Welcome to the Gallery

Imagine is set in the Suffolk village of Long Melford.
This is an attempt to record the daily trials, tribulation and pleasure of running an art gallery.

Thursday 22 July 2010

As predicted I came in today, looked again at yesterdays picture, disliked it and then spent
another half day changing it, this time a little more subtle [I think].
I will leave it now and come back to it after a day or so to see how I really feel about it,
if need be I will discard it and move on as there is obviously something that I am unhappy with.

Believe it or not the above short paragraph has taken 30 minutes to write.
Here in Long Melford we have a thunderstorm going on.
I know that in previous posts I have mentioned how quaint and old this part of England is,
indeed one of the attractions is that it is still about 20 years behind the rest of the world.
It is for that reason that we moved from the beautiful Cotswold's to live and work here, it still has a lot of the qualities, atmosphere and values that have disappeared from other regions.
It is stuck in its own little 'time warp'.
Especially when the weather is anything but mild.
Even light showers and a breeze can leave us without power for hours, and at home we have torches, candles and camping stoves on ready standby for most of the year.
I have lost count of the evenings that the family have played cards, 'eye spy' etc, by candle light.
We are talking about summer months not bleak January evenings, those days we huddle around the log fire trying to decide whose turn it is to fetch fresh wood from outdoors.
So to do a post in a summer storm!
What chance?
The more the power cut out the more determined I became to finish what I started.

So on borrowed time before the next lightning flash and power failure.

A good thing happened today, the potter John Bedding who lives and works in beautiful
St. Ives, Cornwall
sent me a few of his pots to gauge public reaction.
I have "booked" John for an exhibition next year, which is maybe a silly thing to do as we have never shown his work, but I love his pots so much I had to offer an exhibition.

In a strange way John is one of the reasons we are here today,

Many years ago and what seems like the someone else I was a potter, this was back in the days before 'Potters Fairs' and 'Ceramics this, that and the other',
which are now shown all over the country,
it was a time if you weren't selling in a gallery you weren't going to survive.
How it has changed.
All those years ago there was only one gallery to show in and that was the C.P.A.
"The Craftsmen Potters" shop, since re-titled for political reasons "Contemporary Ceramics".
As Jim Malone [potter] said to me recently, "in those days it meant something, you were regarded as one of the best potters in the country".

Back in those days my dream was to be accepted as a member,
and then to be allowed to show my work in their London gallery.
This did come to pass, as they say.
Like almost everything in life I have since come to understand that "politics" plays an important part, but then I was young, naive and enthusiastic.
But I didn't understand politics

So when much later I eventually decided to throw in the "potters" towel and get a proper job,
I vowed that I would never buy a pot again.

Fifteen years later while on holiday I found a pot in the window of a gallery in St. Ives,
I looked at it and fell in love with it over the duration of a week and on our last evening went inside and asked the owner could I purchase it.
The potter and owner of the gallery was John Bedding.
It was through him that I learned to love pots again.

I have never forgotten how John brought my focus back, and as a result is the reason we sell ceramics.
What could be more fitting than to have an exhibition of his work?

Above are pictures of his pots, including a detail picture.
I love them as much today as I did that day when I found "that one pot" that brought me back.


  1. So I think public opinion will be QUITE positive about John's work.. its great. The first two feel figurative with a dash of Japanese kimono in the work... LOVE them, love them all in fact... it will be an awesome show...

  2. It's strange that you should mention the Japanese kimono, when I
    looked at some of his recent work that is the thought that came to mind instantly. He has done some that really look as if they are patterned silk.
    I hope that they have a good response, for both our sakes.