Wednesday, 11 June 2014

Stanley Spencer at The Pallant

The Captain, Jackie, Bea  and me have been pounding the pavements of Chichester. We have been to the Pallant Gallery on a perfect summer day (Tuesday) to see the Stanley Spencer, and to lunch.

It was a classic summer day - hot, blue skies, white clouds, lush green and wildflowers everywhere.    And so far my legs have held up. They ache - everything hurts, but I did it.  And I think I can now leave my bag of cushions behind. It has been raising seats for me for months now, but I managed without it yesterday.

The Spencer paintings are of WW1  and what to say about them?  They are full of energy - full of his passion for fabric and for things.  The washing of the patients' lockers in the big bath tubs- amazing - like going through a time machine, and seeing that moment in time.

And what interested me so much is that the paintings showed that Spencer understood that the Biblical hope for the dead is the resurrection - waking up again on the earth.  Not floating off up to heaven.

Sadly he seems to have abandoned his first wife and his children for someone he became obsessed with and who did not love him. But I don't know that it is ever wise to marry an artist, or a poet.   They so often have rackety private lives.   One of the Captain's many fine qualities is that he has never written a poem to me, and I am confident he never will.

It gives me a lovely feeling of security.  And in any case, knowing him, if he did, it would start something like this:
"There was a young lady of Wherevermoor
Well, I say young, but she's not anymore, etc etc"

Bea treated us to lunch at Pulborough Brooks on Monday.   We had pasta bolognese - excellent, but so much we couldn't finish it and should have brought a doggie bag.    Is it that portions are much larger now, or - gulp - that we are much older - or a combination of the two?

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