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A Day Out
Friday, April 14, 2006
Yesterday I wrote 88 words.

Big round of applause please, people.

Thank you, thank you. Excuse me while I blush suitably for a moment.

Right. Why did I only write 88 words? Because I went out and did something cultured instead. I visited the Tate Liverpool!

For the uncultured amongst you, it's an art gallery. One of those places where they hang paintings by famous artists on the wall and have bits of tin cans and things on platforms with signs that read "Do Not Touch".

There's a story behind the visit, so I'm going to assume you're interested and tell you all about it.

Richard got into a bit of a discussion on a forum t'other day, when a woman said that Thomas Kinkaid was the original painter of light.

"Poppycock," declared Richard. "He's no such thing. The original painter of light is JMW Turner."

"Who's he?" replied the unknown woman.

Who's he? Who's he??? (For the best effect, this last line should be spoken in the same manner as Peter Kaye's 'Garlic Bread' catchphrase).

Honestly. Some people!

Anyway, this got us searching for Turner's work on t'Internet, during which we discovered that the Tate Liverpool were housing a display of his works until this coming Sunday 16th.

So we packed some egg sandwiches and a banana each, and headed for Liverpool.

The Turner exhibition was a huge disappointment. Only a handful of his major works were displayed and NOT the one I'd most wanted to see, Fisherman At Sea, even though it's owned by the Tate and the subject of the Tate Liverpool's exhibition was "Turner and The Sea". I was certain I was going to see it so you can no doubt understand my disappointment. They did, however, have Stormy Sea with Blazing Wreck, which is quite an interesting painting. I'm not sure it can be fully appreciated when viewed on a webpage, though, as there's so much detail to discover. Notice the dark figures on the shore in the bottom right hand corner? And the lobster pots, barrels etc with yet another onlooker in the bottom left hand corner? In the sea itself there are several ships that can be seen and a rescue boat coming into shore. Fascinating.

But back to the exhibition itself. The lighting was laughable and made viewing the paintings very difficult. Because the canvases are protected by glass, reflections from badly positioned spotlights obscured vast areas of the canvas making it impossible to view the entire scene regardless of which angle you viewed it from. And that wasn't just because I was sitting in a wheelchair, either. Richard had the same problem yet elsewhere in the gallery, where Henry Moore and Marie-Louise von Motesiczky were being exhibited, neither of us had a problem. I honestly would have expected better of The Tate!

Anyway, regardless of the Turner disappointment, we had an enjoyable afternoon in each other's company, something that happens far too seldom. Mostly work gets in the way of spending quality time together, or we have offspring and/or friends with us. It made a nice change.

Today I'm hoping for at least 500 words. It would have been nice with more but I've work to do and we're out tonight. We're going to see Jim Kirkpatrick do an acoustic set at a cosy little pub in Audlem, Shropshire. Should be nice :)


PS: For those of you who have no former knowledge of either Thomas Kinkaid or JMW Turner, please take a look at the following two links to decide for yourself who, of the two, is the true master of light. I won't really think you're a bunch of uncultured ignoramuses :)

Fishermen at Sea by JMW Turner

The Sea of Tranquillity
by Thomas Kinkaid

Or maybe you have a third option? If you do, please let me know about it.

Posted by Sharon J on 7:21 PM   

Anonymous Kate Hardy said...

Is that the same Turner exhibition that was at the London Tate? If so, it's a superb one and I hope you enjoyed it as much as I did. I fell in love with Whistler's Nocturnes - though I think he's the master of shadows rather than of light.

Tate Liverpool. Hmm. This must mean you're also near Port Sunlight and the Lady Lever art gallery, where I believe they have the original of my favourite painting of all time: Burne-Jones' "The Beguiling of Merlin". Go on. Make me jealous. Tell me you've seen it *g*

10:29 PM   

Anonymous Sharon J said...

No, Kate, sadly nowhere even close to the same exhibition. I haven't seen Whistler's Nocturnes but just looked it up on the Web. Beautiful :-)

I've been outside the Lady Lever but never inside. I'll have to put it on my list of places to visit this summer and report back to make you jealous, wicked woman that I am. Well, you have the beach!


11:21 PM   

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