Study for Keith by Ronnie WoodAn exhibition of originals and prints by Ronnie Wood

The Liverpool Academy of Arts, 32 Seel St, Liverpool L1 4BE
19th-29th August 2008, 11am-5pm

Invitation courtesy of Jonathon Poole

Reviewed by Amanda DeAngeles

After walking through a circus carnival in the foyer that is the Come Together exhibition of Beatle Art, walk through double-doors to approximately seventy-five images (framed and unframed) which charter the life of a man known predominantly for his guitar twanging for a band you may have heard of: The Rolling Stones. I gather we're on the same page now…

Two paces in, and background music a thoughtful aside, check about this vast series of works consisting mostly of portraiture. Famous musicians; Ronnie Wood's musical family, flashing sketchy colours in mixed-media, depict movement, character and mood. The artist searches soundly around subjects: some of whom he knew well, some perhaps acquaintances and others maybe influences in his most extraordinary life.

As well as transitions in style, media and form, Wood the artist, as a silent observer lonely in a crowd, looks deep into eyes and interprets souls onto paper or canvas. Ask about technical proficiency and I'd answer Ronnie is a natural artist. This is a captivating series, which mostly conveys a journal of musical history.

To think that the hands of one of the world's most famous living guitarists are capable of this when he lays down the noise-box with strings attached, is amazing. Amid excitement at the preview, I felt a deep sadness. It's a shame his artistic and musical talents never saved him from years of drug and alcohol abuse. Hope you feel better soon, Ronnie.

I could reel off the names of all the faces displayed on the wall but there are too many. Oh, all right - aside from other band members (The Rolling Stones and The Faces featured) you will find a study of Elvis, another study of Grace Jones, a brass section of jazz players, several wild animals, Genghis Khan on horseback, and a beautiful picture of Marvin Gaye in the rain. You must go to the exhibition to see the rest for yourself. (Opening hours and location noted above).

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Comment left by Sydney F Smith on 26th August, 2008 at 16:41
So,Amanda DeAngelis has the impudence to insinuate that the great Come Together Beatles exhibition is a "circus".Of course,only a clown could make such a crass and offensive observation.The Come Together exhibition has some exceptionally talented artists and is enjoyed by many art lovers who appreciate the wonderfully varied works on display. Ronnie Wood's exhibition is good.But arguably,it is not quite as good as Amanda depicts.For instance;the Elvis study could be much better painted,perhaps by a Come Together artist!And the tiger painting needs the skill of a professional animal artist. The messag here is to juggle both exhibitions fairly,and stop clowning about!

Comment left by m on 27th August, 2008 at 17:24
great!! Liverpool art mocked and dismissed on a site that states it promotes grassroots art and culture ??????

Comment left by C on 8th September, 2008 at 15:03
Art that promotes a multi-million industry ie. the Beatles, no matter whether it is produced by Liverpool artists, is not what you could call grassroots art and culture!!

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