Coming Up

Our pick of forthcoming shows, across Sussex

Picture by Jim Holden

Surrealist Picnic (and other shows)

Farleys House and Gallery, Aug 28

Book early if a surrealist fancy dress picnic in the Sussex home of Lee Miller and Roland Penrose appeals to you. It takes place (rain or shine) on the August Bank Holiday Sunday in the beautiful sculpture garden of Farleys House. You are invited to dress up and bring your own surrealist feast to eat while enjoying some live jazz, surreal performance and dance. And remember: Miller and Penrose themselves met at a surrealist ball, in Paris (apparently it was love at first sleight).

There are exhibitions on throughout the summer, too, whether or not you’re interested in the feast (Farleys is open on Thursdays and Sundays till October). Until July 26 there’s a show of Grace Pailthorpe’s vivid ‘psychorealist’ watercolours from the 60s (some of you might remember the retrospective of her, and her partner Reuben Mednikoff’s, work at the De la Warr Pavilion in 2018). And, until Oct 23, here’s a fascinating look at the surrealists’ role in the development of Allied camouflage in WW2 (you can read more about that here).

Picasso and Lee Miller in his studio, Liberation of Paris, Rue des Grands Augustins, Paris, France 1944 by Lee Miller © Lee Miller Archives, England 2022. All rights reserved.

Lee Miller & Picasso

Newlands House, Sep 10-Jan 8

This autumn, a new exhibition at Newlands House will unravel and chronicle the extraordinary life of Vogue model turned war correspondent lee Miller, a pioneer in Surrealist art, fashion and photojournalism.

The exhibition will focus on the artist’s relationship with Picasso and moments lived together, captured by Miller before and during the Second World War, the aftermath and beyond. The exhibition will also tell the unlikely story of Picasso’s accidental discovery of Sussex, where Lee Miller would eventually reside with her family.

Tickets are now ready for pre-booking – be among the first to experience this new exhibition.

·       Caragh Thuring, August 1779, 2011. Oil and matting agent on dyed linen 182.9 x 243.8 cm. 72 1/8 x 96 in. © Caragh Thuring. Courtesy the artist and Thomas Dane Gallery. Photo: Richard Ivey

Caragh Thuring

Hastings Contemporary, Oct 8-March 12

In Autumn 2022, Hastings Contemporary will present a major survey show of the work of Caragh Thuring, including paintings, drawings and monotypes. It will be her first UK exhibition in six years.

Thuring’s unique compositions oscillate between the humorous and the quotidian, juxtaposing signs and imagery from her recurring iconography of volcanoes, bricks, submarines, tartan, human silhouettes, and flora, and exploring where natural and manufactured worlds collide. 

For recent works, Thuring has commissioned bespoke cloth from silk weavers in Suffolk to use as her canvas. Digital renderings of previous paintings photographs she has taken, or found images are woven on a loom, sewn together, and stretched before being painted onto.

Thuring says she is looking forward to the unprecedented experience of seeing her works created at different points through her career, together for the first time.

Chantal Joffe, Self Portrait with Esme on the Promenade, 2014

Making Waves

Hastings Contemporary, Oct 8-March 12

To celebrate 10 years since it opened its doors, this art gallery on the beach is showing 10 artworks from some of the outstanding artists that have exhibited in its light-filled spaces.

They include the likes of Maggi hambling, Rose Wylie and Chantal Joffe. Plus, of course, national treasure and Hastings’ own Quentin Blake.

Bill Brandt, Nude, East Sussex Coast, 1979. Gelatin silver print. Courtesy of Marlborough Gallery

Sussex Landscape: Chalk, Wood and Water

Pallant House Gallery, November 12-April 23

We were privileged to be given a run-through of this forthcoming show by Pallant House director Simon Martin, and we know that we’ll be paying more than one visit, when it opens, there’s so much to take in.

Sussex doesn’t boast the rugged remoteness that has drawn many artists to the Lake District, Cornwall and the Highlands of Scotland, but its rolling, gentle beauty and the variety provided by coast, Downs and Weald (not to mention its proximity to London) has arguably made it the most painted – and engraved, and sketched, and photographed – landscape in the country.

This extensive exhibition starts with works by Turner and Constable, who did so much to establish the tradition of landscape art in this country (and county), skips the Victorian era, takes us through the many Modernist artists to interpret their Sussex surroundings (from William Nicholson, via Edward Burra, Paul Nash, Eric Ravilious and Vanessa Bell, to Tom Hammick) and offers a 21st-century perspective, too, through the eyes of James Gardiner, Wolfgang Tilmans, Tania Kovats and Jo Sweeting.

Can’t wait: in the meantime we’re going to have to make do with the real thing.

Have we missed you out?

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