Two of my Astoria muriels have been taken away for their annual restoration and have been replaced temporarily by ads for the Brighton Festival. These have also been joined by an Intervention! The cosy living room scene is I think by Deborah Bowness, who is showing at the nearby Phoenix Gallery, as part of the HOUSE festival. She’s been installing wallpaper-type interventions all around Brighton, but the only other one I spotted was in Gardner Street. The festival is going OK for me, I sold a couple of prints and an oil painting (Reef 2007, to Sally Kennedy) at 17 Clyde Road, plus a pile of cards.
This year I won’t be showing at the Dragonfly House, as I haven’t made much new work in the past year. Instead I’ll be showing some older work at 17 Clyde Road, which is where I used to be many years ago – but it’s only open on Sundays! Depending on what Curt will allow me to hang, there will be some oil paintings at knock-down prices, probably 50 quid a pop regardless of size and age. You can see some of them here on Flickr. If it’s not there it may well still be in a stack in my studio, so get in touch if you want one! Once they’re gone, they’re gone for ever. There will also be the same old Art Deco prints, plus two new (unframed) watercolours, including the one of the Granada, Portland Road, Hove, shown above. There may also be prints available at 99 Ditchling Rise.
I thought I’d collect together all the info on the various prints I’ve done in recent years.
Black Rock lido
Black Rock lido was formally opened on 8 August 1936. It was designed by the Borough Engineer David Edwards in ‘Seaside Moderne’ style. The pool closed in 1978 and the changing room and cafe buildings demolished. It is currently a car park for coaches. This is the only print I’ve done of a building that no longer exists.
Saltdean Lido was built in 1937-38 to designs by the architect Richard W H Jones, who also designed the Ocean Hotel (once owned by Butlins) up on the hill. In 1987 it was granted Grade II listed status and last year this was upgraded to Grade II*. There is some debate as to its future. www.saltdeanlidocampaign.org
The Grade II Listed Astoria was designed by Edward Albert Stone, who also designed the Astorias in London. The Art Deco auditorium decorated by Henri & Laverdet seated 1,823 people. It opened on 21 December 1933, closed in 1977 and was a bingo hall until 1996. Its owner Mike Holland plans to demolish it and build a ‘media hub’ on the site. The Astoria Moving Picture Trust is working to save it.
This Grade II* listed block of flats was designed by Wells Coates in 1935-36. Famous residents included Keith Waterhouse and Terence Rattigan. Rex Harrison, Max Miller, Diana Dors, Graham Greene and Lawrence Olivier also spent time there. Restoration of the building took place in 2004-6. www.embassycourt.org.uk
Although there has been an airport on the site since 1910, the Grade II listed terminal building was designed by Stavers H Tiltman and opened in 1936 and is still in use with a modified tower. It has appeared on TV in Agatha Christie’s Poirot and the film The Da Vinci Code.
Well folks, it’s that time of year again and on Saturday I’ll be showing prints old and new at The Dragonfly House, 48 Ditchling Rise, Brighton all the weekends in May. Come and say Hello – I’ll be upstairs above the plan chest. Lots of other good stuff to see and buy too!
I also made a video interview with Rob Peel, last year’s Brighton Festival Award Artist of the Year, for AOH. I couldn’t get the Vimeo video to embed on their site, so here goes for this YouTube version:
It was to become an ice rink – now, according to the Argus it’ll be a ‘temporary’ coach park!
Well, I think it’s finished! I’ve removed all the window clutter and left just the interesting bits. The main Lido building wasn’t very interesting either – you can see some photos here. Black Rock Swimming Pool opened on 8 August 1936 (before Saltdean Lido) and measured 165 feet by 60 feet. It was designed by the Borough Engineer David Edwards in “Seaside Modern” style, with an elegant cafe and changing rooms. It closed in 1978 and the buildings were demolished – and is still a derelict site. I’ve used a bit of artistic licence with Marine Gate (built in 1937-9 to the design of Maurice Bloom) – it’s really a bit further east, behind Asda. The name Black Rock came about because coal was dumped there by ships to avoid paying tax; an alternative explanation was that the nearby gas works dumped tar into the sea at that point.
It is a digital print (ie it doesn’t exist in any other form), A3+ size (329mm x 483mm) on 310gsm (that’s thick and heavy) 100% cotton mould-made Hahnemuhle ‘William Turner’ paper printed in 8-colour archival pigment inks that shouldn’t fade. It is also available as an A4 mini-print on 190gsm paper. The price direct from me is £50 each, they may well be dearer through a gallery or Open House to take into account the commission taken. If you are a dear old friend and I’m in a good mood I may well give you a handsome discount! The original photo I used can be seen here.