After lunch in Fen Ditton and a visit to the Fen Ditton Gallery, we went to see Stuart Pearson Wright’s exhibition Halfboy in the new Heong Gallery at Downing in the space which Caruso St. John have created out of the old bicycle sheds.
I have admired Stuart’s work ever since he won the BP Travel Award in 1998 and embarked on a big narrative painting, Tisbury Court 1999, A Tragicomedy which was dismissed by the Slade as illustration, but bought by Jeffrey Archer. In 2001, he won first prize for his surreal picture of the Presidents of the British Academy, Gallus Gallus, which he had very effectively enlivened by adding a large dead chicken basing the composition on a roof boss in Norwich Cathedral.
His current exhibition is autobiographical, based on a cache of photographs which he discovered of his childhood:-
It follows his youth and adulthood, in a combination of fantasy, memory, melancholy and close pictorial observation which are very characteristic:-