Archive for the ‘gardens’ Category

chris.baker.london@gmail.com

To Charleston, the home of the Bloomsbury set and Farley Farm, the home of the Surrealists in England, and all in one day. And what a glorious summer day. Vanessa Bell and Duncan Grant were the main inhabitants but the house has a fascinating history and is full of circles, squares and triangles. Roland Penrose and Lee miller lived at Farley Farm and the house was a meeting place for leading modern artists of the time including Picasso – more shapes to see and a sculpture garden. (Oh – and there are great places to have a pub lunch nearby.)

CharlestonNow to get ready for tomorrow’s Fair in the Square in Highgate…

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contact: chris.baker.london@gmail.com

The satnav was switched on and the trip to Wrest Park began. So to all the back roads in Bedfordshire. It was a real mystery tour going to somewhere ‘new’. To one of Britain’s finest ‘secret gardens’ – all 90 acres of it. A fabulous place to inspire with its magnificent house with conservatory, formal and wooded gardens, a central walk along a gravel path surrounded by statues, giving the long view of the pavilion across the lake.

Wrest-pavillion

Wrest-Conservatory

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chris.baker.london@gmail.com

…..now there’s a chance to paint outside – or at least in a greenhouse.  Latest inspirations came from several sources: Darwin’s House in Downe, Kent, Myddleton House in Enfield, and the Heath is looking great, too.

Darwin's Greenhouse

Darwin's Pots

Myddleton-Greenhouse

Heath-towards-Kenwood

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e-mail: chris.baker.london@gmail.com

Arlington Square is a community open garden in a quiet conservation area of Islington, N1. It is surrounded by Victoria terraces and is very close to the Regent’s Canal which runs through this part of central London. The garden was originally an unkempt open space used during WW2 for trench shelters and barrage balloon moorings. The council laid it out in the 50s and planted (now mature) trees – including olives, palms , shrubs, lawns and flower beds.  Recently an active residents association has begun to hold regular gardening sessions and host some lively events, such as the summer fete that was held on the 7th September.  Events on the day included a tombola, book and other stalls, and a painting competition. I was delighted to be given a prize for my painting – a very welcome token for CASS Art! There are plans to put the images in a calendar and the painting can be seen at a local pub, the Hanbury Arms till the end of this month.

Arlington Square

Arlington Square

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e-mail: chris.baker.london@gmail.com

…and my nineteenth post. Guests at the Highgate golf course this week, pity it was the only day so far when it rained. But the rain didn’t spoil the view, and there was extra media available. Actually it was an advantage in some ways since all I had with me were watercolour pencils for sketching and I could add rainwater to fix the lines. Here’s the finished painting….

Golf-club

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contact e-mail: chris.baker.london@gmail.com

The pond at Kenwood looks wonderful from the house, but close up the little bridge is a charming feature. The water lilies are flowering and the meadow beside it includes striking foxgloves. There’s something magical about it at this time of year.

Kenwood-pond-bridge

contact e-mail: chris.baker.london@gmail.com

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contact e-mail: chris.baker.london@gmail.com

Before the concerts change the serenity, pond side at  Kenwood House offers a tranquil spot and a great place to sketch. Some in the group stayed near the House – which is still shrouded in mystery while major renovation work takes place. Others of us wandered into the surrounding grounds. It’s very familiar territory but there’s so much to see and it always seems fresh:

Kenwood-pondside

contact e-mail: chris.baker.london@gmail.com

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