‘The important thing for me is that I am not in charge of what I do,’ the artist Maggi Hambling reflected when asked about her work. A quick survey of the Law Society Art Group’s annual exhibition would seem to confirm that view. As the UK heads towards Brexit, Obiter notices quite a few paintings of white cliffs – eight in all. ‘Very well, alone!’, they seem to say.
In fact, only one – ‘Strawberry Moon over Dover’ by IA Bax – makes a contemporary point, with a man up a ladder removing a star from an EU flag, Dover Castle lowering fluorescently in the background. Six of the others are the product of the Art Group’s day trip to Sussex’s Seven Sisters cliffs.
Prizes have yet to be awarded, but Obiter would highlight a few works for special mention (works are for sale). John Joseph’s ‘Norfolk Pines’ is a flawless water colour. Also using water colour, Sandra Cochrane had a very worthwhile trip to Trinity Buoy Wharf, the atmospheric site of London’s only lighthouse (where lantern equipment was made, repaired and tested).
In oils, the group’s chair Pey Kan Su remains a favourite for use of colour and perspective. Ruth Munby’s ‘Girls just want to have fun’ is humorous, colourful and well executed (pictured). Obiter also liked some of the lithographs, prints and etchings – notably Jane Hinde’s ‘Slavery’, Tom Butler’s ‘Angkor Apsara 2’, and Peter Haycroft’s ‘Immortality achieved’. Kat Joseph’s sculptures – incorporating repeated representations of human fingers – intrigue.
On a sombre note, one of the cliff paintings is among four oils by former group chair John Corballis, who died last summer. He was very knowledgeable on art in general and a keen promoter of the group. This is its 59th annual exhibition – for information on joining the group, contact Hazel Bate: firstname.lastname@example.org.
The exhibition is in the Reading Room, 113 Chancery Lane, to 18 January.