Fred Cuming RA
with Robin Rae, Alfred Stockham and ceramics by Richard Batterham
17 November 2018 to 20 January 2019
Fred Cuming RA has devoted his life to expressing fleeting impressions of the world around him. He captures the moods and atmospheres generated by landscape, still life or interior. He often paints the coast of the south of England, around Rye where he lives and also many visits to the Dorset coast.
Fred Cuming was born in 1930 in London and trained at the Sidcup School of Art between 1945 and 1949. After National Service he studied at the Royal College of Art for four years and was awarded the Abbey Travel Scholarship to visit Rome. In 1969 he was elected an Associate Member of the Royal Academy, becoming a full member in 1974. At that time, he was the yougest member ever elected. Fred has also been a member of the New English Art Club since 1960.
Fred has exhibited widely since his first one-man show at Thackeray Gallery, London, and has work in private and public collections internationally. In 2001 he was given the honour of being the ‘Featured Artist‘ in the Royal Academy of Arts Summer Exhibition, with an entire gallery of his own. In 2004, he was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of the Arts at the University of Kent in Canterbury.
Fred Cuming has said, “I am not interested in pure representation, my work is about responses to the moods and atmospheres generated by landscape, still life or interior. I am interested in the developments of 20th Century painting, in abstraction, that has been present in all movements, and in new ideas and art forms. My philosophy is that the more I work the more I discover. Drawing is essential as a tool of discovery; skill and mastery of technique are also essential, but only as a vocabulary and a means towards an idea. I struggle to keep an open mind.”
With an everyday scene, through his subtle approach and through focusing on light and tone, he lends it an elevated atmosphere. His subjects are often oriented around the mood of the sea, skies, harbours, marshland, ships and figures wandering on beaches; Fred is constantly absorbing everything that is around him. Equally, interiors and still lifes are often sources of inspiration. He loves to paint the Dorset coastline especially around Lyme Regis. he has shown at Sladers Yard once before in 2012.
Fred lives with Audrey, his wife of nearly fifty years, near Rye in East Sussex. They have two children and five grandchildren.