MESSUM'S GALLERY, Cork Street
|Devon - Winter View from the Artist's Studio.|
The catalogue contains an anecdote about how, through a network of mutual friends and acquaintances, John Berger made an impromptu visit to the artist's house and examined some of his unfinished landscapes.. John Berger is distinguished in many areas, but his four-part series of 30-minute films in 1972 led to a book Ways of Seeing, a classic text which profoundly altered the way many of us looked at pictures. Berger's reaction to Cotton's work was to encourage him to paint exclusively with a knife as he believed Alan had 'a real feel for using paint'.
|Devon - Dazzling Light at Hartland|
It makes an interesting contrast to Michael Kidd's style of painting featured in Blog 304 The Calm Before. In each of the works rows of 'battlements' point out to sea, but Kidd paints a serene beach, each pebble in its place, the silvery turquoise sea apparently in a moment of torpor and the groynes like guns pointing downwards with military precision.
Alan Cotton's work is not confined to beloved Hartland, in Devon, but includes Provence, Piemonte, Venice, Sicily, Cyprus, Morocco, Ireland and Everest. On the right, in the Mediterranean heat and haze of a Venetian canal, the ripples on the surface dance in a coat of reflected colours.before your eyes.
|Venice-Sunlit Ochre Reflections|