In a recent Designer Desire post, Adelle mentioned her favourite Christmas present of the year. Today, Justin’s collection of presents are the focus. As you can see, there’s a bit of a theme. Being an Aries, a small herd of beautiful rams was a perfect gift. We thought that we’d share a few pics as we know there are lots of fellow fans of this type of vintage loveliness.
First, this fabulous 1960s tin serving tray with artwork by Rodney Peppé. These 1960s Crown Merton trays aren’t easy to come by – and the ram in particular is an elusive creature.
It’s one in a series which includes a peacock, tortoise, lion, tiger, squirrel and elephant; these are the ones that we’ve come across, anyway. Isn’t he a gorgeous fellow?!
Then there’s this rare, first edition copy of The Derby Ram by William Stobbs dating from 1975.
A magnificent, giant ram is the star of this picture book. There are charming little rhymes accompanied by glorious illustrations. We’ll have to share some more of them at a later date.
Last, but very much not least, is an original lithograph by a favourite artist of ours – Bernard Buffet.
He’s a bit more subtle that his friends above, but just as gorgeous. In fact, we have a top floor lounge-cum-bedroom where colours are deliberately kept calm and muted – dark greys, creams, wood, leather, wicker – a bit of copper here and there. This fine gentleman will fit right in!
We’ve highlighted Bernard Buffet before on our blog. We have a few of his lovely prints dotted around our house.
Buffet (1928-1999) was hugely successful and extremely prolific – producing over 8,000 paintings in his lifetime. He was described by one biographer as “The modern Mega-Artist”. As part of his exclusive contract with Galerie Drouant-David, the artist staged a major solo exhibition every year. Suffice to say, there are an awful lot of prints and lithographs on the market; check out eBay and Etsy in the first instance. If you have a spare few tens of thousands of pounds, there are also originals to be had on auction sites such as Christies.
Buffet developed Parkinson’s in later years which prevented him from working. The disease was cited as the reason he committed suicide at his home in Tourtour, Provence.
We’ve mentioned Colin Ruffell, our chosen Designer Desire artist, in the past when we acquired a couple of his original paintings a few years ago. We thought we’d share with you a few more of his artworks.
He has a few, very distinctive styles; abstract modernist, impressionist – however, it’s his naive, Cloisonnism paintings that we love the most – especially the vintage examples. Perhaps because it reminds us of the work of Bernard Buffet.
We couldn’t put it better ourselves, so we thought that we’d allow Ruffell to say a little about himself:
Colin Ruffell was born in 1939, then he was bombed, evacuated, educated, expelled, travelled, repatriated, married, bred, qualified and taught; until in 1965, aged 26, he became a full-time professional artist. Since then he is proud and happy to have survived.
This is the point at which we normally add an image of the artist or designer that we’re featuring. However, we couldn’t resist including the following short film of Ruffell’s cat, Trevor!
His vintage work comes up for auction on occasion; there’s currently a lovely example for sale on Etsy.
We tend to feature vintage and mid-century modern artists and designers in our Designer Desire series. However, the work of Sara Tyson stopped me in my tracks. Tyson is an award-winning Canadian graphic designer and illustrator with over 30 years’ experience. Her work has graced the pages of periodicals such as Harvard Business Review, National Endowment for the Humanities, Smithsonian Magazine and The Washington Post.
She says she’s inspired by early Christian and Byzantine art and I think she has a similarity in style to one of my favourite artists, Stanley Spencer – especially Shipbuilding. A selection of her work is available to purchase from the i Spot website (link below). I’d really like copies of her ’12 Days of Christmas’ series of holiday greeting cards; they’re beautiful!
Richard Koppe (1916-1973) was an American modernist artist, designer and educator. In the late 1930s, Koppe attended the New Bauhaus in Chicago where he was taught by László Moholy-Nagy. You can really see the tutor’s influence on the pupil’s style.
He produced other designs for the restaurant including 5 impressive ‘glow in the dark’ wall murals, coloured recessed back-lighting and kinetic mobiles. A range of crockery was produced for the restaurant by Shenango in 1953 using his designs. Someone on Zazzle is currently producing exact replicas of this restaurant-ware; putting it to china, melamine and textile home accessories.
Richard Koppe exhibited widely at international institutions such as the Whitney Museum of American Art, the National Academy in New York, the Art Institute of Chicago, the Carnegie Institute in Pittsburgh, the Pennsylvania Academy in Philadelphia, the Royal Academy of Art in London, the Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam and the Museum of Modern Art in New York.
He also taught for many years as Head of Visual Design and Fine Arts at the Institute of Design (ID) at the Illinois Institute of Technology (IIT) and later as Professor of Art at the University of Illinois at Chicago.
The example on offer measures 90cm x 30cm – each of the three panels is 30cm2. Upload photos to the Bags of Love from your mobile phone, computer or Facebook or Instagram accounts. You can even chose from their own image library.
I downloaded the lovely photograph above of the Ribblehead Viaduct from the internet to practice making an artwork.
It was just the right ratio for the job – 3 times wider than tall – it created a trio of perfect squares.
I tried again with a photograph of one of Justin’s favourite locations in the country – the Langdale Pikes in the Lake District.
It wasn’t the exact size to slot into three equal squares, however you can resize and crop the image until you’re happy with the composition.
You can also use three separate images – for example, a portrait of your 3 children… or your pets!
To enter, let us know in the comments what subject matter you’d chose to display on your triptych.