On Monday I visited Lincoln with a friend to see a V&A travelling exhibition ‘Modern Masters of Print’ at the Usher Art Gallery which is now part of ‘The Collection’ , just itself + the museum really . The pieces were in 2 rooms with the usual subdued lighting making it difficult to read information ; Matisse was with Salvador Dali and Andy Warhol with Picasso .
As we came in to the first room there were 3 prints of this model in different poses ( this was the 2nd ) – later on we thought at least one of the nudes was also her . I think of Matisse as a pattern maker and colourist so it was instructive to see so much black & white linework . He is at least as good a draughtsman as Picasso or Dali and like many , I find his rendering of women more sympathetic .
The Dali prints were from commissions ; a set of posters for French Railways and illustrations for books . The Paris poster was the most beautiful – starting a butterfly theme for the others . The illustration above was , of course , for Don Quixote . You can just see Sancho Panza on his donkey in the bottom left hand corner . The Don is not so realistic but then he wasn’t was he ? Every part of his body is spinning – a reference to windmills ( in his head ) ? Or just his incompetence at fighting ?
I didn’t like the other room so much . Picasso was a master of line , of course , but I increasingly don’t like his subject matter – even those doves are so ubiquitous …! As to Warhol I used to like him more . This time I noticed the horrible colours on the Marylin Monroe silkscreen – why make such a beautiful woman look so awful ? Actually the garish colours and smudgy style was all over 1960s graphics so if he didn’t invent it he must still have been an early trendsetter .
I think the exhibition is on until the end of March and it is worth seeing . So is the rest of the gallery – there is a room with work by past & present students & staff at Lincoln College of Art & Design . It is now part of the University but predates it considerably . And the cafe is good !