David Bomberg, Henri Gaudier-Brzeska and Mark Gertler are amongst the seventeen artists featured in Counterpoint - Stanley Spencer and his Contemporaries, an exhibition that seeks to offer new perspectives on Spencer’s work and contextualise his place in the history of Modern British art.
The presentation, which will mark the 60th anniversary of the artist’s death, is comprised of thirty-nine works – twenty from the Stanley Spencer Gallery and nineteen spectacular loans from the Ingram Collection. The loans include works by many of the leading lights of twentieth century British art, as well as highly deserving pieces by less well-known gures such as Glyn Philpot and Dod Proctor. All help us to understand how Spencer’s work ts into the canon of Modern British art at the beginning of the 20th century.
Says the show’s curator, Amanda Bradley: ‘Early twentieth century Britain saw the coming of age of a singular group of artists. Some shared the background of their arts training at the Slade School of Art. Others were less directly connected to each other, but through the lens of their collective talents we experience seismic historic events (two world wars), and vast social and economic change. Each of the artists represented here experienced and portrayed this shared history with a particular vision and expression. The exhibition’s title - Counterpoint - re ects the complementary and diverse artistic talents across the works on show.’
Counterpoint is Stanley Spencer Gallery’s rst group exhibition for many years – hitherto it has only shown works by Spencer – and is divided into seven thematic strands: ‘The Slade’, ‘The Great War’, ‘Religion’, ‘Landscape’, ‘The Artist’s Muse’, ‘The Long Weekend’ and ‘World War II’.
‘The Slade’ features a lithograph made from Spencer’s self-portrait of 1913, captured when he was in his early twenties. Also included is Maternity, a bronze gure by Henri Gaudier-Brzeska, a self-portrait woodcut by Roger Fry, a Vorticist- inspired drawing, Bargee Family (1919-20), by David Bomberg and Mark Gertler’s The Doll (1914).