Recently, I had the privilege of teaching a group of armed forces veterans. This was held for beneficiaries of the Bridge for Heroes Charity. The Art Course was aimed at helping each person to find confidence through art. The course culminated in an Exhibition. Each member of the course had space to show their paintings and drawings. I hope each was encouraged by what they had achieved. I know that some have continued to paint and draw and learn more. Each has found interest in subjects as varied as landscape and ship camouflage [dazzle]. Visitors to the Exhibition were very complimentary and, I heard that, one asked to buy a picture.
The work was, mostly, pictures: pencil, pastel, charcoal, collage, water colour and acrylics. There were portraits, war scenes, landscapes and abstracts.
I wonder what Mussorgsky would have made of it all? His walk through would not have provided “The Bogatyr Gates” but there was a scene showing a First World War Memorial. There was no “Catacombs” but there was a painting of war tombs. There was no “Ballet Scenery” but there was the dance of jet planes in a night sky. There was no “Tuileries Garden” but there was a Winter Garden scene.
It has left me thinking about the way music and pictorial art can combine and what melody each of the Art Group might have chosen for their Exhibition. And what music accompanies the picture I have painted on the canvas of my life?
Mussorsgky painted by Ilya Repin