Chiswick artists in Royal Watercolour society auction this weekend

Image above: Ferry by Paul Babb

A chance to acquire some beautiful artworks at very reasonable prices

Several Chiswick and Hammersmith residents are taking part in an auction this weekend for the Royal Watercolour Society. There is some lovely work on show by 183 very talented and sought-after artists from all over the country, some members of the Royal Academy, who have each donated a picture to raise funds for the society’s new Whitcomb Street Gallery.

Francis Bowyer and Liz Butler, both members of the Royal Watercolour Society, have helped organise the online auction.

All the entries are A5 artworks on paper. The auction opens for bids at 6pm on Thursday 13 October and is available to view in person at the Whitcomb Street Gallery, 3 – 5 Whitcomb Street, London WC2H 7HA on Saturday 15 and Sunday 16 October from 11am – 5pm. Bids close online at 8pm on Sunday 16 October.

Image above: Sailing boat in the mist; Francis Bowyer

Frances Bowyer, Liz Butler, Sir Peter Blake, Cressida Cowell

Francis Bowyer PPRWS NEAC is a past president of the Royal Watercolour Society and a member of the New English Art Club. With his late brother Jason and father William RA the Bowyer family are well known as successful professional artists who have lived in Chiswick for many years.

Liz Butler RWS sells her work at Bankside Gallery. Last year showed six of her paintings in an exhibition about a year in the life of the Chelsea Physic Garden and her beautiful, delicate paintings of flowers have been used to promote the Chiswick Flower Market.

Other Chiswick residents taking part in the auction are Sir Peter Blake, Ingram Pinn, Glynis Porter and Paul Babb.

Sir Peter Blake CBE RDI RA is the pop artist best known as the co-creator of the sleeve design for the Beatles’ album Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. His other works include the covers for two of The Who’s albums, the cover of the Band Aid single Do They Know It’s Christmas? and the Live Aid concert poster.

More recently he designed a collage of the Chiswick Empire House theatre for the Chiswick Timeline mural on Turnham Green Terrace.

Cressida Cowell, the author of the very popular series of children’s books How To Train Your Dragon lives in Hammersmith and takes part in the Chiswick Book Festival each year.

The auction represents an opportunity to buy a very special piece of art reasonably cheaply.

Image above: How To Train Your Dragon – Cressida Cowell; Swan feather – Liz Butler

Royal Watercolour Society

The RWS is a charity which promotes the knowledge and continuation of water based medium on paper, they hold an annual open exhibition, providing opportunity for artists (RWS members prohibited) to exhibit and win prizes. They also run workshops for families and young people.

Past members include: Sir Lawrence Alma Tadema, Edward Ardizonne, Edward Bawden, Dame Laura Knight, Singer Sargent, John Sell Cotman, John Piper, William Holman Hunt, Edward Burne Jones, Samuel Palmer and David Remfry.

The society was founded in 1804 by a few artists who painted in watercolour and felt discriminated against by the Royal Academy, the only professional artistic body of the day. They met and exhibited at the Stratford Coffee House in Oxford Street.

In 1823 they were offered the lease of 6 Pall Mall East, where they remained for the next 115 years. Founder members include William Henry Gilpin, Cornelius and John Varley.

Whitcomb Street Gallery

In 2013, Thomas Plunkett, then the RWS President was approached by a professional researcher, who had been commissioned to carry out a search by developers on a property in Whitcomb Street, WC2.

During his research he found that this was the same building previously occupied by the RWS. Francis Bowyer and Thomas Plunkett met with the researcher and the developers and the RWS were offered gallery space within this new development.

Funding is still needed to enable the Toyal Watercolour Society to provide climate and light controlled exhibition space for exhibiting watercolours, and a safe space to house their historic Diploma collection of paintings and archive.

They would also like to be able to provide a study centre in their Whitcomb Street Gallery for students, educators, scholars, collectors, researchers, and art lovers with an interest in watercolour.

Be Part of Art – Browse the work

Called ‘Be Part of Art 2’ the work in the auction is available to view online here: Be Part of Art 2.

Read more stories on The Chiswick Calendar

See also: Chiswick In Pictures exhibition – Clayton hotel

See also: Film star Sarah Miles makes surprise guest appearance at Chiswick In Film festival

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