A Taste of What’s to come…

With the Creative Wiltshire & Swindon Project having only just got off the ground, I thought I’d share with you a few items from our currently limited stock of creative work to whet your appetite and, hopefully, open up the discussion as to just who and/or what you think we should be collecting!

Robin Tanner (1904-1988) from Kington Langley produced beautiful and unique prints. He was one of a number who turned their backs on the popular ‘en plein’ air etchings, fashionable in the 1920s. Many of Robin’s etchings were created at his house and were of local scenes, such as the wicket gate into Sydney’s wood where the renowned 19th century poet and clergyman Francis Kilvert often walked. Tanner was instrumental in bringing art and craft into schools after becoming a HM Inspector in 1935. He was widely recognised both as an exceptional teacher and talented etcher.

“I believe that the arts must be at the very centre, the core of our lives. I believe that if the proper dignity of every human being were respected and his or her native gifts well nourished and cherished we should then reach our full stature and come into our rightful heritage – and help others to theirs.”

This greetings card is an etching of St. Andrew’s Church at Brewardine, Herefordshire, produced by Robin Tanner. It is located in the Local Studies Historic Print and Photograph Collection at the Wiltshire & Swindon History Centre.

To find out more about Robin Tanner please visit our WSHC blog

Swindon’s Harold Dearden (1888- 1962) was an oil and watercolour painter. He became head of the Swindon Art School in 1920 and stayed there for 30 years. He was also President of the Swindon Artists’ Society for a time. This painting, c. 1960 is of Swindon Central Library, in oil on canvas.

(c) Swindon Art Gallery; Supplied by The Public Catalogue Foundation
Harold Dearden’s Swindon Central Library, c. 1960. From the Swindon Museum & Art Gallery Collection.

Walter G. Poole (1916 – 1988) was helped by Henry Moore to win a place at Chelsea School of Art. During the 1940s he became associated with the Neo-Romantics, particularly John Minton, Robert Colquhoun and MacBryde. The period 1940-1950 shows Poole to have become an innovative and influential artist. This oil on canvas is of the wartime aircraft factory in Blunsdon, painted in 1942.

(c) Swindon Art Gallery; Supplied by The Public Catalogue Foundation
Walter G. Poole’s Blunsdon aircraft factory, 1942. From the Swindon Museum & Art Gallery Collection.

Both form part of the collection at the Swindon Museum and Art Gallery.

… Meanwhile, we are looking forward to the many future acquisitions we hope to collect through our Heritage Lottery funding!

Julie Davis
Creative Wiltshire & Swindon Project Officer

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