Arthur Streeton – A master impressionist

australia-event-banner-v2

Earlier this month, we attended a wonderful exhibition at The National Gallery titled ‘Australia’s Impressionists’ which runs to 26th March 2017. This is a relatively small exhibition, but expertly curated and features work by four Australian artists – Tom Roberts, Charles Conder, John Russell and Arthur Streeton. Between them, these four created a new artistic movement in Australia based on what they had seen in France and produced a huge combined body of work that represents the very best of impressionist painting from the prodigious talents that Roberts, Conder and Russell are, it was the work of Arthur Streeton (1867-1943) that captured our attention.

This from The National Gallery’s web page summarises his life.

“Streeton’s artistic training began aged 15, with night classes in design at Melbourne’s National Gallery School, while he worked as an office clerk and, later, as an apprentice lithographer. He read amateur art manuals imported from Europe and America that encouraged painting en plein air.

 While painting at Mentone Beach, south of Melbourne, Streeton met Tom Roberts (1856–1931), who invited him to join artists’ camps that he had helped found in the bush near Box Hill, to the west of the city. Together with Roberts and Charles Conder (1868–1909), Streeton helped stage the ‘9 by 5 Impression Exhibition‘ in Melbourne in 1889, which served as something of a manifesto for this new generation of Australian painters who were embracing the looser, more open techniques of Impressionism.

Streeton moved to Sydney in 1890, after the Art Gallery of New South Wales purchased a large canvas of his, ‘Still glides the stream, and shall for ever glide’ (1890). He was the first Australian-born artist to have a work exhibited at London’s Royal Academy – ‘Golden Summer, Eaglemont’ (1889) – but when he moved to London in 1897 he struggled to gain recognition. Nonetheless, he stayed in England for around thirty years, sending work back to Australia.

During the First World War, Streeton served as a hospital orderly in London, and then as an official war artist with the Australian army. He was awarded a knighthood in 1937 for services to art.”

Streeton produced a tremendous body of work during his lifetime, everyone of which merits individual study. But for now we have selected five paintings from the exhibition for specific comment and appreciation. As you study them, take in the balance in the composition, the great sense of location and climate, and the wonderful colour palettes he uses, all of which can inform ebullient design solutions today.

1280px-arthur_streeton_-_golden_summer_eaglemont_-_google_art_project

‘Golden Summer, Eaglemont’ 1889. Oil on canvas.

This painting is many things, but we specifically love the colour palette Streeton uses. Vivid blues and golds which he describes as the ‘nature’s scheme of colour in Australia’. The depth of detail, the tranquil setting and the mastery of light and shade all stand out.

Artist : Ena Joyce (Australia, b.1925) Title : Date : (circa 1949) Medium Description: oil on plywood Dimensions : Credit Line : Purchased 1949 Image Credit Line : Accession Number : 832

‘Fire’s on’ Lapstone Tunnel 1891 oil on canvas.

Again that wonderful colour palette stands out. Up close, his use of a 1″ brush in 1-2″ strokes to build up the tonal range of the blue sky is masterful. The vantage point produces a high horizon allowing an exquisite interpretation of sunlight and shade, as seen in Golden Summer. You almost want to reach out and touch the rocks on the left!

arthur-streeton-ariadne

‘Ariadne’ 1895 oil on wood panel.

Blue and pink dominate the colours here. Ariadne appears to almost float on the sand. With her head lowered into her hands, her sorrow easily felt. Again the sense of sunshine and warm climate is projected so well.

704

‘Blue Pacific’ 1890 oil on canvas.

This image doesn’t do justice to the tonal range and brush work that Streeton achieved. The light and dark golds used to pull out the centrepiece sandstone cliff face are superbly constructed. Again the colour palette is excellent and exuberant.

Artist : Arthur Streeton (Australia, b.1867, d.1943) Title : Date : 1893 Medium Description: oil on canvas Dimensions : Credit Line : Gift of Lady Denison 1942 Image Credit Line : Accession Number : 7209

‘The railway station, Redfern’ 1893 oil on canvas.

Finally, we bring this one into the selection because of its juxtaposition in climatic terms to the prior four. Here, grey skies, wind and rain predominate instead of warm sunshine. The composition, with all the detail clustered in the top half of the painting, and just the surface treatment and a lone be-coated person and their shadow occupying the lower half, represent such an eye for the scene. It is reported that he painted this in around three hours…

Celebrate the work of Arthur Streeton. He has many lessons to teach modern designers.

Written by Paul Smith for Bethvictoria.com

Continue Reading

The perfect study …

4dc269fd167cd2c42497099605de9c50

…to beat the back to work blues

For this post we started by collating a load of images of studies that we could work in. They mostly consist of a lot of light and storage options. It is so easy to let piles build up on your desk and the light to go down whilst working through to the night so hopefully this will help!

untitled-1

Whether your study is just a simple desk or a whole room the items we have found will add a little extra organisation, motivation or fun to the space. Hopefully making work deadlines or exam prep a little more do-able.

untitled-1-recovered

Find them here:

1) Shelf support  2) Eames style chair  3) Retro letter peg board  4) Marble table lamp  5) LILLASEN  6) EKBY ALEX  7) Retro desk lamp  8) Steel and wood floor lamp  9) Wire wall grid  10) Loft desk   11) Wire magazine rack  12) Weekly planner wall sticker

Bethvictoria.com

All images collected from Pinterest or listed product pages.
Continue Reading

2017 Homely home tips

fd71f6b904c49580451db3c73892896e

For this set of tips we’re starting at the front door.

Processed with VSCO with m5 preset

1) Christmas, New Year and winter time normally means clutter, winter dirt and leaves. Keeping the front door area and hall clear will make arriving home easy and something to look forward to and give guests a great first impression. Plants in the hallway are a great way to add colour and freshness to space.

0d5fb5182b5a173377686e55177831e6

2) Eye lines. Statement pieces or vibrantly painted walls can work as a great way to lead you through a house. This idea guides people into a certain room or space using their eyes and makes them want to stay and explore a little longer.

d3bd4df81b52b0755f648008d149d011

3) Plants, plants and more plants. We’ve definitely said this before. Plants are a great way to get colour, textures and shapes into your home. They also keep the spaces fresh and airy.

30096dbc1b91a738f8881b1228bbf2b4

4) Good smells. Keep the house smelling fresh and cozy. Whilst its still (sort of) the season light any festive candles that you’ve got or been given or get baking.

2f219222969e979ff4a590ebaee05ba1

5) Make it yours with small unique decorations and deign details. For example, put your own artwork on the walls or items that remind you of a good time or childhood memory.

Making something homely takes all of your senses. Not just snuggling under a warm blanket. So with these tips hopefully you can hit all five and feel homely from the time you see your front door.

Bethvictoria.com

All pictures found on Pinterest.
Continue Reading

Baby showers!

bogus-facebook-message-warns-cutest-baby-comp-images-being-misused-ztguhh-clipart

With a baby coming to the family we wanted to throw a cute and fun baby shower and heres how we did it!

baby-shower2

All images in mood-board found on Pinterest.

With the ideas above collected from Pinterest we set about making the surprise party. Everything we chose was simple easy and games that could be played whilst everyone got to talk and nibble at the afternoon tea that we also put on.

6

A little birthday cake that we made for the day. Half chocolate and half vanilla sponge on the inside with a Stork flying over clouds on top.

7

So that Dad-to-be was involved we put together a all things useful nappy changing tool kit and got guests to write a inspirational/funny note to go in the box.

3

The sandwiches and scones set up on the table. Minimal balloons and bunting to decorate the space.

4

The gift table! Using IKEA boxes to make more space and more of a feature of the gifts that were given.

1

When the guests had drawn/written on their bibs they were hung up to create more bunting and an extra personal touch.

2

Not sure tasting the nasty nappies contents was a good choice but Mum-to-be went for that tactic.

15450933_10157855050845125_1254858376_n

Finally the party favours! The little man arrived yesterday (13 days late!) and we have popped the corn in celebration… and some Prosecco.

Everyone had a lot of fun and Mum-to-be was spoiled perfectly.

Bethvictoria.com

Continue Reading

The Design Museum, London

img_7835

We went to visit the new design museum. It used to be housed in a building by the Thames and Tower Bridge but has now re-opened in the old Commonwealth Institute which has been renovated by John Pawson.

img_7800

The space has one permanent exhibition, two spaces for temporary exhibitions as well as a restaurant, cafe and two shops. Going into the space the staff were extremely welcoming and all dressed in aprons like baristas… or elves. Going further into the space you are confronted with a massive void all the way to the roof.

img_7818

img_7815

img_7821

On the third floor is the free permanent exhibition. You’re greeted by a large changing sign showing the name of the exhibition designed by Studio Myerscough. Designer Maker User shows 1000 plus items of 20th and 21st century design. Which is great if you have the time and patience to read all the little bits of information and look at all the items then this is a great exhibition. To us though it was a crammed experience with one design and text drowning and being drowned by the next. I didn’t know where to look, and between moving out the way for people to walk past and not getting distracted by the next visual, I only really looked at the start object and walked through the rest. (Plus couldn’t get far enough away to fit everything into a photograph!)

img_7801  img_7804

img_7807  img_7808

Overall other than the overwhelming squished display the architecture of the building was pretty nice. A great space to look up and admire… but maybe not the most useable. Still worth a visit, we may not have enjoyed it that much, but you may do!

img_7824

img_7826

img_7831

img_7829

Bethvictoria.com

All Photographs ©Bethvictoria.com

Continue Reading

Minimal motivational design inspiration

ryan-mcarthur-12-e1430204576666

These minimalist posters by Ryan McArthur are beautifully simplistic ways of getting inspirational messages from the masters of life and design into the world. The simple ‘less is more’ designs cleverly convey each message in the illustrations. Here are a selection of the posters that relate specifically to the design world. Enjoy!

unknown

0face0aef50642805ecd170145b5aebe

44286413120

famous-quotes-illustrations-poster-minimalistic-designs-12

famous-quotes-illustrations-poster-minimalistic-designs-2

98518f2f259ae0155c06b4c668c74d61

famous-quotes-illustrated-with-minimalist-designs-my-modern-metropolis-1396359281kgn48

Bethvictoria.com

Continue Reading

Christmas gift ideas for the home

normal_wine-teacup-and-saucer

untitled-1

Here is a first collection of gift ideas that can be given this christmas… or kept for yourself!

The cozy chunky throw is perfect for these cold winter nights and why not add some mulled wine in the tea cup to make it extra christmassy. The personalised polar bear tree decorations would be the perfect gift for a family.

Find the items here:
1) 5×7″ Frame  2) 4×6″ Frame 3) 8×10″ Frame 4) Gold Elephant candle 5) N O E L  6) Wine Cooler 7) Lightbulb vase 8) Wall cabinet  9) Book succulents 10) Chunky throw  11) Wine tea cup 12) Polar Bears

Thanks for reading!

Bethvictoria.com

Continue Reading

A Urban Outfitters Home Wish List

5520830960104_014_b

We love pretty much everything that the Urban Outfitters home section has to offer. But we’ve narrowed it down to five that we really like. UO is pretty pricey but sometimes the sale gives you a good chance of getting some of their products into your home!

First is this Eyelash Fringe Duvet Cover. 

This soft cotton cozy bed cover is half price at the moment and looks extremely comfortable. (Note it comes slightly cheaper in grey too)

5532992530061_066_b  5532992530061_066_d

A Nelson Geometric Console Table.

This metal and wooden side table has various uses and because of its simple sleek design works in any room of the house.

5520830960104_014_f  5520830960104_014_g

Letter Light Box

Perfect in any room of the home or as a present. Write any message you want on the box and let it glow.

5522405810019_000_b  5522405810019_000_d

Succulent Tea Lights

Cute little tea lights to add colour and light to any room.

5558094970004_038_b  5558094970004_038_e

A Peg Board

A fun way to keep notes and lists to hand. This would work great in a kitchen or work space environment.

5527314360100_001_d  5527314360100_001_b

Happy Shopping!

Bethvictoria.com

Continue Reading

London Exhibitions to see

qkij9wy1qygjhahijv2t

Here are four current exhibitions in London that we think are worth a visit

Donna Huanca – Scar Cymbals

At Zabludowicz Collection between 29th September to 18 December

image

Daily performances by painted models work to create installations within this chapel space.

“Huanca’s work draws attention to the body and in particular the skin, which is simultaneously the surface on which our personhood is inscribed and the surface through which we experience the world around us. Huanca examines conventions of behaviour in our interaction with bodies in space and the invisible histories that are accumulated through those gestures. By exposing the naked body and concealing it under layers of paint, cosmetics and latex, Huanca’s performers confront our instinctive reactions to flesh, which becomes both a familiar, decorative object and an abstract, inaccessible subject.”  – Source

Abstract Expressionism

At the RA between 24th Sept t0 2nd Jan

modazjgm49yxa6brtyad

Franz Kline, Vawdavitch, 1955

American art from 1950s New York featuring art by De Kooning, Rothko and Pollock. Large scale, intense and expressive this style of painting gave the method a new leash of confidence.

“It was a watershed moment in the evolution of 20th-century art, yet, remarkably, there has been no major survey of the movement since 1959.” Taken from RA website

Antony Gormley – Fit

At White Cube Gallery, Bermondsey between 30th Sept to 6th Nov

72529f00d603ccd15e36758774531c5a_0

“Gormley has configured the gallery space into 15 chambers to create a series of dramatic physiological encounters in the form of a labyrinth. Visitors are faced with a choice of passage through differently sized, uniquely lit spaces where each room challenges or qualifies the experience of the last.” – Source

Not long left on this one go see it soon!

Beyond Caravaggio

At the National Gallery between 12th Oct and 15th Jan.

caravaggio-event-banner-675x285

Exploring the influence of Caravaggio on painters and artists that followed him.

“After the unveiling of Caravaggio’s first public commission in 1600, artists from across Europe flocked to Rome to see his work. Seduced by the pictorial and narrative power of his paintings, many went on to imitate their naturalism and dramatic lighting effects. Paintings by Caravaggio and his followers were highly sought after in the decades following his untimely death at the age of just 39. By the mid-17th century, however, the Caravaggesque style had fallen out of favour and it would take almost three hundred years for Caravaggio’s reputation to be restored and for his artistic accomplishments to be fully recognised.” – Source

Bethvictoria.com

Continue Reading