paintings from the Royal Academy having failed to get them in to the Summer exhibition.
I had a look round the show and saw some nice things - there are always nice things at the Summer Exhibition - but I also saw a lot of horrible things (and there are always those, too, at the Summer Exhibition). For that is the nature of the beast - what is horrible to me, is presumably work of immense charm and vitality to the judges. Or at least I have to believe so, given that the work was preferred to mine.
The hang was even more perverse than last year with paintings inexplicably hoisted twenty feet up in the air with nothing beneath them but open wall or open door. There seemed even more open wall than last year - but maybe that is another effect of not getting work accepted: the bare wall taunts. Even bare wall was preferable to your dull and derivative daub, it seems to say.
I groaned inwardly when I encountered the first large photograph because photography seems to belong somewhere else somehow and there are already many opens that feature photography, but I have to say that I thought many of the best things there were photographs.
The Summer Exhibition is infuriating and exasperating and exciting and rather wonderful, simply because it doesn't quite have its finger on the pulse and is such a weird assortment in there. But there are few places in the world where Sunday painters rub shoulders with struggling professionals and students with world renown artists and I hope it goes on and on forever. It is a fine thing and I bear it no ill will at all for overlooking my genius this year.
There's always next year....