Cornwall LivingIssue #126

An exhibition of celebration

Introducing two blockbuster exhibitions at the Jackson Foundation Gallery, St Just.

The name Kurt Jackson is synonymous with large-scale, ambitious, visceral plein-air paintings that capture the raw power and natural beauty of the landscape laid before his canvas. In his newest collection, leading British contemporary artist Kurt Jackson revisits the Helford River, its creeks and tributaries to reveal stunning beauty and incredible biodiversity. Along the way, Jackson explores the wildlife and the communities that live in and on this unique watercourse.

For Helford River, Jackson turns his eye to that stretch of water running west to east, entering the sea into Falmouth Bay. The Helford’s shoreline is vast, taking in a wide range of habitats; its exposed rocky estuary stands in stark contrast to the sheltered muddy creeks found further inland. This flooded river valley is fed by seven streams including Frenchman’s Creek, immortalised by Daphne DuMaurier’s enduringly popular novel of the same name. A dedicated environmentalist, Kurt Jackson is drawn to the Helford not just for its stunning vistas and romantic associations, but equally for its significance as an area rich in biodiversity and importance to conservation and wildlife. In what is sure to be another blockbuster, this exhibition draws together Jackson’s paintings, sculptures, etchings and ceramics to celebrate a truly unique part of Cornwall.

Photographer Ander Gunn has spent a lifetime turning his lens to the world. From a photo of a working-class Londoner framed in the doorway of a red-brick clad public convenience, to intimate portraits of the brightest lights of the St Ives School, this exhibition of photographic images reflects his output over the last 70 years to offer a sample of both rural and urban subject matter. “Watching my father at work felt like being with a magician conjuring up images that floated into life,” explains his daughter, Charlotte Gunn. “Time always seemed to melt away. It was a very magical experience. To wash his photographs Ander had to use the bath. Large prints of people, landscapes and seascapes floating as we cleaned our teeth. I’d often see people that I recognised locally – Roger Hilton, Patrick Heron, a tin miner, a farmer with his cattle. Other familiar faces included writers and artists such as Tom Stoppard, Barbara Hepworth, Jean Rhys, Karl Weshke, Brenda Wooton and my uncle Thom, Ander’s brother.” 

Kurt Jackson: Helford River & Ander Gunn: Seven Decades will be exhibited at the multi-award-winning Jackson Foundation gallery in St Just, West Cornwall until February 2023.


Facebook:  jacksonfoundation

Instagram:  jacksonfgallery