Galleries - November 2014

who circles restlessly around a sculpture. What would he not do to transform his sight into touch, to make his seeing into a form of touching that feels in the dark?” Looking at these remarkable sculptures from the last four decades or so by William Tucker at Pangolin London , with figuration constantly being pushed to the edge of abstraction, Herder’s words seem to take on a very particular and powerful resonance, the tactile, sensual quality of the artist’s shaping hand everywhere quite unmistakable. It is interesting too that it is just these works of Tucker’s which seem to have found and engaged a new audience in a way that the very much more cerebral geometric forms of the 60s and early 70s did (could?) not. In short Tucker seems to be coming to a significant resolution in his work, one which is establishing him as among the greatest of living British sculptors. Galleries Christmas issue: In Decemberwe shall look at some majorexhibitions to visit during the holiday season, including Turner at Tate Britain, Constable at the V&A and Rembrandt at the National Gallery in London. Also don’t miss ourpopularannual feature on giving art for Christmas . . . Daphne Reynolds and she is, this month, being given a room to herself – the gallery space itself is divided up into a number of delightful small rooms on two levels. Daphne Reynolds was a wonderfully lively and eccentric figure in the London art world of the 70s and 80s but she never quite got the critical and gallery success her sharp and distinctive viewpoint deserved. Encouraged in the esoteric and ancient art of mezzotint by the late, great Anthony Gross at the Slade in the late 60s, she found here a technique that suited her witty, observant eye perfectly, full of ambiguous shadows and subtle nuances – for example, the subtle surrealism of five Lemon Soles or everyday objects like flat-irons and icing cones. It was a way of looking at things that crept into her watercolours and drawings as well, as in Yellow Lilies with Bees or Twin Towers. This is a splendid rediscovery of genuine value. Unearthing the Figure Great sculpture, as the German Romantic writer Herder observed in his famous treatise Sculpture , is “physically present, tangible truth. The beautiful line that constantly varies its course is never forcefully broken or contorted, but rolls over the body with beauty and splendour; it is never at rest but always moving forward . . . Consider the lover of art sunk deep in contemplation Eastern Angles Famous in the 80s and 90s for its plethora of antique shops – ‘Lovejoy’ on TV and all that – Long Melford has, more recently, morphed into a significant focal point for the visual arts. With the recent arrival (in September) of Walton & Bovill, this large village (small town?) now has five and the place is buzzing with visitors and activity. The galleries all offer rather different things – Lime Tree, for example, just down Hall Street from Walton & Bovill, presents a lively cross-section of contemporary fine art and glass, with Scottish artists something of a speciality. Walton & Bovill itself aims at a rather different mix – with a strong flavour of 20th C British and European, and sometimes even earlier, alongside younger contemporary painters, sculptors and photographers. Thus, in the opening show, older generation figures like Patrick George, Mary Webb, Sandra Blow, Annie Leibovitz, Humphrey Spender, Max Bill and Joseph Albers find themselves rubbing shoulders with up and coming young stars such as Essex-based landscape abstractionist Simon Carter, Russian-born, Paris-based painter Ulyana Gumeniuk and Suffolk-based sculptor Sarah Pirkis. Meanwhile, among the other things that caught my eye were some etchings and watercolours by the late, East Anglian based NOVEMBER 2014GALLERIES 13 Daphne Reynolds ‘Cockatoos’ at Walton & Bovill. W illiam Tucker ‘Leonidas’ © Pangolin London. Ezra & Sion, Bombay ‘Royal Cap’ in Mughal style, early 1900s, at Francesca Galloway, Asian Art in London (article p15)