Monday, 5 March 2012


                                    Peter Frankl, Hong Kong 1978, by Diane Gorvin


“It was over thirty years ago, I was at art college and we were given a project to design a relief sculpture for a bank and I thought I’d  base it on the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra as I’d get lots of drawing practice and I could make something interesting based on them.  I was attending many of their rehearsals and sometimes they’d have a concert pianist there. The soloists were always the most interesting and exciting people to draw and inevitably I ended up drawing a few pianists during these rehearsals.  When someone is a soloist they have such a passion for the music that they move in an intense and interesting way, it’s very hard to capture.  I like the challenge of it.  Drawing a pianist is very difficult.  The piano is such a complex, architectural form that it’s very difficult to draw so if I knew I was going to be around a lot, then I could invest a lot of time in drawing the actual instrument.  I went on tour with the orchestra to Hong Kong and Peter Frankl was in that series of concerts and I was with them for the whole three weeks.  I think that my Peter Frankl work was the best of series of drawings that I did for this project because I had time to invest in drawing the piano and then I could set him against the piano, and try to capture his stance and movement.  It’s such a big instrument that it makes drawing it very difficult, so if I was only going to be there for an hour or so, I would concentrate on the artist and put just a few lines in for the keyboard because it’s fascinating to see just how much people move when they play the piano.  When I was drawing the orchestra I didn’t talk to the soloists, I was young and lucky to be given the chance to draw - they were famous and there to rehearse their music.  I was given a lot of freedom to sit where I liked. I was drawing Peter in the concert hall, I was sitting in the front row, it was during a rehearsal.  This work was sold to a collector in Canada in an auction to raise money for Motor Neuron Disease, my friend Amy Doolittle who was a flautist and musician, was dying and her family and friends had an auction to help her.  Peter Frankl was great, he signed the work that I sent him before it was auctioned, and he posted it on to Canada, he e-mailed kind words that I  also forwarded to Amy - it meant a lot to her that so many cared, and helped.” (Diane Gorvin)  Phil Bews and Diane Gorvin are a partnership that makes sculpture for the public realm, collaborating on a wide range of public art projects, internationally and throughout the UK. Experienced in liaising with architects, landscape architects, structural engineers and fabricators, they have designed, made and installed over a hundred site specific, sculptural works in a wide variety of environments in both urban and rural contexts, many were commissioned from 'percent for art' policies.                          

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