Newsletter to Members for 2012
We have an exciting programme of lectures and visits for 2012-13 which I will outline below. First however I wish to thank all the committee who have worked extremely hard to present the programme of lectures and to conduct the study days and visits over the last year so successfully. We have also made charitable contributions through Young Arts. Full details of the donations we have made are on the website and there is only space here for brief details of what Pepeta Dutton has organised. We gave £500 to St Helena Hospice for art materials for art therapy for bereaved children which was most gratefully received.
We also supported the Big Draw at Colchester Castle, sponsoring one day of an animation workshop and funding ten children from Cherry Tree Primary School to attend. We helped that school last year with a music workshop organised through Roman River Festival. We hope to continue to support both the St Helena Hospice and Cherry Tree again.
Our Lecture Programme 2012-13 is wide-ranging and promises to be most interesting, taking us from Ancient Egyptian Tomb Scenes (Lucia Gahlin) through David Hockney’s illustration of fashion in the 1960’s (Mary Alexander) to the twenty-first century and the buildings for the 2012 London Olympics (Anthea Streeter).
We will explore the 18th century art scene by examining the portraits of some of the most notorious mistresses and courtesans of the period (Linda Smith). By way of contrast, the portrayal of family life during the same period will be the subject of another lecture (Catherine Parry-Wingfield). This lecture is linked with an exhibition organised by the Tate Gallery (in Norwich until January 2012). We will also learn more about extraordinarily elegant and eccentric houses such as Strawberry Hill (Philippa Barton) which we will visit in the spring. Moving on to the Pre-Raphaelites (Valerie Woodgate) we will enjoy the wonderful array of intense colours of their work, and admire Paul Nash’s charming wood engravings and botanical illustrations (David Boyd Haycock) . On the theme of plants and gardens we will look at 17th century gardens and the beauty of their formality (James Bolton). Our Christmas lecture (Hilary Guise) will focus on the Ox and the Ass at the cribside.
The Study Days in January 2012 will be given by Eveline Eaton on the Art and Architecture of Berlin. For January 2013 we are moving further east and discovering the Magic of the Silk Routes, both land and sea, with Anne Haworth.
Before highlighting the Visits treats in store for 2012, I must mention the outstanding visit to Dorset in May this year, where we were privileged to visit some houses rarely open to the public as well as better known masterpieces. It was thoroughly enjoyed. I know the Visits organisers are very grateful for all the enthusiasm and support they receive from happy travellers. The recent autumn visit to Apsley House and Wellington Arch was fascinating and much enjoyed with views from the top giving an unusual perspective on Hyde Park Corner. This year the centrepiece of the Visits programme is a full 4-day visit to Holland taking in Amsterdam, Leiden, The Hague and Het Loo We shall leave late evening of 2nd September via overnight ferry from Harwich, returning in the early morning of 7th September. Booking will open in January. Closer to home we have introduced a two-day trip with a night away: Blenheim and Bletchley Park on 22nd and 23rd April. For May and June we have day visits: the first to Southill Park, owned by the Whitbread family, with a wealth of furniture and paintings, together with a fine garden, and to Wrest Park where English Heritage have recently restored the house and extensive gardens prior to its opening earlier this year. Hopefully the weather will be good on 21st May. The second will be to Strawberry Hill and Chiswick House and Gardens on 18th June. These visits are bookended by the visit to the Leonardo exhibition at the National Gallery on 25th January (waiting list only at time of writing) and by a visit to the City in November to see Goldsmiths Hall and St Paul’s Cathedral.
Church Recording Having finished Fingringhoe the team decided to have a break. Some members of ColchesterDFAS are helping NEEDFAS with Langham church and would be delighted to know of anyone who would like to join them. To find out more please contact Graham Pullen (membership secretary).
The Essex Area for NADFAS to which we are affiliated, would like to have direct email contact with our members. We have been asked to say that if you would like to receive information direct from Essex Area you should email them at email@example.com and ask to join their emailing list. ColchesterDFAS has declined to pass email addresses to Essex Area for data protection reasons. If you do choose this option please would you copy your email to us at firstname.lastname@example.org so we can see how many of our members opt for direct access to Essex Area.
This year, with the Renewal Form, you will find a Donor Gift Aid declaration form. You are invited to complete it if you wish to enable NADFAS to claim Gift Aid on the affiliation fee which ColchesterDFAS collects as part of your annual subscription and passes on as agent to NADFAS. In recognition of the extra work for societies in administering the Gift Aid scheme, NADFAS will pay an administration fee of £1 to ColchesterDFAS in respect of each gift-aided donation (affiliation fee) it receives from our members.
We are asking joint members each to complete their own Donor form, if eligible, for the amount of the affiliation fee for 2012, ie £11.40 each. (NADFAS was able to claim £2.79 on each gift-aided affiliation fee of £11.15 in 2011). When renewing your joint membership please complete the form and send ColchesterDFAS one cheque for your subscription as usual. It is entirely a matter for each member to decide whether they are eligible (ie being a UK tax payer) or wish to complete the Gift Aid form.
As you can see we have been busy. We decided we needed more hands on deck and accordingly we have, during the year, co-opted three people on to the committee: John Ashton, Celia Crookenden and Carol Pearson. They are now being proposed for election as members of the committee.
Finally, on behalf of the committee, may I thank you all as members for your continuing support for ColchesterDFAS by coming to lectures, study days and visits. Your enthusiasm and the positive feedback we receive are greatly appreciated by all the Committee. I have very much enjoyed my first months as Chairman, made easier by a seamless and helpful handover from my predecessor, and I hope that you will enjoy next year’s programme as much as the Committee anticipate.
With all best wishes for a happy 2012, Alicia Herbert, Chairman
For previous Newsletters and bulletins you can look here.
Art therapy for St Helena Hospice Children
We are pleased to report that St Helena Hospice was recently presented with a cheque for £500 from the members of the Colchester Decorative and Fine Arts Society, to help towards purchasing essential art materials for bereaved children. We decided to contribute some of our annual charitable funds this year to the Hospice, to help towards supplying paint, paper and clay for use as art therapy for patients’ children.
Using art therapy within St Helena Hospice has become an integral tool in helping children pre and post-bereavement, usually with the death of one of their parents. This type of therapy has proved to be very successful in opening up very sensitive communication for children, facing what is probably one of the most traumatic times in their lives. It works to allow the child to express very difficult feelings and help them to move on in life, with some strategies to deal with the on-going grief.
Art therapy within the Hospice is either done on an individual basis by trained art therapists, or through the STARS programme. The programme, which is held by the Hospice at least once a year, invites surviving parents and their children, aged from 5 to 25 years old, to attend a week long programme, and help work through their grief together as a family.
Pepeta Dutton presented the cheque on behalf of ColchesterDFAS. She told the Hospice that we wanted to be able to help support bereaved children through a difficult time, and hopefully enable them to appreciate art through this type of therapy.
Rosy Stamp, the Hospice Director, said “This is a wonderful contribution to our art therapy work with children and
will make a real difference to the materials that we can buy for the Hospice this year. The art therapy work is so
important in helping children overcome the death of a parent, and we would like to say a big thank you to all members of
the Colchester Decorative and Fine Arts Society for their thoughtful gift”.
For more information on the work of the Hospice and the STARS programme, please go to www.sthelenahospice.org.uk
Supporting the Arts
Front Cover of William Ratcliffe - Paintings, prints and drawings by Rosamond Allwood. (The Old Flour Mill, Ickleford c 1915) Copyright:the Artist's estate. Published by North Hertfordshire District Council, 2011.
Colchester DFAS has this year helped the Victor Batte-Lay Trust by researching and writing an entry in the Trust’s online collection catalogue for its painting by William Ratcliffe of Hampstead High Street. Ratcliffe (1870-1955)was a member of the Camden Town Group. The entry with an image of the painting can be found by visiting the Collection and clicking on the right hand picture; then choose from the index.
In the course of the research we received helpful advice from Rosamond Allwood, curator of the large collection of William Ratcliffe’s paintings held at Letchworth Museum and Art Gallery. At that time Rosamond was preparing a new and more comprehensive book about Ratcliffe’s life and work. Colchester DFAS and the Victor Batte-Lay Trust (with others) responded to a request for support towards the cost of its publication.
This support has enabled completion and publication of the book, in which our contribution is acknowledged. The Society’s copy will be on display at the autumn meetings.
If you would like to purchase a copy it costs £12.50 including packing and postage. Cheques should be made payable to ‘North Hertfordshire District Council’, and sent to Letchworth Museum, Broadway, Letchworth Garden City, SG6 3PF.Payment may also be made by credit card over the telephone: 01462-685647.