Galleries - April 2016

images of the birds it collected, many of them now extinct, largely thanks to man’s depredations. Like everything in the show Jewell creates something both beautiful and poignant, and intensely resonant because of that. While wildlife artist Gary Hodges has always covered the whole range of African animals, the big cats have taken pride (no pun intended) of place, with his astonishingly and meticulously detailed pencil studies – his only medium in fact – selling, as signed prints, well over a hundred thousand at the last count. Now, in his first solo show in 22 years, at the Mall Galleries , Gary is putting on a major selling exhibition of the original drawings to raise money for two wild life charities, the Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA) and the Born Free Foundation. As Gary Hodges has always commendably insisted, he could never have brought himself to draw wildlife without giving back to the relevant charities, so it represents a double whammy for collectors – not only the chance to own an original, but also to give to these important agencies. Nicholas Usherwood In short an excellent celebration of Piper’s remarkable output which, taken together with current shows at Pallant House Gallery, Twenty Twenty Gallery and Oriel Ynys Môn , should certainly help to consolidate his standing as a 20th century original. While birds have long been artist and anthropologist Rebecca Jewell’s favoured subject matter, it has never been simply a matter of observational recording and setting down, but rather a question of looking into the troubled nature of mankind‘s relationship with birds, both historically and today. As writer Jonathan Frantzen said of her work, birds have often come to represent the Other, both beautiful and revered, but also, because of their ability to fly, to be envied and thus objects to be trapped and killed in their millions. Her latest show at Rebecca Hossack Art Gallery takes this a stage further however. Her technique of meticulously printing bird images on to thousands of feathers is now being developed in a myriad of forms, exploring the troubled history of anthropological and natural history collecting. For example, relating to the lengthy Whitney Expedition to the South Seas in the 1920s, in which, on a photograph of the sailing barque, Jewell imprints on the sails Gary Hodges Rebecca Jewell When Patricia Jordan Evans first opened the Bohun Gallery in Henley-on-Thames in 1974 she could hardly have imagined that the local ‘famous’ artist, John Piper, who lived just up the road would soon come to form a regular part of her exhibition programme for the next 40 years. A typically enterprising gallerist, Jordan Evans’ 1975 exhibition marked the first time Piper had ever exhibited his experimental ‘Eye and Camera’ collage series from the 1960s, Pop Art influenced work that is still not that well known today. Examples are included now in the wide ranging, celebratory show she has put on which, entitled ‘40 Years with John Piper’, covers most aspects of his prolific output. There was seemingly nothing Piper couldn’t put his mind and hand to, from ceramics and photography to tapestry and stained glass, and examples of most of them are included here alongside a splendid cross section of the paintings, collages and prints that form the core of his output. One of the star pieces in the show is, fittingly, a massive six foot tapestry, ‘Foliate Head in Red and Blue’ , a favoured subject of Piper’s in later years and from a series of ‘Foliate Head’ designs which Bohun had been the first gallery to show a complete exhibition of in 1992. John Piper APRIL 2016 GALLERIES 9 S HOWS from left J ulian Brown ‘Gamma’, The Contemporary British Painting Prize Ffiona Lewis ‘Bird Hide’, Alde Valley Spring Festival Gary Hodges ‘Spirit of Elsa’, Mall Galleries