In today's broadcast, we highlight three artists and the subjects that have fascinated them of late – from pop master and East-coast cowboy Larry Rivers (1923-2002) on the Boston Massacre and gallery artist Christopher P. Wood on his new China blue paintings to potter Lisa Hammond's favourite new decorative 'horse eye' motif.
Larry RiversAttaching a singularly defining label to Larry Rivers has remained an elusive task for many who have tried to contextualize his over 50 year contribution to the arts.Rivers was an accomplished Jazz musician, a painter, sculptor, poet, actor, television personality, filmmaker, an MC at nightclubs, a popular personality on the lecture circuit, author and teacher. He’s been aptly referred to as “a renaissance man,” but perhaps he’s most often recognized and ironically at times equally underappreciated as one of if not the key founding fathers of Pop Art. Andy Warhol never made it a secret that he was influenced by Rivers art, but in perhaps a more revealing quote from the book “Popism” Warhol recognizes Rivers unique persona as an influential ingredient in the development of Pop Art. Warhol said, “Larry’s painting style was unique – it wasn’t Abstract Expressionism and it wasn’t Pop, it fell into the period in between. But his personality was very Pop.”
Christopher P. WoodBorn in Leeds in 1961, Christopher P. Wood is a painter and printmaker of atmospheric and enigmatic imagery. He gained a master’s degree in Fine Art from Chelsea College of Art in 1986 and has consistently had successful exhibitions in the UK and abroad. His work is held in numerous public and private collections including Harrogate Art Gallery, Leeds City Council and the Unilever Collection.Wood’s work features magical, symbolic figures and signs, what the artist calls an exploration of the interior world of the imagination. He spends a great deal of time priming his canvases, often four times over, and builds his pictures in such a way that once begun each must be finished in a single sitting, an emotionally draining task to say the least.
Lisa HammondAfter completing a 1 year foundation course and a 3 year diploma in ceramics at Medway College of Art, Lisa Hammond set up her first pottery in 1980. Aged only 23 she spent the next 5 years establishing Greenwich Pottery Workshop in London. In 1982 as a teacher at Goldsmith’s College Hammond was able to introduce soda glaze into her work, its pitted texture still a feature of her pots today.As well as exhibiting all over the UK, Hammond has had several very successful shows in Japan. She spent 9 months in Sydney, Australia and has held teaching posts at Goldsmith’s College and Camberwell College of Art. She has been elected member of the Craft Potter’s Association and had her work shown in the National Gallery, London and The Tate, Liverpool.