Date Posted: 22nd August 2020

Parton looking north

I’ve been spending time in my wardrobe again. Sad isn’t it? Due to popular request Michael crept up and took a photo of me in there. It’s the first image on this next story. You will see it’s quite cosy.

The feedback in response to my first venture into the wonderful world of video making was so positive that it’s become the first of a series.  Rosalie’s Bequest seemed to strike a chord with so many of you art lovers so each of the series will be a story about a work of art that I’ve encountered over the last X? decades.

This next one – number 2 of the series -  is about a painting I’ve never owned, never sold but it changed my life.  Without it I would never have created a gallery in Castlegate House or anywhere else.

 Like the Anne Redpath painting  in Rosalie’s Bequest,  Parton looking North has spent a lot of its life in a museum  store away from the public eye. But, like the Redpath, it can be seen on request at The Beacon in Whitehaven  if you give them  enough warning - after all these things do belong to us all. (*the Redpath painting Harmony in Red can be seen on request at Keswick museum)

​ Here is the link. It is about 50 minutes long and tells the story of my long pursuit of artist and recluse Percy Kelly. ​

The band of Kelly collectors and followers is growing all the time so there are quite a few people who haven’t heard the story.  It began in 1986 with my search for an artist called Percy Kelly  a postman from Workington and ended years later with my discovery of an artist called Roberta Penelope Kelly living as a recluse in a small hamlet in Norfolk. He had come there via a sub post office in Great Broughton, a cottage in Allonby, a flat in Whitehaven, a gamekeeper’s cottage at Levens near Kendal and  near derelict house in St Davids in Pembrokeshire. No wonder it took me a long time to find him.    

Not all the stories will be about works by Kelly. There will be stories about paintings by L S Lowry, Mary Fedden, Charles Oakley. Sandra Blow,  Bill Peascod, Sheila  Fell and many more.

Despite lock down and social distancing the release of a new collection of Kelly’s small works in June  has been very popular.  You have viewed them on line, in our garden, on the porch and in my office more recently when the weather has been unkind.  (I have sent some unseen, by courier) It has been a pleasure though to meet up with so many of you -  under strict guidelines of course.

You can see what has gone and what is left in the GALLERY section of the Kelly web site in the box marked FOR SALE. The interesting thing for me has been seeing what you thought you wanted and asked to be reserved until you could venture out to see them.  What you actually bought when you got here and saw them in the flesh was more often than not quite different. The main thing though is that everyone went away happy – some with more than one.

So enjoy video no 2 and keep a watch out for more. (and  get in touch through this web site. if you want to buy a Kelly)