Out of Chaos

Wednesday, September 9th 2015

Having returned from a short but intensive trip to Marseille, we wanted to spend a relatively leisurely day today and decided that a visit to an art exhibition would fill the bill nicely. This one was being held at Somerset House in the Strand and was therefore easy to access.

The exhibition is by the Ben Uri Gallery and remains on view until December 13th 2015. Admission is free and photography is allowed. It is entitled Out of Chaos and features works of art by mainly Jewish émigrés, some well known, some less so. You will find details on the Ben Uri Gallery’s exhibition page.

Exhibits are arranged in several rooms with information boards that give a good explanation and overview of the periods and styles in which the art works were made. I obviously cannot reproduce that information here and, in any case, you need to see the exhibits for the explanations to make sense. Nor can I show all the works, so I have limited myself to a few samples without attempting to make these representative of the exhibition of a whole. They are simply works that caught my attention.

Photographing paintings is more difficult than it may seem. You need to set the camera squarely in front of the work in order to avoid such distortions as converging horizontals and verticals. Lighting is critical and in this exhibition posed difficulties because the spotlights used inevitably caused reflections on the surface of the images. For this reason, I avoided paintings covered with glass as he results would have been unacceptable.

Sabbath Rest
Sabbath Rest
Samuel Hirszenberg (1865-1908), 1894

Portrait of Queen Victoria
Portrait of Queen Victoria
Solomon Alexander Hart (1806-81), 1842

Sabbath Afternoon
Sabbath Afternoon
Alfred Wolmark (1877-1961). c.1909

Bust of Jacob Kramer
Bust of Jacob Kramer
Jacob Epstein (1880-1959), 1921

Merry-Go-Round
Merry-Go-Round
Mark Gertler 1891-1939), 1916

The Rt. Hon Leslie Hore-Belisha
The Rt. Hon Leslie Hore-Belisha
Zeev Ben-Zvi (1904-52), c.1937-9
(Click for other views)

Self-portrait
Self-portrait
Reuven Rubin (1893-1974), 1937

Portrait of Orovida Pissarro
Portrait of Orovida Pissarro
Clara Klinghoffer (1900-70), 1962

The Interrogation
The Interrogation
George Grosz (1893-1959), 1938

The architecture of Somerset House, both internally and externally, is of interest and if you have noticed my fascination with staircases, the next photo will not come as a surprise:

Staircase, Somerset House
Staircase, Somerset House

Somerset House, once a royal palace, is formed around a large courtyard which is now used to host all kinds of events. This picture is a composite of several photos and therefore shows some slight distortion but nevertheless gives an impression on the courtyard (click for a larger view).

The Courtyard, Somerset House
The Courtyard, Somerset House

Copyright © 2015 SilverTiger, https://tigergrowl.wordpress.com, All rights reserved.

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About SilverTiger

I live in Islington with my partner, "Tigger". I blog about our life and our travels, using my own photos for illustration.
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2 Responses to Out of Chaos

  1. WOL says:

    It must have been an interesting exhibit. I like the first painting.

    • SilverTiger says:

      Yes, it was. Such exhibitions, which draw artists and artworks together around a theme, can be very illuminating. It invests them with meanings you might miss in other contexts.

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