Date Posted: 15th January 2018

Boat and sun; screenprint on coarse linen

With visitor numbers exceeding all expectations, Tullie House has decided to extend the Kelly retrospective by three weeks to Sunday 18th February. Many thanks to the lenders who have agreed to share their paintings a bit longer.
The Afternoon of Talks next Sunday has been completely booked up for some time with a long list of hopefuls on the reserve list.  As a small recompense I will be doing guided tours of the exhibition from 2.00 – 3.00 every Saturday afternoon from 27 January onwards until the end of the exhibition (27 January and 2nd, 10th and 17th February) These are free for ticket holders and will inevitably involve some anecdotes and stories as well as dealing with your questions.
I am also giving a talk at Words by the Water at Theatre by the lake Keswick at 4.00 on 14th March in the studio. Book for that NOW (017687 74411) so you aren’t disappointed. The illustrated talk – The Reluctant Exhibitionist – will explore why Percy Kelly was so retentive, reclusive and unwilling to exploit the considerable talent he was given at birth to enjoy a more comfortable life. I will talk about Kelly’s genius, his need to draw or paint every day, his female persona  Roberta and the absence of people in his work. I will talk about curating an exhibition 25 years after the artist’s death and what I learned in the process.
There will be a small exhibition of Kelly’s original prints running alongside the festival in the Circle and Mezzanine areas of the theatre. These will be for sale with profits going to the theatre.  Theatre by the Lake has been deemed the most idyllically situated in the country and I don’t think anyone would argue with that.  Having been to every play the theatre put on last year finishing with a fabulous production of The Secret Garden over the Christmas period they deserve our support.
I will give you more details of the exhibition in my next newsletter.

*‘Driggsby is coming’ I was told when I went into Tullie House last week and saw scaffolding going up in the foyer.  Driggsby is a 40 foot long Fin Whale whose body was washed up by the tide at Drigg on the West Cumbrian coast in 2014. His massive skeleton has been cleaned and reassembled and is now hovering high above the crowds in the reception area of the museum.  This is an additional bonus for those still pouring in to see the Kelly retrospective.