The waves of inspiration that have kept coming to these ancient shoresby Emma Crichton-Miller / September 12, 2013 / Leave a comment
In 2000, a walker on Happisburg beach, Norfolk, picked up a flint handaxe, worked around 700,000 years ago. In 1930, on the same beach, Henry Moore found an ironstone pebble, from which he carved a reclining figure. This autumn, these two objects will open a landmark celebration of the art of East Anglia, featuring paintings by Claude Lorrain, John Sell Cotman and Maggi Hambling, Roman bronzes and fine English medieval silver.
This exhibition honours an engagement with art that dates back to the earliest human settlers in Britain. Whether the artworks were inspired by East Anglia, made by East Anglian artists or collected by such East Anglian grandees as Thomas Coke or Robert Walpole, the exhibition destroys the region’s reputation as a backwater. Its watercolour skies and rugged beaches have inspired successive generations of artists, both local and international —including Brazilian artist Ana Maria Pacheco, whose vast sculpture, The Longest Journey (1994), exhibited here, incorporates a fishing boat from the Norfolk Broads.
Masterpieces: Art and East Anglia is on show at the Sainsbury Centre for Visual Arts until 24th February 2014