Monday, 27 September 2021

Gallery charts enduring influence of music on art

THE Henley Festival. Rewind. Garsington Opera at Wormsley. It’s fair to say the summer months in

THE Henley Festival. Rewind. Garsington Opera at Wormsley. It’s fair to say the summer months in Henley and the surrounding area are filled with music.

This has provided the catalyst for an exhibition exploring the influence of music on some of the leading artists of the 20th century.

Artists and Music runs at the Bohun Gallery in Reading Road, Henley, until Saturday, August 15.

Among the highlights is a rare opportunity to see John Piper’s model design for a 1973 production of Benjamin Britten’s Death in Venice, accompanied by silkscreens of the same subject.

Gallery manager Katie Newman said: “For centuries music has inspired artists and we have curated a show that explores the influence of music on 20th century and contemporary artists.

“There will be world-class art in this show and it’s a real opportunity for art enthusiasts to view such paintings and sculpture outside London. The John Piper Estate are supporting us and have loaned the original model set design for Piper’s Death in Venice â?? the first time it has ever been publicly on view.

“In addition to work by John Piper, there are paintings by Mary Fedden, drawings by Stanley Spencer, and even Andrew Logan, the English eccentric sculptor and founder of The Alternative Miss World, has contributed a work.”

Other artists with work in the show include Julian Trevelyan, Feliks Topolski, Allen Jones, Terry Frost, David Remfry, Maggi Hambling, Ceri Richards, Louis Turpin and Eric Rimmington.

The gallery’s management opted to close for the duration of the Henley Royal Regatta, but reopened on Tuesday â?? just in time for the start of the Henley Festival the following day.

Katie added: “The inspiration behind [the exhibition] is the incredible variety of music we celebrate in Henley and the local area during this time of year â?? from the Henley Festival to Garsington Opera to Rewind. With paintings and sculpture commissioned especially for this exhibition, there will be a huge diversity in artistic styles and musical influences. This really will be a fantastic show and will have very wide appeal.”

Of course, no exhibition celebrating the relationship between music and art would be complete without a sample of pop art.

Hailed as the godfather of the form, Sir Peter Blake cemented his place in history by co-designing the sleeve of the Beatles’ seminal 1967 album Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band with his then wife Jann Haworth. A pop artist since the Fifties, he once said of his work: “I wanted to make an art that was the visual equivalent of pop music.”

He is represented in the exhibition with Boogie Woogie and a 2004 album cover for Beach Boys leader Brian Wilson.

For full details of the show, visit

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