Friday, April 27, 2012
Delftware tile - The Grapes
One of the many new 'Delft' tiles (actually paintings on panel and not ceramic!) I have created for my Umbra Sumus (We Are But Shadows) solo show opening tonight and running for this week-end only (April 27 - 29 inclusive) in Spitalfields.
This tile represents the Grapes on Narrow-street, Limehouse (Lie-Mouse), a great old riverside pub. Dickens named the shabeen the Six Jolly Fellowship Porters in Our Mutual Friend and described it thus;
“In its whole construction it had not a straight floor and hardly a straight line, but it had outlasted and clearly would yet outlast, many a better trimmed building, many a sprucer public house. Externally, it was a narrow lop-sided wooden jumble of corpulent windows heaped one upon the other as you might heap as many toppling oranges, with a crazy wooden verandah impending over the water, but seemed to have got into the condition of a faint-hearted diver who has paused so long on the brink that he will never go in at all…”
Formerly owned and run by an ex-Bunny Girl, the pub's landlord today is none other than Gandalf the Grey, aka Sir Ian McKellan, aka Serina!