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Author Topic: Terence Cuneo exhibition  (Read 869 times)
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Pete Fardell
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« on: January 27, 2018, 01:36:43 PM »

Had a very pleasant hour this morning looking at the marvellous paintings in the Terence Cuneo exhibition currently at Hull University. Well worth a look if you're anywhere near. Apparently he was quite fearless when it came to getting the best viewpoint. For instance he was sitting right up in the girders to make the drawings for this painting of the Forth Rail Bridge! From a transport perspective there was rather more in the exhibition for train-heads than aviation enthusiasts, but there were a few aircraft pictures too, such as 'The Last Halifax'.
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Terence Cuneo exhibition
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« Reply #1 on: January 27, 2018, 01:46:06 PM »

I love those commercial paintings that were used for the railways and the holidays they carried people too, in the same way I love the Millington box arts of the 60's 70's KK flying scale kits, and the now sadly sanitised box arts of Airfix kits...

Thanks for posting!
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« Reply #2 on: January 27, 2018, 01:54:33 PM »

I love to see aviation and other 'transport' art .... strangely, for my interest in aircraft and painting, I have not really done any aviation art myself.
I think it's because I have a problem with painting a man-made object that has itself been painted ..... might be all those straight lines scaring me off too?!

Talking of fearless .... I have an experience from the other side!
I applied for university in the slump of the late 70s when our aviation and motor industries were in a pickle. Thinking I was doing the right thing I opted for Civil Engineering at a late date.
The very first day on the course we had a slide show for 'inspiration'!
I think it was the Humber Bridge being built at the time and they showed a photo from the top of one of the towers .... I'm not good with heights to be honest and this pretty well dulled my interest in Civil engineering from the offset!
It's all been downhill since .... but mainly on the ground!

Edit: didn't spot the typo .... it was the late 1970s



« Last Edit: January 27, 2018, 03:29:54 PM by F F modeller » Logged
Pete Fardell
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« Reply #3 on: January 27, 2018, 02:59:16 PM »

I'm not a proper artist like you Russ, but I got through O level Art alright because I realised that if you only do still life drawings of natural things, such as old tree stumps, no examiner (who only sees the resulting picture) can possibly say you've got the shape wrong! I should think planes are the hardest of all vehicles to get looking right; a deadly mixture of lines, curves and angles. Hats off to all who can capture them on paper or canvas!

If you do a google images search for Terence Cuneo you get a good flavour of the scope of his work. Of course, as with any artist I suppose, small screen images will never do justice to the real thing which is why I'm so glad we went today. We only noticed the exhibition because my son was at a totally unrelated maths workshop (also at the University library) and we had some time to kill waiting for him. Worked out perfectly!
The Hull link to Cuneo is some large impressive paintings he did of the Queen visiting in the city in the 50s, like this one of her getting into a luxury motorboat. This painting was in the exhibition too. Other non-train related pictures included this one of Winston Churchill lying in state. Apparently for this creation he was not officially commissioned, so had to join the queue of mourners to make his sketches as he waited in line. This was frowned upon so he kept getting thrown out. He simply joined the queue again until he'd got enough drawings to do the painting. Again, much more impressive in real life than shown here with the detail and scale all lost. From 1953 onwards Terence Cuneo liked to add a small mouse to his pictures, as a kind of jokey trademark. In the Halifax bomber painting it's in the grass near the front and is even wearing a mouse sized Mae West. (Spottable on the big full size picture, after some searching, but you can't see it at all on my low res pic I'm afraid.)

Agree about Airfix art, Andrew. I've got a lovely large format book of paintings by Roy Cross, who was one of their leading box art artists.
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« Reply #4 on: January 27, 2018, 08:19:57 PM »

I grew up in the Esher area of Surrey (in England) and there was a guy who used to ride a horse around town. We used to see him quite often.
It was Terence Cuneo, apparently as fond of a real horse as he was of the iron horse.
For several years the Tri-ang Hornby model railway catalogue had a Cuneo on the front cover.
Happy Days......
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« Reply #5 on: January 27, 2018, 08:25:40 PM »

Not familiar with him. Ken McD was my fave!

Dan.
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« Reply #6 on: January 28, 2018, 08:15:50 AM »

I also have the Roy Cross book (as well as a similar one on Michael Turner) I like to spend a couple of hours every now and again absorbing the atmosphere of these superb paintings. There was a Cuneo exhibition in Shaftsbury arts centre just after we moved down there, the missus just didn't understand why I didn't want to carry on with the shopping that day!!!!!
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« Reply #7 on: January 28, 2018, 09:17:55 AM »

Very envious Pete - quite a fan!  How long is the exhibition on for please as would like to try and get there.  Thanks for the post.  I think artists like him must have had many tales to tell about how they did the sketches etc. For some of those paintings of the Forth Bridge.  David Shepherd certainly did, getting close to elephants and rides in Lancaster’s etc.
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Pete Fardell
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« Reply #8 on: January 28, 2018, 10:45:39 AM »

It's on till 15th April. Here's a link:
https://culturenet.co.uk/events/painting-power-the-art-of-terence-cuneo
The two reviews are a bit harsh, as they were written by people who obviously expected to find an altogether larger exhibition. For me, coming across it unexpextedly, it was very rewarding and inspirational. It is quite small though, with (as the reviewer says) only about ten full size Cuneo paintings, but sketches, book illustrations and posters too and a real insight into his way of working. There were a couple of our excellent City of Culture volunteers on hand to answer questions and give a bit more information. And also a short Pathe newsreel item, to watch with headphones, of Cuneo at work. I've just discovered that this is on youtube as well. It's fascinating...
https://youtu.be/1EzWYA0Ha9U

(I just love that Pathe narrator's voice. If we could go about our everyday lives with that voice doing a running commentary in the background, with appropriate music, I'm sure everything would seem so much more wonderful!)
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« Reply #9 on: January 28, 2018, 02:41:50 PM »

Thank you Pete.  Well could be in with a chance as we visit Yorkshire regularly.

I think the commentator was Bob Danvers Walker who I remember vividly form the war years and mon when I went to the cinema regularly.  You are also right about the influence of his voice too.  All the things portrayed on these news reels were treated encorouragingly when it came to things we had produced.  I remember for example the Canberra first being rolled out and as it was flying around it was hailed as another great achievement by Britain who showed the world how to do it all (even though subsequently it was revealed the Canberra had a few issues).  Today of course all we get is the usual script about it being over budget and out of date etc.  But then you see I suppose having come through a war we had pride in ourselves and a positive outlook generally.  I think actually a Bob Danvers Walker did his commentaries for some 30 years or so.  He always was suited and booted even though he was not always seen.
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