Galleries - June 2015

fromtop left: C amille Pissarro 1830-1903 ‘Le Ru de Montbuisson, Louveciennes’ c.1869, at Stern Pissarro Bryan Wynter ‘Sand Traverse’ 1962, at Alan Wheatley John Plumb ‘Blenhiem’ 1962, at Paisnel Gallery Joseph Lacasse ‘Lumière’ 1965, at Whitford Fine Art Krishen Khanna ‘Untitled (Bandwallas)’ 2015, at Grosvenor Gallery William Tillyer ‘Palmer Series’ 2015, at Bernard Jacobson contemporary Indian art. Meanwhile don’t forget there are even galleries appearing on the great club-land street of Pall Mall – Philip Mould’s massive new space specialising in British art and portraiture is due to open later this year while a few doors along, Panter & Hall continue with their lively, ever changing shows of contemporary figurative painting, in a striking columned gallery just opposite the Athenaeum. Over to St James’s Street and our last two ports of call – Aktis and Stern Pissarro; very different kinds of galleries, with Aktis specialising in Modern European and 20th C. Russian émigré art – though this month showing the great Cuban Surrealist sculptor, Agustin Cárdenas – and Stern Pissarro with, as the name suggests, placing the emphasis on French Impressionism and Post- Impressionism and the Pissaro family in particular. At the latter I saw what I felt to be perhaps the greatest single painting I’d seen all day – Camille Pissarro’s ‘Le Ru de Montbuisson, Louveciennes’ of 1869 – classic early Impressionism. N U C. prints. The current exhibition shows work of the great American multi-media Modernist Bruce Naumann from 1970-2006 – a rare treat for an artist not that often seen in the UK for some reason. Just across the road are Stoppenbach & Delestre, specialists in 19th and early 20th C. French paintings and drawings and, virtually next door, Grosvenor Gallery who, as well as exhibiting a number of British and 20th C. contemporary artists through their close link with the Vadhera Gallery in New Delhi, also show probably some of the best work by 20th C. artists from the Indian sub-continent that you are likely to see in London. This month for example, to celebrate his upcoming 90th birthday, they are mounting their first exhibition of Krishen Khanna, the great Indian figurative/narrative painter. This show will focus on his famous ‘Bandwalla’ series from the last 15 years. These intensely coloured, expressionistically painted canvases of the local brass bands who play at weddings and other ceremonies, are among the most vital and important documents of JUNE 2015 GALLERIES 13 success his powerful work deserved, while earning a living as a teacher at the Central School of Art & Design. There are welcome signs of renewed interest in his work however, which this excellent show (and book) should certainly do much to encourage. Bury Street is packed with galleries doing so many different things that it seems almost invidious only to mention a small number of them. Martyn Gregory’s China Trade paintings were featured in Galleries May issue, but it shouldn’t be forgotten that he often holds a varied stock of British watercolours and drawings, including 20th C. I noticed some wonderful natural history studies by the incomparable C.F. Tunnicliffe when I last visited. Up at the top end, temporarily hidden under scaffolding, is John Huddy’s delightful Illustrationcupboard Gallery which specialises in 2Oth C. and contemporary book illustration. Ex-Christies, Huddy really knows what he is about, the current show being of original art work by one of the ‘greats’ of the genre, 85 year old Brian Wildsmith – something of a rarity for private collectors with most of his work now held in museums. Back down Bury Street to where it crosses with Ryder Street and the back of the Modernist Economist building, is Sims Reed Gallery with a very elegant space to show top 20th