ALFRED DRURY AND THE NEW SCULPTURE
Studio 3 Gallery, School of Arts, University of Kent:
30 September – 20 December 2013
The Stanley & Audrey Burton Gallery, University of Leeds:
15 January – 13 April 2014
Studio 3 Gallery is delighted to announce a major new exhibition dedicated to the art of one of the leading sculptors of the late Victorian and Edwardian period: Alfred Drury. The exhibition will show Drury’s most important sculptural works on a smaller scale – including his most characteristic masterpieces Griselda, The Age of Innocence and Lilith – thanks to generous loans from private collections. The exhibition, which will move on in the New Year to The Stanley & Audrey Burton Gallery in Leeds, is supported by grants from the Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art, the Henry Moore Foundation and the Leeds Art Fund.
A fully illustrated catalogue with contributions by Benedict Read, Jolyon Drury, Brian Landy, Jane Winfrey and the exhibition curator Ben Thomas will be published to accompany the exhibition, and which presents new research on the artist. The catalogue is published thanks to the generosity of the Leeds Art Fund – Susan Beattie Memorial.
A display of drawings by Alfred Stevens – ‘England’s Michelangelo’ – from Drury’s collection will accompany this exhibition at The Beaney House of Art and Knowledge in Canterbury from 21 September to 1 December 2013:
A related exhibition on Alfred Drury is currently running at the Henry Moore Institute in Leeds until 20 October 2013, The Age of Innocence: Replicating the Ideal Portrait in the New Sculpture Movement:
The aim of the exhibition Alfred Drury and the New Sculpture is to review the art and life of Alfred Drury (1856-1944), the formative influences on his sculptural practice, and his role in the New Sculpture movement of the late Nineteenth and early Twentieth centuries. Drury is due a reappraisal. Recent writing on the New Sculpture has tended to follow the lead of Edmund Gosse’s influential articles in the Art Journal of 1894, which saw Frederick Leighton and George Frederic Watts as initiating a reform of British sculpture that reached its zenith in the work of Alfred Gilbert and William Hamo Thornycroft. Gosse barely mentioned Drury, dismissing him as ‘a mannered Kensington student, somewhat under the influence of Dalou’.
Arguably, however, Drury was one of the central figures in the New Sculpture movement because he combined in his art the realism of the great French sculptor Aimé-Jules Dalou (1838-1902), with whom he had a long professional relationship, and the Michelangelo-esque vision of Alfred Stevens (1818-75), whose art he revered and whose drawings he collected. Dalou and Stevens were seen as the key influences in the reform of British sculpture by a slightly later generation of critics to Gosse, including Marion H. Spielmann and Kineton Parkes. Drury was recognised by Spielmann as ‘one of the most distinguished’ of the group of British artists taught by the exiled communard Dalou, and according to Parkes, Drury’s ‘adherence to Stevens has never wavered’ so that ‘in his work he is a direct descendant of the great sculptor-painter-designer, and is therefore in the direct line of English sculptural development’. The neglect of Drury’s art may also have been partly due to its languorous beauty, eschewing muscular heroics and decorative excesses. By contrast with Leighton and Thornycroft, Drury ‘cares little for vigour, passion or anatomical display’, argued Spielmann, but instead ‘seeks the graceful, the placid, and the harmonious’.
Alongside sculptural works by Alfred Drury, the exhibition will display paintings and medals by the artist, and also documents and photographs from the period. The exhibition will also include works by Aimé Jules Dalou, Auguste Rodin, Lord Leighton, and Alfred Stevens.
Running from 24 May – 14 June 2013, Two-Faced Fame: Celebrity in Print 1962-2013, a new exhibition held at the University of Kent’s Studio 3 gallery on the Canterbury campus, brings together a diverse range of prints by well-known artists, including Sir Peter Blake, Jason Brooks, Banksy, Gerald Laing, Marc Quinn, John Stezaker, Joe Tilson, Gavin Turk, Stella Vine and Jonathan Yeo.
The exhibition focuses on the ways in which artists over the last 50 years have represented fame and how the various approaches they have taken portray the phenomenon of celebrity mass-culture. The exhibition will also highlight the progression from Pop Art, to postmodern practice and the work of street artists.
From Andy Warhol’s iconic Marilyn Monroe silkscreen prints to John Stezaker’s spliced celebrity photo-portraits, and Banksy’s appropriated honesty, attitudes towards fame have varied tremendously over the last 50 years. The exhibition will provide a visual narrative of how and why artists have chosen to present recognizable figures within their work.
Luke Carver, curator and co-author of Two Faced Fame, commented: “We wanted a subject that would warrant serious exploration but which would also be accessible to everyone and include art that would cater for all tastes. Our aim is to hold an exhibition that explores the different attitudes artists have had towards their subjects, some of which have been critical, some complicit, and some which obscure the boundaries between these two camps. Ultimately, we want to invite a reflection on how and why artistic representations of fame and celebrity have been so varied.”
Ben Thomas, Curator of Studio 3 Gallery, said: “Once again Kent students are rising to the challenge of coming up with an original exhibition concept and meeting professional standards of curating. I am very grateful to all those who have supported the students putting on Two-Faced Fame without whom this exhibition could not have taken place.”
The exhibition will be the fifth organised under the auspices of The Kent Print Collection and the University of Kent. Established in 2005, the award-winning curating programme aims to provide undergraduate students with the unique opportunity to collect art on behalf of the School of Arts, and to put on museum-standard exhibitions drawing on this resource.
Two-Faced Fame will be open to the public from 27th May until 14th June 2013 at the University of Kent’s Studio 3 Gallery. The gallery is open to the public from 9am – 5pm Monday to Friday.
An exhibition of original prints by ‘the great historical painter’ James Barry and his contemporaries, will be held in Studio 3 Gallery, Jarman Building on the University’s Canterbury campus.
From hermaphrodite polar bears to The Beatles, the show includes a colourful array of contemporary original prints by artists who have a connection to Kent. The blockbuster exhibitors include: Sir Peter Blake, Tracey Emin, Jake and Dinos Chapman, Frank Auerbach, Humphrey Ocean, Gary Hume, Chris Orr, Ian Davenport, Angus Fairhurst, Fred Cuming, Michael Craig-Martin, Ana Maria Pacheco, Shane Wheatcroft, and Oliver Winconek.