Skip navigation

Monthly Archives: February 2016

Exciting day yesterday.  Three fossils collected from the Ilminster Area have been confirmed, by ammonite expert Dr Mike Howarth,  to be Caliphylloceras.  This is the first time that this ammonite has been found in the UK (as far as Dr Howarth knows).  These specimens have now been donated to the Natural History Museum for their collections.




Caliphylloceras, slightly larger specimen.


Caliphylloceras, it’s not so obvious (to me) how this was identified.

The Phylloceras ammonites are one of the most long lasting genera, stretching from the Devonian to the Upper Cretaceous.  They don’t show the rapid evolution of many ammonites and are therefore not used for stratigraphic zoning.  They were pelagic and lived in mid-water.  Caliphylloceras are well represented in sediments from Italy and France.



Mark Rothko, Toward the Light in the Chapel by Annie Cohen-Solal.  A very thorough biography of Mark Rothko reviewed here for the Independent newspaper by Marcus Field.  This book covers Rothko’s life, history of the Jewish diaspora from The Pale of Settlement and the rise of American abstract painters in addition to some information about Rothko’s painting practices.


Introducing colour. It’s the border between the b & w and coloured area that needs attention.

The sublime and the ridiculous – a visit to the group show at the RA, Premiums: Interim Projects 2016, followed by a lo——–ng shopping stint.

The MA interim shows at the RA are always my favourite student art shows and this one keeps getting better and better.   Richie Moment’s video’s really made me laugh.  Get onto the world wide web and big yourself up like Richie Moment!  Simple idea – brilliantly executed  but is there anywhere for this to go?  I also like Katya Lewis‘s quiet and thoughtful paintings.  They reminded me to get back to using graphite in my own paintings.  Martin Gross’s prints were also a modern take on an old process and his website shows load more of his prints.

Gabriella Boyd‘s work clearly shows the influence of Chantal Joffe, Professor of Painting at the RA schools.

Visited Standen today, lovely Arts and Crafts House on the High Weald.  I’d swear that last time I visited they had Ford Maddox Brown’s painting, Work, in the stairwell.  it must have been on loan from the Manchester or Birmingham Art Gallery, there are two versions.  Currently The Baptism of Edwin, King of Northumbria, Deira and Bernicia (c.586-632/33, AD 627, possibly by Stewart Rathbone is in the stairwell (but why does it come up under Ford Madox Brown in the NT Catalogue?.  There are other pre-Raphelite drawings on display here too.

Lovely view of The High Weald from Standen House.


Looking south from Standen House.


I’ve begun a new painting.  Based on a photograph of the Andromeda Galaxy taken in Redhill, Surrey.  I have extensively manipulated this photograph in Photoshop.


New painting based on a digital photograph of the Andromeda Galaxy.

To assist with the early stages of the painting I’ve bought an LED projector.



The Detectorists in a field near Leigh today.  Hard to spot, but they’re not animals.  They were evenly spread out all over the field.  They must have had a plan!


Action packed weekend of culture.  Visited Komedia, Brighton on Saturday evening mainly to see the talented comedian Tom Wrigglesworth who didn’t disappoint.  He was just as funny as he was on the radio show Tom Wrigglesworth’s Hang-Ups.  I just wish that his slot had been longer as I was enjoying is so much.  Happily Tom’s slot was followed by the talented Roger Monkhouse who was just as funny and engaging as Tom Wrigglesworth.  Maff Brown, the compere and Steve Harris the first act were just awful.  Real lowest common denominator humor – gross and sexist – avoid unless you’re out on a stag night!

Last night Massive Attack and Young Fathers were at Brighton Dome.  I bought the tickets to see Massive Attack but ended up preferring Young Fathers mainly because they connected with the audience better (and I like their music).  Massive Attack seem to be strangely disengaged.  Their faces were mostly in darkness and were often just silhouettes.  They seemed to be hiding behind their strongly proclaimed political messages about the Syrian Refugee crisis.  Their visual material lights/images and slides were incredibly insistent and distracting.  Young Fathers  have the same message but it was delivered via the music and lyrics.

Then I started thinking about the Bataclan Massacre.