woods-Southampton-City-Art-Gallery

Ivon Hitchens, Oak Tree in Purple Woods, Southampton City Art Gallery

In 2013 St Barbe Museum in Lymington organised an exhibition entitled Under the Greenwood: Picturing British Trees (accompanied by an impressive book published by Sansom). The exhibition was curated by Tim Craven of Southampton Art Gallery, himself a painter. Continue reading “Arboretum”

Frames of reference