Monday, 11 October 2010

Gingham, gorgeous frocks and Gaugin

Last week we made a cultural forage into the environs of Bermondsey and Southwark. First stop a little cafe opposite the Fashion and Textile Museum, as our eagerness had led us to arriving before the 11.00am opening time - but giving us the opportunity to revel in a Martin Parr-esque cup of tea.
Next, back across the road to FTM - to ogle at the delightful Horrockses frocks - and earwig the lovely old ladies going round talking about when they bought and wore their Horrockses in the 50s.

Finally we strolled past Southwark Cathedral and along the river to Tate Modern to see the Gaugin exhibition. An interesting challenge of an exhibition really. Obviously he has a few very famous, distinctive paintings (I am so familiar with Jacob Wrestling with the Angels that I can't really 'see' it as my Mum has had a reproduction of it in the house since the year dot - largely because she likes the red, I think). And is famous for not becoming painter until he was about 50 after a career in banking (or something). And having a bent nose. The exhibition is not a colourful fiesta of Breton/Tahitian inspired colour (the effect you get when you google Gaugin and click 'images'), but a darker look at the man - the 'maker of myth', by theme. There were a couple of paintings I liked but overall the thing that most hung together for me was the set of zincographs on yellow paper - like this one in the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston (the only visual reference I can find!) His use of line, black and tone is lovely.