Film and introductory talk
Friday 29 January 7pm
The new film made by Stephen Jacobson and Alex Kirby about the life and work of Alfred Stockham, featuring many of the artists in the current show, with an introduction by Stephen Jacobson and Alfred Stockham ARCA RWA.
Tickets: £10 or £25 with buffet celebration dinner afterwards
As a painter, an art teacher and a friend, Alfred Stockham has inspired and influenced many artists working today, and the exhibition showing at Sladers Yard until 28 February celebrates his own work and that of his circle: David Inshaw, Simon Garden, Stewart Geddes, Stephen Jacobson and George Tute, all of whom are members of the RWA and distinguished painters in their different ways. Yet in the film they all acknowledge the influence of Alfred Stockham.
What is his ethos and where did it come from?
AS: ‘Born in London in 1933, I was blessed by stimulating visual richness in the stalls and decorated wagons of the East Lane Market where Mother’s family were traders, in the flags and regalia of Father’s life in the Royal Navy and in the many colourful events my grandfather took me to see. I have always been drawn to colour and pattern.
‘Visits to Father’s family brought me into the wonderful Surrey countryside with the majestic architecture of the hop gardens and the “mellow fruitfulness” of the vines. Holidays in the Norfolk Broads gave me an enduring fascination with sails in a green landscape.
‘Over many years, I have gradually refined my approach to 2D design, aware that true greatness lies in simplicity. My aim is to create an underlying visual dynamic. The poetry of the subject and the poetry of the structure support each other. The real or observed world and the subconscious dream world both play their part to make a painting sing.’
Alfred Stockham loved painting from his earliest years but he spent seven years in the Royal Navy before studying at Camberwell School of Art and the Royal College of Art where he was awarded a Silver Medal. He was a Rome Scholar and Grenada Arts Fellow at the University of York before 1968 when he took up a post as lecturer at Bristol Polytechnic (now the University of the West of England) where he became Head of Fine Art. He left to devote himself to painting full-time in 1988. Alfred was elected a full member of the Royal West of England Academy in 1993 and was Honorary Curator of their permanent collection from 2001 until he retired.
Still painting despite his illness, the clarity and contemplative power of his work seems only to increase with time. While in himself he remains as witty and perspicacious as ever. His work is in public collections throughout the UK and in private collections worldwide. Alfred Stockham’s work has shown around UK, Europe and the US including regularly at the RA Summer Exhibition. He has exhibited at Sladers Yard since 2008 where his recommendations have helped to shape the gallery.
‘Stockham is an accomplished colourist. He can make the oil paint glow like an icon by the subtle and judicious handling of tone… His colour can communicate every nuance of the hour or the season.’ Edward Phelps, Art Critic