In May of 2005, my husband the photographer Andrew Sanderson and myself were invited to visit Mary Fedden in her studio. We arrived two months later and she kindly showed us around her place, provided us with tea and allowed us to photograph anywhere we liked. Later, Andrew made a book of the pictures which he gave to me as a present.
I discovered the letter from Mary yesterday whilst spring cleaning and though it might be of interest.
The letter reads;
Dear Andrew, I really love your photographs. I love the way you make beautiful + significant the most trivial – seeming things – your observation is perfect.
Thank you so much for your book. I’m touched that your wife thought my surroundings would interest you. When you come to London, I would be happy for you to come + take some photographs.
I certainly have plenty of insignificant objects for you to transform!
Do give me a ring when you plan to come, + we will fix a date.
With best wishes to you both
Your children are beautiful!
Before she died I managed to visit her on three occasions and she was always very welcoming and friendly.
In my paintings over the years, a particular motif might hold my attention over a number of paintings. It may have been wooden animals, feathers, book covers, sailboats or certain ceramics. Recently, I have found that birds have appeared quite a bit and the flower which I’m most drawn to right now is the Crocus. I find the colours so joyful, and at a time where everything else is so grey and we are all wishing for spring to arrive, I think they bring a little brightness.
Last week I went with my husband to the opening of Angie Lewin‘s solo show at the Yorkshire Sculpture Park. The exhibition is called a natural line, Angie has taken inspiration from YSP’s historic 500 – acre landscape to create a series of new prints and watercolours alongside newly designed products such as mugs and bags. The exhibition continues until 23rd February 2014. It is well worth a visit.
Here are a couple of new paintings, done in the last couple of weeks. One of them includes a book cover originally designed by Enid Marx, and is part of an ongoing series of paintings depicting beautiful book covers from my collection.
My husband Andrew Sanderson recently photographed my Staffordshire figure of Robin Hood and it inspired me to include it in one of my larger paintings. My children have ridiculed my choice of ornament ever since I bought it from a local junk shop a few months back. I originally bought it for a bit of fun, but have grown rather fond of it. This then led me to look at other pieces in this style. I found, and painted two Staffordshire cats and have done the drawings for lions and horses, but have not had time to paint these yet. I am sure there will be more curious finds to inspire soon.
A few years ago I had the chance to visit the home of Mary Fedden, an artist whose work I have admired for many years. This visit, with my husband the photographer Andrew Sanderson, was actually my third visit to Mary’s house. Mary allowed us to take pictures anywhere we liked and consequently we got some great shots. We made a book about her place called ‘Visiting Mary’ and it is available on Blurb.com
I got to look round her studio and see her sketchbooks;