There are two good articles in the Guardian Review this weekend one is on David Inshaw, part of the group called The Brotherhood of Ruralists, and the other article by Mary Beard on the Romans and the parallel with our modern society.
The David Inshaw article features his most famous paintings two females playing badminton, there is something of menace in the tall dark evergreen trees, and the equally tall, rather ugly house, but of course it is also quintessential of the English landscape, and gardens of our larger formal houses. The excessive clipping of the box shrub, shows a leisured way of life, gardeners employed to shape and trim. The same neatness is found in the following painting, the untidiness of graves outlined by mown grass. I love also of course his Silbury paintings, one with an owl flying, there is though a reservation in how much I like him, he captures the forms of trees dancing down the landscape, but his neatness goes against my untidy nature. he reminds me that I have a similar feeling when I see the great houses like Castle Howard and their formal parks, so neat and tidy devoid of 'wilderness'. We may thank Capability Brown for designing landscapes but was he not too 'surburban'?
|The May tree - David Inshaw|
What of course drew me to this artistic group was the fact that they lived in the village of Wellow for a while in the old railway station. Wellow was a favourite haunt of mine, Moss and I would walk along the green lane to Stoney Littleton barrow, crossing the pretty brook, up the hill, and I would heave Moss over the stile and there we would contemplate the world from this marvellous tumulus. Yet this has struck me every time I have read or looked at the works about The Brother of Ruralists, why did they not draw this barrow and the the little Wellow brook?
David Inshaw Pastoral Landscapes