Report on The Friends of St Anne’s Virtual Zoom Webinar Talk
TUESDAY 17TH NOVEMBER 2020
By Dr DAVID BELLINGHAM
We were delighted to welcome Dr David Bellingham – David is an art historian, author, and Programme Director for the master’s degree in Art Business at Sotheby’s Institute of Art, London. David has given three or so Lectures over the past 3 or 4 years – then of course live! Always attracting an excellent audience although St Anne’s parish hall can only hold 80 people maximum and we far exceeded that double in fact of 166 plus! Just shows some advantages of technology now in our ‘new normal’!
When David and I discussed the lecture back in October he was planning to introduce the exhibition at TATE BRITAIN on Turner scheduled to open on 28th October 2020 until 7th March 2021 which it did – but sadly had to close a week later due to the second lockdown.
However, that did not deter David having managed to view the exhibition in that short week it was open. This enabled him to deliver the most inspiring, captivating and so professionally researched lecture.
From very enthusiastic comments we received, the audience found it so well presented informing us of many things we had no idea about Turner leaving many of us wanting to see the movie ‘Mr Turner’ with Timothy Spall again. With David talking us through the layout of the Tate Britain Exhibition and how each room has been created, the theme of each room and so fascinating what other artists who either influenced Turner or had been influenced by Turner related about him. Fascinatingly many of his paintings had been compared to the Impressionists well before they came onto the market. (See note at end of report )
I am sure many members of our audience will flock to the Exhibition when it can finally open again being so well informed. David brought everything so alive for us and seeing the local places where Turner was born and lived namely Brentford, Isleworth, Twickenham, and Syon Park -so familiar to those of us living around there. David is such an excellent and accomplished speaker – his students are extremely lucky to be taught by him.
Further background to the Lecture
Joseph Mallard William Turner (1775–1851) was born during the first generation of the Industrial Revolution and lived through the cultural periods of Neo-Classicism, Romanticism, and the Greek Revival. He was very much a Londoner, being christened in St Paul’s, Covent Garden, dying in Cheyne Walk and buried in St Paul’s Cathedral. He was also a great traveller, wandering in search of romantic subjects throughout England, Wales and Scotland and the continent as far afield as Switzerland and the South of Italy. He knew Kew and its surrounding area well, living as a boy with his uncle in Brentford where he first started to make drawings, renting Ferry House on the river at Syon, and from 1811 designing a house in St Margaret’s Twickenham which is now open to visitors. The lecture will focus on those drawings and paintings which appear to reference the modern world in which Turner lived, culminating in the dynamically-titled Rain, Steam and Speed: The Great Western Railway (1844) where nature and culture at their most extreme are painted on collision course.
Several members of the Audience asked questions at the end of the lecture and one in particular about comparisons of some of Turner’s Paintings to the Impressionists prompted David to send us this summary below
Dear Lorraine and Nigel, I asked my Sotheby’s Institute colleague whether there were any primary sources which indicated the influence of Turner on Impressionists and he found this letter (see below) by Pissarro (who of course lived on Kew Green) to his son. So there is at least indirect evidence that when artists like Monet and Pissarro came to live in London they saw the NG Turners and admired them. Whether their actual works were influenced is another matter not yet resolved.
“You and Esther [cousin of Lucien, niece of Camille]have been to the National Gallery, you have seen the Turners, yet you don’t mention them. Can it be that the famous painting The Railway, The Burial of the Painter Wilkie, the astonishing Seascape, at the Kensington Museum, the View of Saint Mark in Venice, the little sketches retouched with watercolours of fish and fishing equipment, etc., did not impress you?”
Letter to Lucien, 20 February 1883. It’s actually the second letter after Lucien immigrates to London. And it comes over 10 years after Camille lived there, so I think it’s fair to say the works made a powerful impression on him.
Camille Pissarro, Letters to his Son Lucien, ed. John Rewald, trans. Lionel Abel (Boston: MFA, 2002), p. 22.
Report on The Friends of St Anne’s Virtual Zoom Webinar Talk
‘The Great Exhibition of 1851 & the Establishment of the V&A Museum’
Wednesday 14th October 2020
by Anna Warrillow
We were delighted to welcome Anna Warrillow – Anna is a very renowned Blue- Badge Guide, University Art History Lecturer & Ex- Curator at the V&A & well known to members of the Arts Society Richmond – as she is a regular Art Society Lecturer. Anna was originally booked to give her talk live in May 2020 but due to lockdown we had to postpone it. We were so delighted to reschedule her Talk for October.
Having watched the fascinating BBC Two six- part Documentary ‘Secrets of The Museum’ last Spring – we enjoyed hearing Anna talk about how in 1851, in London’s Hyde Park, the world’s first international exhibition was held, to display the ‘works of industry of all nations.’ This was the high watermark of British economic power and might, as Britain in the mid-nineteenth century was the largest global manufacture, quite literally became the ‘workshop of the world.’
Anna explained how the Great Exhibition transformed people’s views on design, manufacturing and technology and how the profits of the Exhibition went on to create one of the most famous cultural quarters in London, including the foundation of the South Kensington Museum, today called the Victoria & Albert Museum,
Anna delivered a captivating, inspiring and interesting lecture – very beautifully illustrated giving us such a ‘tour’ and insight into the building and contents of the V&A. We could not wait to get back to visit.
Anna is an excellent and accomplished speaker in virtual lectures that we are now becoming so familiar with now in 2020. We received positive feedback from many members of the audience.
Anna is the founder of Canvas & Stone Tours. She is open to all but she particularly specialises in couples, families, and multi-generational groups.
‘BRITAIN AS WORKSHOP OF THE WORLD’ ‘The Great Exhibition of 1851 & the establishment of the Victoria & Albert Museum’– Virtual Online Zoom Talk – Wednesday 14th 2020 at 7.00pm to 8.00pm – Link to follow
A Talk by Anna Warrillow – Blue- Badge Guide, University Art History Lecturer & Ex- Curator at the V&A.
Earlier this year if you saw the fascinating BBC Two six- part Documentary ‘Secrets of The Museum’ you will not want to miss coming along to hear Anna Warrillow – an ex-curator at the V&A ( not involved in the documentary) talk about how in 1851, in London’s Hyde Park, the world’s first international exhibition was held, to display the ‘works of industry of all nations.’
Report, Photographs & Follow up on the event with Jack Russell on Saturday 12thSeptember 2020
Warm, sunny weather encouraged a very good crowd of people on Saturday all eager to chat and watch Jack Russell start creating his remarkable oil painting of St Anne’s Church & the Cricket Pavilion. Jack will finish the oil painting around the beginning of October and will then get the Giclee prints produced towards the end of October. Once we receive it, we will post a copy of the print onto our website and circulate to members with more details about viewing the print in person. Please register your interest in buying a print or for any other query contact Shane Macdermott () or the Friends Membership Secretary at
Report on The Friends of St Anne’s first Virtual Lecture on Zoom Webinar – 10th September 2020.
‘RAPHAEL – A MASTER IN THE MAKING’ by Siân Walters MA (Cantab)
After over 9 months in planning of this lecture which was to have been in person with Siân, The Friends Executive Committee, with the difficulties of Covid 19 and not being able to hold our fundraising events in person, took the decision to start presenting our first ever virtual Lectures. Knowing Siân was an experienced renowned Art History Lecturerlecturing at the National Gallery, the Wallace Collection, among others and with her own Tour and Event company ‘ART HISTORY IN FOCUS’ which arranges regular courses, study days and visits in the UK as well as cultural holidays throughout Europe, we felt confident that our venture into this unknown world would be a success and particularly as she had excellent experience in virtual lecturing.
As Siân says she is a firm believer in ‘making art history fun’ and what great fun we experienced with her beautiful voice that led us through such evocative and beautiful parts of Italy putting the life of the young Raphael into perspective initially as he honed his craft working with many established masters of the time. As Raphael moved between these great masters he was taught to paint in their style in order that as a student he could complete and finish the many commissions that the master had in work at any one time. Then in later years as he became a master in his own right, Siân used his paintings to compare the similarities of styles with some of his great teachers with an amazing ability and skill in relaying the information in such a professional and relaxed manner.
We were very pleased with how this first virtual lecture went which bodes well for our next one on 14th October at 7pm(Britain as Workshop of the World– See flyer linked here) and with the feedback that we received illustrates below it would seem that we should proceed with arranging more for later in November, December and probably into Spring 2021. We do hope you will join us and spread the word to your friends and family who are all welcome to join in too.
Selection of feedback received:
‘Being a big fan of Siân I settled down last night / Siân is so good to listen to with her relaxed seemingly unscripted delivery’.
‘It was indeed excellent and given by someone who has such a talent to help us really follow Raphael’s inspirational artists. Many thanks to her and you Lorraine for arranging this lecture’.
‘The talk was absolutely super . Fascinating ! An insight I would never have gained without explicit direction . I am Usually someone with the Headphones and the Guide . I was concerned that I might not manage the signing in , but it worked like clockwork and I just missed the start .(30 secs). The delivery was clear and the pictures were easy to follow with her discussion. What a memory she must have. Much appreciated and enjoyed .Thank you for the opportunity to see this’.
‘I thought the talk was great! Very well thought out and lots of good visuals. I had no problems at all – easy to join via Zoom, good audio and video quality. It certainly set an excellent precedent for online talks. I hope it raised lots of money’
‘Enormous thanks to the Friends Committee for organising that wonderful lecture on Leonardo on Thursday. Chores meant I didn’t see every minute sadly, but loved all I saw and thought the lecturer top-notch. How I would love to go on an art study holiday with her! How ingenious of you all to organise it so expertly. Now look forward to the next ….days are full making that hour a marvellous spell of complete absorption end enlightenment. Best wishes to all the Committee, specially Lorraine whose Italian jaunt set it all off’’
MUSIC played in 15-minute holding period before start of lecture:
I’m sure you will agree that the beautiful 15-minute holding music as you signed in was spell binding. It was composed by ‘Gareth Walters’ Siân’s Father, a very renowned Composer working for the BBC among other organisations – music was ‘Divertimento for Strings, ///: Lento Cantabile’ by Gareth Walters
Is it timeless and ageless? The inside story from Lorraine Neale (Chairman of The Friends of St Anne’s Church) who was privileged to have worked with Barbara Hulanicki, the founder, during this innovative time and continues to work with her today as her Managing Agent. Lorraine will brought along a few of her Biba Clothes that she wore in the 1970’s