The Law Society’s Art Group is holding its 61st Annual Exhibition. This year, due to the pandemic, the group will be holding the exhibition online hosted on the Law Society’s website. We miss the buzzing annual exhibitions traditionally held at the Law Society’s Reading Room in Chancery Lane.
Hopefully, it won’t be long when the group can return to the Reading Room. In the meantime, we have embraced the online exhibition and believe that it will take the show to a new realm reaching a wider audience than is possible with a physical exhibition. As they said, every cloud has its silver lining.
This year, the show brings together artworks by 32 members of varying expressions and subjects. The expressions range from the carefully calculated, the incommunicably illusive and the care-free. Judge Clive Jones, a regular guest to the annual shows and who has had a preliminary glimpse of the show, told me that he is impressed that the show not only mirrors the court’s adaption to remote-hearings in the pandemic, the titles of several artworks from 'Chilling Out', 'Lockdown Gloom', 'Lockdown Lobster Treat' (of post-Brexit stock?), 'Herd Immunity' to 'Beyond Here There Lies Nothing' seem to reflect present reality and mood. Indeed, I say, looking at the wedding scene in 'After Veronese' (exhibit no. 87 in case you wonder what I am alluding to), one can’t help wonder whether the holy guests would have had to perform another miracle to save the mortal hosts and guests including the four great Venetian painters (portrayed as music performers) from fines under the current Tier 4 restrictions.
This is not a place for me to review the artworks. The review and forecast of prize winners are usually expertly, unbiasedly and reliably provided by Eduardo Reyes of the Law Society Gazette in its Obiter page at the appropriate time. As the exhibits are displayed in alphabetical order of artists’ names, I suggest if viewers take their time scrolling down to the end of the display, they will be rewarded by many pleasant surprises that will make them feel certain that a work or two of these artworks on one’s office walls can be enriching, inspiring and helping to lift the gloom of the current lockdown.
Judging art show of a group is always difficult. However, with a different judge every year, the field is pretty level. The art judge for this year’s show is Professor Anita Taylor who is also the founding director of the prestigious Trinity Buoy Wharf Drawing Prize. The main prizes up for grab this year are the Sylvester Amiel Lewin & Horne prize for the Most Outstanding Work, Radcliffe Chambers prize for the Best Oil/Acrylic, Edwin Coe prize for Best Work on Paper, and Laura Devine Immigration prize for the Best 3-D Work. As is our tradition, judging is done at the private view and winners revealed on announcement by the judge. So, to find out if Eduardo has made his forecast correctly, come and join us at the private view which will be held online via zoom on the evening 5 March 2021 (and details of which may be obtained by emailing Lawsocietyartgroup@gmail.com).
The artistic wonders provided by the group does not stop at the annual exhibition. On the evening of 8 April 2021, the group and Collyer Bristow will co-host an online talk by the artist and art-writer, Tim Hyman RA, on 'A New Kind of Figuration'. Contact me via the above email should you be interested to book tickets for the talk (subject to availability).
The Law Society’s 61st Annual Exhibition is viewable from today.
The exhibition and its catalogue may also be viewed on the group’s Facebook link.
Pey Kan Su is chair of the Law Society Art Group