The Oil Gallery is on Hungerford’s Bridge Street – and from Friday, December 8 to Sunday, December 24, it will be open house for visitors to see a mixed exhibition of works by some of the artists Justin Cook has discovered and championed during the year.
Since giving up the Arrow Cars service he founded and deciding not to continue as a Marlborough Town Councillor, Justin Cook has been travelling in search of new and exciting artists. He has found several up-and-coming stars of the art world to add to those he had already been exhibiting.
Yukimasa Ida was born in 1990 and studied at Tokyo University of the Arts. He is the youngest artist ever to be asked to submit work to the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation – for the Foundation’s annual auction in support of the actor’s wildlife and climate change charitable work.
Earlier this year, he came straight from the 2017 DiCaprio Foundation auction in France to spend a four week residency deep in Savernake Forest. There he painted thirty new works for his debut international show organised by Justin Cook and entitled Bespoke.
Why? The exhibition was held in the up-market Labassa Woolfe tailoring salon in London’s Fitzrovia. It was a big selling exhibition.
While in Britain he painted from life, using only a palette knife, a remarkable view of a young colt by the stallion Age of Chivalry. He turns his very special variety of abstract realism to all manner of subjects. The star of the new Oil Gallery exhibition will almost certainly be his Sorrow 1.
You can weave your own narrative around this moving image – perhaps a young Second World War soldier who has been home on leave and is now leaving his sweetheart or wife to return to war…
The image has immense strength and – at the same time – great tenderness. The painting epitomises Yukimasa Ida’s interest in the Japanese concept of Ichi-go ichi-e – treasured moments or once-in-a-lifetime events.
The Oil Gallery exhibition will include new works by Luigi Christopher Veggetti Kanku, who had his first British exhibition at Oil Gallery. His work proved very popular with local art enthusiasts.
Another and very well established artist represented in the exhibition is Walter Furlan. Born near Venice in 1931, he became apprenticed to one of that city’s famous glassworks. He learnt a special technique of sculpting glass with vibrant colours.
Picasso allowed Furlan to use his name in his pieces – after his work had shown Picasso’s influence and the two had artists met. Photographed above, this piece – a homage to Picasso with added fruit and with Furlan’s trademark vivid colours – takes a three dimensional look at one of Picasso’s great cubist portraits – Omaggio a Picasso con capello frutta (2016).
It has the fun and enticing look of a very expensive, very well mixed cocktail!
Justin is now Contributing Art Editor to a London magazine. The exhibition is open at the Oil Gallery, 5A Bridge Street, Hungerford from December 8-24 – 11am each day until 5pm.
Photograph below: Justin Cook on a visit to Berlin – in front of a large work by Iranian-born artist Sara Issakharian who is now based in the United States. Her work has been shown before at Oil Gallery. [Click on images to enlarge them.]