I came into the space the day before the exhibition opened – no-one else here and no information yet so I had to engage the brain to try to understand the background to the paintings, etc. in the first room, and assume that they are the work of Loren, daughter of Mary Currie, who’d been encouraged to paint by Annie Coultas. Three faces of Mary – I wonder if Loren painted the one on the left from the photograph that is reproduced in The Times, and the one on the right – herself? These three paintings are so charged with emotion : sadness and loss. Maybe the one in the middle is some sort of composite? Of herself and her mother? A woman looking back at the mother who was lost to her when she was 8? And what happened to Mary? 1954 – not executed? Or was she? This room is full of unanswered questions. Some tantalising pieces of information, some intriguing paintings – e.g. the person whose back is turned : not only in the canvas, and the markmaking, interesting to investigate up close, but from a distance the figure is shrouded in mystery ; is she (almost certainly a she) looking in a mirror, or out of a window, or through a door? No smiles. All looking out, lost, at the viewer, except the one man, consulting a book, but with a worried mien. The texture of the paint in all the paintings is wonderful. Beautiful colours, the greens behind the girl in the pink top holding the dolls, the browns and oranges behind the girl with the cigarette, the reds of the man’s top – the blues of his trousers, and the greens around them : so glad I had plenty of time to study them up close.
After spending so much time in the first room taking it all in, puzzling and enjoying, I didn’t have enough time to do justice to the work in the further room. I take it the three landscapes in oils are by the printmaker : I liked the top one particularly : seascape maybe? With a wonderful empty sky – reminded me of Benjamin Britten’s “Sea Interludes” from opera Peter Grimes : empty, desolate, starkly beautiful. The framing of these three paintings is excellent, complements the paintings and their colours perfectly. The prints – love the wacky spacing: dunno what the significance is (not enough time to study etc) but like it (the spacing) and them (the prints). The two lightbox thingies weren’t switched on, so hope to see these at a later date. Good Luck with the exhibition, and thank you!