I opened the newspaper the other day to be confronted by a splendid photograph of an all-too-familiar view: a close-up, looking south, of the Martello tower at the end of the sea-wall to the south of Aldeburgh, Suffolk. The reason for the photograph was the placing on the top of its seaward wall of a life-sized human figure sculpted by – yes. you’ve guessed – Anthony Gormley; the occasion was to commemorate the Landmark Trust which owns the tower.
I have gazed for hours over the last 6 months at exactly the same view. I happened to be at the tower – the destination of one of my favourite walks – one fine day late last year when, looking up towards its east-facing wall from the Aldeburgh side, I saw the upper part of the tower’s profile blackly intersecting with the lowering sun. The effect was quickly captured photographically and then sketched, though by then the sun had shifted slightly and the visual drama lessened.
Anyway, ever since then I have been trying, and failing, to capture on paper and canvas the clarity and immediacy of that first sighting. I think I can see now how to finish the main painting – and it wont be with a human figure poised on the top of the tower’s wall as if about to dive into the sea. May be I’ll include the result in The Gallery here idc.
Incidentally, someone has already pointed out to me that I have not so far mentioned here anything about my painting or paintings; so it is perhaps timely to indicate en passant that I do paint most days. But more of that perhaps, also idc.