Another Sketchbook Project page.
In this poem, by Fleur Adcock, she says: "...I decided to write about something that I had often felt about art galleries, that when you come out, your vision is different, you see things differently than when you went in."
Leaving the Tate
Coming out with your clutch of postcards
in a Tate Gallery bag and another clutch
of images packed into your head you pause
on the steps to look across the river
and there's a new one: light bright buildings,
a streak of brown water, and such a sky
you wonder who painted it--Constable? No:
too brilliant. Crome? No: Too ecstatic--
a madly pure Pre-Raphaelite sky,
perhaps, sheer blue apart from the white plumes
rushing up to it (today, that is,
April. Another day would be different
but it wouldn't matter. All skies work.)
Cut to the lower right for a detail:
seagulls pecking on mud, below
two office blocks and a Georgian terrace.
Now swing to the left, and take in plane trees
bobbled with seeds, and that brick building,
and a red bus...Cut it off just there,
by the lamp post. Leave the scaffolding in.
That's your next one. Curious how
these outdoor pictures didn't exist
before you'd looked at the indoor pictures,
the ones on the walls. But here they are now,
marching out of their panorama
and queuing up for the viewfinder
your eye's become. You can isolate them
by holding your optic muscles still.
You can zoom in on figure studies
(that boy with the rucksack,) or still lives,
abstracts, townscapes. No one made them.
The light painted them. You're in charge
of the hanging committee. Put what space
you like around the ones you fix on,
and gloat. Art multiplies itself.
Art's whatever you choose to frame.
1 week ago