Work of Alfred Janes is celebrated in a centenary exhibition
Friday 11 March 2011
Visitors to our house fall into two categories: the ones who notice the paintings and the ones who don't. The bold and colourful works, made in many different styles and materials over the 20th century, cover the walls. How could anyone not notice them?
My paintings are one of the blessings of being the child of an artist. My late father was Alfred Janes, born in Swansea in 1911, whose work is being celebrated in a centenary exhibition. Described by the leading 20th-century art historian Mel Gooding as "one of the most original and inventive artists of his generation", he is best known for his early still lifes and portraits, most notably of his friend the poet Dylan Thomas.
Apart from the paintings, there are memories of my childhood on the Gower Peninsula. The smell of linseed oil takes me right back to the barn of our rambling house, which was my father's studio. By then his painting was abstract and the linseed was an ingredient in the paint he mixed himself. Later, he incorporated sand into the pictures, which I would help him collect from the beach.
But anyone who tries to make a living out of the arts faces setbacks and insecurity. My brother recalls driving my father to the private view of a one-man show in Wales. "It's a beautiful sunny day," Dad said. "No one will come. They'll all be on the beach." His anxiety was totally misplaced.
'Alfred Janes: Centenary Exhibition', Kooywood Gallery, Cardiff, 18 March to 15 April (www.kooywoodgallery.com)
Grace Dent on TV The Secret Life of the Pub is sexist, ageist and a breath of fresh air
Art Megumi Igarashi criticises Japan's 'backwards' attitude to women's sexual expression
Ray Davies' Sunny Afternoon scoops the most awardsTheatre
Grace DentChannel 4 show proves there's no app for happiness
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Alan Rickman admits editing 'terrible' script with friends in Pizza Hut behind backs of writers on Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves
- 2 Rarest Beanie Baby of them all could be sold for £62,500 on eBay
- 3 Professional big game hunter Ian Gibson crushed to death by elephant during hunt
- 4 Farmer told to tear down mock-Tudor castle after hiding construction behind hay bales
- 5 Rebecca Francis accuses Ricky Gervais of using 'influence' to target female hunters after receiving barrage of death threats
Better Call Saul creator Peter Gould on the creative concerns of a prequel, season 2 and the mind-numbing realities of the small courts
Game of Thrones season 5: Emilia Clarke praises characters who 'accept their femininity'
Britain's Got Talent 2015: RSPCA investigating Marc Metral's miming dog after cruelty complaints
Fifty Shades of Grey movie shows first sex scene 'after 40 minutes'
Glastonbury 2015 tickets: How to make sure you’re successful in Sunday's re-sale
If I’m being racially abused I don’t need a stranger with a saviour complex to rescue me
The only black face in the Ukip manifesto is on the page about overseas aid
Ukip is the only main political party to not address LGBT rights in its manifesto
Food banks: One million Britons will soon be using them, according to Trussell Trust
Religion isn't growing, it is becoming vigorous in its demise, says philosopher AC Grayling
BBC election debate: The one photo that summed up the whole 90-minute leaders debate