Issue 39

June 2011

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Group Updates Cont’d

History of Art

After winter break we resumed in February looking at Impressionism and the influences that shaped the movement.  

Photography over time had changed painting. As its popularity increased – from 100,000 Daguerrotypes in Paris in 1849 to 105 million photos in existence in Britain in just 12 years, you could say it ‘took off’.  It changed the way artists worked in the studio:  there was less need for paid models, painters could take photos and colour them in, and use them for reference. It diminished demand for miniatures and portraits. In terms of composition, as the camera viewfinder restricts the view and cuts off edges, it looks very different from an Academic traditionally planned composition with a centre of interest and other rules.  The blurry images produced by the long exposure times in the early cameras gave an effect of movement in figures which some painters imitated, which is again different from the Academic standards with their fine brushwork and precise detail.  

Photography also changed war painting.  Photos of battle scenes were not as ‘heroic’ as the composed ordered scenes in Academic painting.

The impact of photography meant that art no longer had to be the mirror of nature, as the camera could record life more accurately.  

In 1854 a treaty opened Japan to trade, and artefacts and especially the Japanese woodcut prints with their unusual compositions, and colours and shapes greatly influenced the Impressionists.

The late 19th century also brought new ideas about colour theory, the colours in snow and shadows outdoors, and the newly available pre-mixed colours in portable tubes, allowing outdoor painting.

Our group leader Brian Souter also discussed the lives and backgrounds of Impressionist painters, so this little summary is just a taste of what the course has offered us this term.

 

Judy Muscarella

History, Modern

The Modern History group has now completed its spring sessions and David Davies hopes to run the course 'UK History 1945-1997' in the spring of 2012. Bookings can be made at the Open Day on 23 September 2011

 

David Davies

Italian Conversation

The next Italian Conversation class meeting will be as usual at the Conservative Club on Tuesday 7th June at 5pm.However in July we will meet for a more informal,social evening at L'Albero Delle Noci restaurant on Cheltenham Crescent,in fact on Tuesday 12th July at 7:30pm.

We will meet again at the Club in October on the first Tuesday of the month,4th October at 5pm.

 

Mike Streeton

Keep Fit

The summer term is in full swing and will continue until July 19th.  It continues to run on Tuesday afternoon from 2pm-3pm.  New members are always welcome to join us at any time in the term. Email:  for more information. The Autumn term will start on Tuesday 6th September.  PUT IT IN YOUR DIARY!

Knitting

The above group started last Autumn, and has been meeting every other week in one of the Leaders’ homes.

The purpose is a self-help group with members choosing to knit a personal item or to make something for charity.

At the moment most members have decided to knit items for  charity, using wool that has been donated. We have made blankets and other things  from patchwork squares, and  items for premature babies. We are also

making clothes and toys to give to the Shoe Box scheme for sending to Eastern European countries.

We are very grateful to members who have given us wool and would be very pleased to receive  more as our present stocks are running low. Contact

 

Audrey Tooley