Things are hotting up! I have heard of a Northumbrian with features akin to Brown, who may be willing to sit for me to establish some base characteristics – the Reiver physiognomy – to guide the work of the portrait head of Capability Brown.
Several plans are now fixed for next year’s roadshow, engaging the public with the developing clay.
Firstly, a gathering at National Trust Uppark on the South Downs on Sunday March 6th, of which more about this interesting Brown-linked landscape in a future post.
Secondly, Hampshire Cultural Trust are involved with two free entry Capability Brown exhibitions at Winchester Discovery Centre from 26 March 2016. Capability Brown: Master of the Landscape runs until 12th June, and Capability Brown: Making the Landscape runs until 15 May. The clay will be being worked on the afternoon of Thursday 31 March and present for the Private View.
I am also starting work on a block of red sandstone, after an interesting discussion with Anthony Wallersteiner, Headmaster at Stowe School – closely connected with an important period of Lancelot Brown’s life and one of his most celebrated landscapes. We will unveil the first terracotta head as well as a more abstract sculpture responding to all things Brownian in late May, to coincide with their Speech Day and the 26 May performance by The Fingask Follies. HA-HA! is Brown-themed for the Tercentenary and also celebrates 21 Seasons of their performances.
Next on the agenda? A trip to National Portrait Gallery in early December with Steffie Shields, landscape historian and Capability Brown specialist – and Susan Darling, Garden & Landscape Historian & CBF2016 Research Co-ordinator for London Parks & Gardens Trust.
We will all be looking closely at the portrait material on Brown in our national collection. Personally, a great spur to proceeding with the first claywork in the New Year!
image top: Richard Cosway’s sketch of Brown (pictured right) c. 1773