Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Todays been very tiring but definitely satisfying to have got a lot done. Other than being mucked around by coaches and doctors it's all been pretty good.

I wanted to go to London one last time before heading off, so that I could see my uncle, aunt and cousins and to go and see some galleries. I went up on the coach with my mum and headed to the National Portrait Gallery to meet my mother's friend from school, Anne. On the way we passed the new sculpture in Trafalgar square which, though we didn't get that close, is pretty startling from a distance.

We headed to see the self-portrait exhibition which has almost 600 years of self-portraits from around 60 artists. These range from Van-Eyck through Rembrandt upto Hopper and BaconThere are a few excellent pieces but it's not nearly as startling as the BP Portrait exhibition last month in which there were a few really spectacular paintings. I was quite taken with Marlene Dumas who I had never seen before. Again, this isn't the one from the exhibition but is in a similar style.
After lunch (which is getting easier every day) at the NPG, we headed to Somerset House where there was a great exhibition of Andre Derain's (a fauvist) London paintings. Only a few of these but they were an interesting bunch. Unfortunately I only had a few minutes but had a look around and found some superb sculptures of Rodin, Degas and Renoir a really interesting Barbara Hepworth (not the one shown here but a similar idea, I'll change it if I find the right one) and some Kandinskys that I'd never seen.

After all this I met up with my uncle, aunt and two cousins and their grandparents and went for a nice meal and chat before heading to Covent Garden (via a shop where my uncle bought me some hyperdermic needles in case I end up in a backwater in China and need a jab!).
Anyway, great to see them all and am hoping to see at least Phill out in China and if possible Carol and the girls.

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