Sunday, 18 November 2012

Photos of inside the new Updown gallery in Ramsgate and a Sunday ramble

All pictures copyright and produced with permission of the gallery, their website is

I really recommend visiting this exhibition of Sir Peter Blake’s prints, if you don’t think he is an artist you are familiar with he designed the Sgt Pepper album cover, so you probably are.

First an apology for the photos, I had to fit the whole thing, buying lunch, eating it, walking from my bookshop to the gallery and taking the photos into my lunchtime yesterday.

So the pictures (click obsessively on them to expand them) below are just snaps using the camera in my mobile phone, I promise to return with a proper camera and attempt to do the subject justice.  

Now for the ramble, I guess this gallery is the first substantial and London related spinoff from having The Turner Contemporary in Thanet, to arrive in Ramsgate, my guess is there will be much more.

Even with the recession the penny is dropping that the train journey from London to Ramsgate is faster now than the one to Whitstable. Thanet has the best climate in the UK and Ramsgate, more listed buildings than most places, low property prices and so on.   

Business wise I am feeling the effect in my bookshop, so this is all positive.

Some of the artworks in the photos are not by Peter Blake, some of the clues are here

I have been complaining about the closure of non food shops everywhere recently, the key to this is that with most browsable shops the internet is taking over, art I don’t think can really work in this way, the internet tries but fails to nail it.

Staying with the ramble and the art theme last Friday evening I was sketching over a drink in the Belgian Café.
Drawing and painting in semidarkness isn’t an exact science, but I did promise the musicians I was talking to that I would put the sketch online, here it is.
Exposed to the light of day, it started as A5 size so expanding it reveals all faults.  I will ramble on 


  1. Thanks for posting what looks a must-see exhibition. Can you tell me the price of admission and whether it's reasonably easy to park in that area?

    1. Entrance is free, there is usually ample street parking in this part of Ramsgate, which is free.

      The great wall of Ramsgate, the gallery in York Street and there is usually some sort of art exhibition in The Belgian Café, all worth a look.

      If you are doing The Turner Contemporary in Margate by car parking on the old Dreamland site is about £2.50 for all day, there are several other art exhibitions usually on in Margate a gallery in the old town with a large basement also worth a look.

      Best to make sure you don’t do it on one of the weeks when the Turner Contemporary is having an exhibition changeover, lots of negative tripadvisor comments and so on from people who have made this mistake.

    2. I'm most grateful. Turner Contemporary doesn't appeal, but I shall try to take in the Ramsgate attractions you mention.

  2. Oh, nothing worse than a pebble dashed Victorian house.

    1. Dear oh dear 12.12 I do hope I am not going to have to resort to a diagram here, it’s the other side of the wall you are supposed to look at.

  3. Just to say I like the spontenaity of the Belgian Cafe watercolour, sometimes its best to work fast. Will definitely take in the new gallery and look forward to seeing the Peter Blakes. Cant wait to see the Howard Hodgkins_what a feast of glorious colour. To me the Howard Hodgkin is the star of the Katz exhibition, exhibiting all the painterly quality you would expect. Long live an Art revival in Ramsgate!

    1. Thanks, pencil, watercolour and hardly any light and you never know what you did, what the medium did, worth a hundred painted from photos to me.

      With the Katz exhibition it was his beach ones that did it for me, which I didn’t expect, he managed to nail some looks.

  4. Went to this yesterday and thoroughly enjoyed it. A rare opportunity to see late work of one of the great British Contemporary artists.
    I shall be going back for a second or third look.

  5. Love the Updown Gallery and the great works and interest it brings to Ramsgate.....Well done them. So looking forward to seeing H Hodgkins and some local artisits......

  6. Love the Updown Gallery and the great works and interest it brings to Ramsgate.....Well done them. So looking forward to seeing H Hodgkins and some local artisits......


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