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.

Wednesday, 1 September 2010

Can I do a quick post?
That's what I have been thinking for the last two days, the answer I told myself was NO.
Right then, that means no posts this week as I am too busy.

Oh! to hell with it, I will try and do a short one,
Trouble is when you have a big mouth and an active mind things tend to go on a bit.

See what I mean.
I am writing garbage and I haven't told you anything.
So, here we go very, very briefly.

At the moment I am embroiled [up to my eyes] with trying to set up the new exhibition,
and as usual it is getting on top of me.
The art seems to have a life of its own and dictates what I should do, I keep thinking "no, I haven't time to do that", then something tells me "you had better do it" even if it takes time.
The usual exhibition setting up scenario really, I should be used to it by now, but I ever will be.

Still, I wouldn't be in this position if I hadn't collected the different art,
and that is where I have been for the last few days.
Driving, and collecting art.
If I had unlimited time [and a petrol allowance] this would be a pleasure.
In fact it is, but I never seem to have enough time to savour the visits and enjoy the company of the clever people, and to spend the time talking with them that I would dearly love to.
I am sorry if I appear rude to them, it is worry not intention.

So in brief, this is a snapshot of my latest adventure.
I travelled during the early hours of the morning to the west coast of Wales to see and collect paintings from Jackie Morris.
Travelling so early made the journey easy and by 10 a.m. I was at the Pembrokeshire coast.
It was so different from what I had left behind that I spent an hour or so [probably so] before
I drove to Jackie's beautiful remote cottage.

I will now leave out a lot of my adventures because at some point this evening I would like to get home, so here I will have to omit several hours that I enjoyed but you will never know of.
What a tease I am.

Jackie had promised to take me to see the new born Seal cubs at a secret deserted cove.
I was really excited about this. Did they really exist? It was such an unusual event I couldn't believe that it would really happen.
Of course, true to her word Jackie and her son Tom took me off over the hills [and far away]
until eventually we were standing in a remote spot, high above the sea.
Looking far down amongst the rocks on a deserted cove I was able to witness for the first time in my life, baby Seal cubs.
White, scattered amongst and blending with the surrounding rocks.
What a privilege.
After a while Jackie started to point out to me different darker rocks, but they weren't rocks, they were adult Seals.
The more I looked the more I saw.
On the beach and in the sea, playing, fighting, mating.
"Did you here that"? Jackie asked.
I had, but didn't know what it was, a sound like a horn.
Sad, and very moving.
The song of the Seal.
I won't tell more of that short visit but to say that it was magical would be an understatement.

I slept that night beside the sea.
My bed and bathroom were yet again created by nature.

The following day was to be full of panic urgency and many hours of driving.
A far cry from the songs of Seals.

I had chosen a holiday weekend to do my travelling, which reminds me I must plan ahead in the future.
[Hey! Lorell. How long will it take me to drive to Australia next Autumn?]
So, with a car packed fully with Jackie's paintings I set off for my next visit to the sculptor
Amanda Popham.
Amanda lives in a beautiful deserted part of Somerset, a location that any other time I would loved to have visited.
But, not that day.
After many, many hours of driving, experiencing hours of "traffic jams" I arrived at her hilltop
But not for long.
Ten minutes, and a very quick chat with Amanda and I "was gone".
Over the many hills, plains, valleys and even past 'Stonehenge' I headed East back home.
After eleven hours I arrived there, to be greeted by two beautiful excited dogs, waiting at the gate. What a lovely homecoming.

If I have the chance I will return to my visit and tell you of many of the incredible things that I saw and encountered, but until that day here are just a few of my memories and examples of the art I collected and returned home with.

Firstly, if you can spot them the Seal Cubs.
The view from my bedroom [car seat] towards my bathroom,
just before I switched off the lights.
The rest a few of Amanda's sculptures. Believe me these have to be seen [and held] to appreciate, I haven't had pieces like this that have so excited me for a long time.
Well, in fact the last time we showed her work.


  1. Wonderful description of your weekend. I must admit I never knew that gallery dealers actually collected the art from the artists, always thought it was the other way round.

    Love the sculptures by Amanda Popham, I think I really need to visit your gallery the next time I am in England.

  2. At first I wondered why you were posting an image of a scattering of rocks - until I looked more closely, of course, so sweet and nicely hidden. And to hear the song of the seals... well, magic indeed!

    Hope all goes well with the show installation - and, in response to
    happyjaqui's comment above, I've never had a gallery director pick up my work, I am usually driving into the big city, paying for parking or lugging a bunch of work from some distant parking spot trying to still look somewhat professional when I get to the gallery!

  3. Thank you both for your comments.
    They are appreciated, most of the time I think I am writing to myself.

    I can here my wife saying "you talk to yourself, so why not write as well"?

    You must both one day try and visit, it would be so lovely to put faces to your names.

    Regarding your comments about collecting the different works, until recently I thought that all galleries did this.
    If they don't they have missed out on a lot of pleasure and friendship.
    Their loss, and my gain.

    I must admit Valerianna that it has run through my mind many times
    "how am I going to visit her".
    But it will happen.
    I'm sure.
    I need to visit the different artists so that I can tell the customers
    about them [the artist], their studios and their lives.
    I see the faces of people when I am talking to them about an artist.
    They smile, and they are happy because they think that they have taken a little of the 'magic' that goes with a piece of art.
    I am thrilled to be able to do this, but feel even more lucky that I had met these people, experienced these things and had a glimpse of their life.
    How many people can be as lucky as me?
    To not collect the works is something I can't imagine.
    Mind you, I'm not going to Australia to collect Lorell Lehman's work next fall.
    Much as I would love to. This time the mountain will have to come to "JOHN".

  4. "The Song Of The Seal" What a great title to imagine a story around. Hmmmmm.

    You've been investing your time in building bridges with "your artists" -- yes, it's hard work, but what goes around comes around, as you well know. What raises your gallery a cut above the rest is "the personal touch" -- in your dealings with your artists, and with the people who buy their art. When you pick up an artist's pieces, some of their magic rubs off on you, and when you sell the pieces, you make sure the magic rubs off on the people who have bought them as well.