Generous gift day

David Manley Avatar


It was a real pleasure to get into the studio today…not only did I resolve two of the large Conversation pieces to my satisfaction but I was able to take receipt of this generous gift of a painting by Arthur Goodwin.  It came to me very fortuitously from Jill Langford to whom I am so grateful.  Arthur was Vice-Principal at Exeter College of Art up to and including the period I spent there on Foundation studies.  His son Paul and myself studied together in the art room at Hele’s School Exeter overseen by the wonderful teacher and distinguished sculptor Peter Thursby. I happened to mention this to Jill on a visit to her home a few years back…she is moving and downsizing so her collection requires a bit of pruning and she recalled our conversation and offered me this choice cutting!  At the time I first saw it it was late and quite dark at her home…now I can study it carefully in good light it is particularly interesting to see that the work is painted on a cupboard door.  One of the things about the picture I particularly like is the way in which the wood and its grain is used to good effect as both ground and surface incident.  Interestingly I saw another work a year or so back in my curated show ‘Painting Too’ by Mathew Macaulay that in some ways provides an echo of this work..painted on a reclaimed timber with very loose painterly handling.  Arthur painted his picture in 57/58 , under the influence of post War School of Paris though no doubt with a nod towards Abstract Expressionism from the States that was relatively still unfamiliar in those days in the UK.  Matthew’s work was painted last year but I suspect the influences have similar echoes overlaid with a contemporary sensibility – another example for me of the inter-generational interaction I recently wrote about here.


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