Wokingham Today

Celebratin­g the Six Nations… England

- By Jeremy Edwards, AntiqArt

THE painting this week has nothing to do with rugby whatsoever, but as the IRB Six

Nations Tournament is upon us and I absolutely love rugby, I thought over the weeks of the Six Nations I would celebrate the art of each of the countries involved.

I continue and finish the series this week with England.

This is a beautifull­y detailed watercolou­r painting of Stover Lake near Teignmouth in Devon by renowned watercolou­rist Mark Gibbons.

The painting, entitled Evening, Stover Lake, was painted in 1996 and is a delightful­ly subtle watercolou­r with muted hues giving the feeling of calmness and peace.

It definitely evokes the feeling of the whole lake settling down for the night. Birds are flying around a calm sky, with hills stretching away in the background, as if searching for a suitable roosting site for the night. Others have settled on the lake surface readying themselves for their evening slumbers.

A solitary wooded island is almost hazy in the evening light. Stover Lake is part of The Stover Country Park which is a nature reserve owned by Devon


Mark Gibbons was born in Lyme Regis, Dorset in 1949, his father was in the RAF and when Mark was five his father was posted to Penang, Malaysia.

He loved the sheer variety of special things to be seen in Penang such as monkeys running around in their back garden and the jungle behind their bungalow, sugar cane growing everywhere, the rambutans (a type of tropical fruit), etc.

It is no surprise then that as an adult Mark had a desire to travel and following graduating from

Hull University he went on his travels. He also taught himself to paint using the likes of Turner and Sargent as his main inspiratio­ns. He detailed everything that worked and aborted anything that didn’t. His travels started in Australia with the notion of “painting his way around the world”.

That may not have been as easy as it sounded he visited many countries and experience­d a whole lot more than most.

When eventually coming back to the UK he initially settled in South Devon, becoming a full-time artist, spending time painting al fresco, camping out in his old fishing tent while capturing the natural beauty of his surroundin­gs.

In 2003, he and his wife bought a small holding in North Cornwall, being close enough to The Dartmoor National Park and the rugged Cornish coast to be able to paint them both regularly.

This is a simply lovely painting and it has a very low-price tag, for a work by this artist of only £250.

This great original painting, along with many others, is available to view and purchase at AntiqArt, the “preloved art” gallery at Holme Grange Craft Village or online at www. antiqart.co.uk.

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