Edward Burra (1905-1976) is one of the most intriguing and enigmatic artists of the 20th century. A Rye View brings together a group of his watercolours depicting Hastings and Rye.
Highlights of the exhibition are The Harbour, Hastings (1947) which depicts Hastings’ lively beach-launched fishing fleet, the same beach and the same fleet that the Jerwood Gallery sits next to today, and the vibrant, large-scale Hastings Pub (1971).
Burra suffered life-long health problems and had chronic arthritis from a young age. This debilitating condition meant that he had to work in watercolour rather than oil paints, because he found the oils too heavy for his arthritic hands. A rare 1930s portrait of Burra by fellow Jerwood Collection artist and Hastings resident John Banting has been generously loaned by the National Portrait Gallery.
This two-room exhibition forms part of a series called ‘In Focus’ where a work of art in the Jerwood Collection is taken as the starting point for a show. Burra’s The Churchyard, Rye, has been in the Jerwood Collection since 2010
The exhibition runs until 7 June.
Edward Burra, The Harbour, Hastings, 1947 © © The estate of Edward Burra, courtesy Lefevre Fine Art, London Pallant House Gallery, Chichester on loan from a Private Collection 2004.
Lara Wardle, Curator, Jerwood Collection © Photo: Justin Lycett