BBC Your Paintings Project & my mother’s work

‘Your Paintings is a website which aims to show the entire UK national collection of oil paintings, the stories behind the paintings, and where to see them for real. It is made up of paintings from thousands of museums and other public institutions around the country.’ (Source- Your Paintings website)

Pennine Road (1993) Vera Lowe (Private collection)

‘Your Paintings’ is a partnership project between the Public Catalogue Foundation & the BBC. The aim is to catalogue all the oil paintings that are held in the public collections around the UK & make all 200,000 available to be viewed online. Although it isn’t just oil paintings that are being included, works in tempera, acrylic & mixed media that includes oil or acrylic paint will also be added. 

Tempera is one of the earliest types of paint  (made by blending egg & pigment), so this means that  some of the oldest paintings in the collection will be included. By contrast, acrylic first became available in the 1950s & so many of the works are comparatively recent.

In the early 1960s my mother, Vera Lowe, began to use the new acrylic paint ‘Cryla’, fell in love with its immediacy & continued to use it for the rest of her life. The paint was sympathetic to the northern landscapes she loved to paint.

 My sister & I have often talked about making a website & cataloguing her work, but it seems the BBC have beaten us to it! So far, three works have been included, but she also has work in the Manchester City Art Gallery, which has not yet been added.

Here is a link to view my mother’s art on ‘Your Paintings’* : Vera Lowe

Whilst researching this post I found a lovely description of Vera by Sheila Gerrard

‘Vera was a vibrant woman, passionate about painting…….her paintings were strong like her character.’

And also this account of a demonstration my mother had given:

‘She said, addressing the ladies in particular, “leave the fluff under the bed, it will only come back again, paint instead”
Not only did my mother influence my art, but also my attitude to housework!

If you enjoyed this, here are some other posts you might like:
Pomegranates – an Inktense demonstration [Video]

Sunset over the Severn – watercolour

Guest Blogging – Derwent Inktense and Watercolour Demo [VIDEO]

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*Since writing this article the BBC Your Paintings website has been superseded by Art UK and the link has been updated.  

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2 thoughts on “BBC Your Paintings Project & my mother’s work

  1. cococita

    I am so impressed! Thank you for sharing dear Erica! Your family is really talented! One day, I'd love to visit Manchester and I'll put this Gallery on my list as I like these paintings, because I love your country and have something with houses and nature that I can't explain …Hihi, the sentence "leave the fluff …" makes me think of myself. One has to set priorities and art always comes first :)I like the initiative by the BBC and this foundation: it's so important to preserve our artistic heritage …


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