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Posts under ‘On art’

I am a keen looker at art: not, I think, a connoisseur, nor an ignoramus. Definitely not a practitioner. I am keen on the British tradition in art, and perhaps especially the development of a civilised Modernism (as opposed to dogmatic Modernism).

Hobo’s 79th Armoured Division insignia

Posted by RDN under Military Covenant / On art / On books on 28 August 2014. No comments.

This is the famous insignia of the 79th Armoured Division. It seems very likely that, like the 79th itself, it was designed by General Percy Hobart (Sir Percy, as he became). If so, he was as creative with a pencil as with his military planning. He was certainly close friends with writers and artists, including Eric Kennington, one of the best war artists of WW1 and WW2.

The Bull's Head insignia of the 79th Armoured Division

The Bull’s Head insignia of the 79th Armoured Division

For more on this story, see below…

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Stanley Kennedy North: Medieval homages, c1920s

Posted by RDN under On art on 27 August 2014. No comments.

skn illumination colour adj 2

Stanley North, or Stanley Kennedy North (and sometimes, as below in the carol work, Kennedy North) as he became on his marriage to Helen Kennedy (his second wife), was a strikingly modern illustrator but almost as much a passionate medievalist – as we see in various images in the rest of this page.

The image below is a detail from SKN’s triptych for the Royal Academy of Music, which best described at the RAM’s online museum and best seen at the BBC/PCF site.

SKN's Royal Academy of Music tribute to Tobias Matthay, detail

SKN’s Royal Academy of Music tribute to Tobias Matthay, detail

Moving on to other rather similar Stanley North medievalist offerings, see below… More »

Stanley Kennedy North folk dance book, 1921

Posted by RDN under On art / On books on 27 August 2014. No comments.

Stanley North, by then calling himself Stanley Kennedy North, in recognition of his marriage to Helen Kennedy, illustrated and (presumably) produced this marvellous little book, Mr North’s Maggot (so called after a folk dance formulation). It is dedicated to Helen and has a foreword by Cecil Sharp, the great revivalist (and preserver) of the form and founder of the English Folk Dance and Song Society.

Here are two galleries of SKN’s Maggot. The first has smallish images and alterates the illustrations with related scraps of lyric:

  • SKN Folk front cover_thumb68
  • SKN Folk front cover
  • SKN Folk Confess_1
  • SKN Folk facing Confess_1
  • SKN Folk Constant Billy_2
  • SKN Folk facing Constant Billy_2
  • SKN Folk Earsdon Sword Dance_3
  • SKN Folk facing Earsdon Sword Dance_3
  • SKN Folk Gathering Peascods_4
  • SKN Folk facing Gathering Peascods_4
  • SKN Folk I Will Go And Enlist_5
  • SKN Folk facing I Will Go And Enlist_5
  • SKN Folk Kirkby Sword Dance_6
  • SKN Folk facing Kirkby Sword Dance_6
  • SKN Folk Oranges and Lemons_7
  • SKN Folk facing Oranges And Lemons_7
  • SKN Folk Parsons Farewell_8
  • SKN Folk facing Parsons Farewell_8
  • SKN Folk Picking Up Sticks_9
  • SKN Folk facing Picking Up Sticks_9
  • SKN Folk Rigs O Marlow_10
  • SKN Folk facing Rigs O Marlow_10
  • SKN Folk Shepherds Holday_11
  • SKN Folk facing Shepherds Holiday_11
  • SKN Folk The Rose_12
  • SKN Folk facing The Rose_12
  • SKN Folk Cecil Sharp foreword_21
  • SKN Folk Beamont & Hetcher_22
  • SKN Folk Helen dedication_23
  • SKN Folk Peacham note_24
  • SKN Folk reverse front cover_25
  • SKN Folk verso sheet_resize_20
  • SKN Folk back cover_19

The second has larger, cropped images, and text and illustrations are unsorted:

  • SKN Folk front cover_thumb21
  • SKN Folk facing Constant Billy_resize37
  • SKN Folk facing The Rose
  • SKN Folk front cover_thumb33
  • SKN Folk front cover24
  • SKN Folk facing Rigs O Marlow
  • SKN Folk facing Shepherds Holiday
  • SKN Folk facing Parsons Farewell49
  • SKN Folk facing Picking Up Sticks
  • SKN Folk facing Kirkby Sword Dance
  • SKN Folk facing Oranges And Lemons
  • SKN Folk facing Gathering Peascods
  • SKN Folk facing I Will Go And Enlist
  • SKN Folk facing Earsdon Sword Dance
  • SKN Folk facing Confess
  • SKN Folk facing Constant Billy
  • SKN Folk Earsdon Sword Dance
  • SKN Folk dedication
  • SKN Folk back cover
  • SKN Folk dedication reverse
  • SKN Folk Confess
  • SKN Folk Gathering Peascods
  • SKN Folk I Will Go And Enlist
  • SKN Folk Kirkby Sword Dance
  • SKN Folk Oranges and Lemons
  • SKN Folk Parsons Farewell
  • SKN Folk Peacham note
  • SKN Folk Peacham note reverse
  • SKN Folk reverse front cover
  • SKN Folk reverse of facing Gathering Surely...
  • SKN Folk Picking Up Sticks
  • SKN Folk Rigs O Marlow
  • SKN Folk Shepherds Holday
  • SKN Folk The Rose
  • SKN Folk verso sheet

Stanley North WW1 “Child’s ABC”, 1914

Posted by RDN under Military Covenant / On art / On books on 25 August 2014. No comments.

Sometime during the autumn of 1914 (I am presuming), my grandfather, Stanley North produced these marvellous images to illustrate Geoffrey Whitworth’s “Child’s ABC of the War”. It was in the spirit of much of the artistic and literary response to the declaration of war.

Here is a gallery of the complete work…

  • SKN ABC T_thumbnail
  • SKN ABC A_resize
  • SKN ABC B_resize
  • SKN ABC C_resize
  • SKN ABC D2_resize
  • SKN ABC E_resize
  • SKN ABC F_resize
  • SKN ABC G_resize
  • SKN ABC H_resize
  • SKN ABC I_resize
  • SKN ABC J_resize
  • SKN ABC K_resize
  • SKN ABC L_resize
  • SKN ABC M_resize
  • SKN ABC N_resize
  • SKN ABC O_resize
  • SKN ABC P_resize
  • SKN ABC Q_resize
  • SKN ABC R_resize
  • SKN ABC S_resize
  • SKN ABC T_resize
  • SKN ABC U_resize
  • SKN ABC V_resize
  • SKN ABC W_resize
  • SKN ABC X_resize
  • SKN ABC Y_resize
  • SKN ABC Z_resize
  • SKN ABC cover_resize
  • SKN ABC dedication_resize
  • SKN ABC envoy Paul_resize
  • SKN ABC T_resize and cropped

79th Armoured Div souvenir, 1945

Posted by RDN under Military Covenant / On art on 25 August 2014. No comments.

Gillian Parnell came across this remarkable cigarette box, presumably made in Hamburg in 1945 by or for the 79th Armoured Division. As of 25 August 2014, she has it on sale at eBay. Pix below…. More »

Loving the fake (#2 of 2): Human zoos

Posted by RDN under Mind & body / On art / On theatre / Politics & campaigns on 24 April 2014. No comments.

I love the “problem” of tourism and – most sharply – the problem of the “human zoo”. Almost all our travel, at least where it involves looking at people rather than landscape or animals, has a dimension of anthropological voyeurism. Much of it is a matter of play-acting amongst imagined peasantries or primitives. This has now reached new heights of self-consciousness, and is blissfully funny as well as serious…. More »

Loving the fake (#1 of 2): Digital rip-offs

Posted by RDN under Mind & body / On art on 24 April 2014. No comments.

I love the idea of fake art in the age of digital rip-offs. To put it in grander terms, I love the “issue” of conservation – facsimile, and reproduction, actually – in an age of mass culture and digitalisation. (In my next blog, I want to riff in rather the same way about the modern issue of tourism and anthropology, flowing from Human Zoo tourism.) We have entered a wonderful time in which re-envisioning, for instance, Tutankhamun, Seti I and and Piranesi fairly make the mind explode with potential. I explore some of this below the fold:

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Jamini Roy: BBC stuck in anti-colonialism

Posted by RDN under Mind & body / On art on 6 March 2014. No comments.

I have been listening to an interesting show, From Bengal to Baker Street, about the Indian painter Jamini Roy. Poor old Radio 4 couldn’t get beyond its anti-colonial meta-narrative… More »

Lovely WW1 (and other) horse art

Posted by RDN under On art on 6 March 2014. No comments.

The St Barbe Museum and Art Gallery in Lymington always boxes above its weight and its current show, “Home Lad Home, the War Horse story” is no exception. It isn’t an enormous display, but it is very moving on several counts, and not least its beauty and – more surprisingly – its positivity. This show and the fine town which houses the gallery make a wonderful away-day. More »

Brutalism: Big it up for Meades

Posted by RDN under Mind & body / On art / On TV & Radio on 26 February 2014. No comments.

Jonathan Meades is a vital figure, a sort of a Christopher Hitchens for architecture, with a dash of Ian Nairn, but considerable wallops of Suggsy, and a undertone of some late 18th Century person (wonderful to think it might be JM’s admired Burke himself). I very much approve his appreciation of Brutalism, though I would go further and wider…. More »

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