EXHIBITION PRODUCTION ARCHIVE - Presences of Nature: Words and Images of the Lake District
[4 ALS] A collection of letters by William Scammell, two on University of Newcastle headed notepaper. In his letters Scammell discusses the commission and his proposed submissions, including "The Screes" and "Monday,Monday". He also includes a biographical note and details of his published books.
[3 TLS] Three letters by the conceptual artist John Hilliard, discussing the commission and his reticence in being considered a 'Lakeland' artist. He proposes two submissions, 'Frozen' and 'Double Description-Coniston Water' and gives detailed framing instructions, hand-drawn in pen.
[6 ALS; 1 handwritten biography; 1 lithographic Christmas card] A collection of letters and a signed coloured etching of a Lake District landscape by the printmaker Donald Wilkinson, made in connection with the exhibition in the Lake District in 1982. In his letters, Wilkinson discusses the commission and encloses the Christmas card as an example of his recent work.
John A Davies:
[5 ALS; 1 pencil sketch; 1 handwritten biography] A collection of letters by the photographer John A Davies. Davies expresses his interest in the commission "I think the show would prove very stimulating and I would be most interested to see how other contemporary artists see the Cumbrian landscape." He lists the 12 photographs to be exhibited along with an A5 page of annotated pencil sketches of each, and discusses their reproduction for the exhibition catalogue.
[6 ALS; 1 postcard; 1 ANS] A collection of letters by the photographer Roger Palmer. In these succinct letters, Palmer discusses the commission and his proposed submissions.
[3 ALS; 1 TLS; 1 handmade Christmas card] Letters by the bookbinder Faith Shannon MBE, in which she discusses the commission to produce leather bindings for the deluxe editions of the exhibition catalogue, and includes an estimate of costs. The signed 15x10cm Christmas card features a blind stamped "Happy Christmas" greeting.
[5 ALS] Five letters by the artist Geoffrey Key. In these exuberant letters to Hanson, Key discusses names for the mailing list and travel to Carlisle; and thanks Neil Hanson - "Many thanks for your card it goes great with my bus pass, Yours antiquatedly, Geoff".
[2 ALS] A brace of letters by the artist Julia Hills, discussing the commission of her dolls and the time frame of work.
[2 ALS, 1 exhibition agreement] A collection of letters by the clockmaker Melanie Sproat. In her neat letters, Sproat describes the essence of her work as exploring "the contrasting colour, structure and tactile qualities of precious and base metals", and proposes a wall clock inspired by the rugged Cumbrian landscape. Her second letter concerns damage sustained by her works while in storage.
[1 ALS, 2 TLS] A trio of letters by Mike Davis on Mimram Stained Glass Studio headed notepaper. Davis discusses his proposed exhibits, including a five light window for St John's Church, Digswell. The artist also thanks Neil Hanson for all the hard work put in and suggests "a quieter occupation, wrestling alligators in the Everglades or something".
[1 TLS] A letter by the poet and novelist Glyn Hughes, in which he discusses his proposed submissions, describing how he had started to paint again after a break of 20 years; and suggests some commissioned pictures of Cumberland with poems to go with them.
[3 ALS] A group of letters by David Wright, ex Gregory Fellow in Poetry at Leeds University. Wright writes about the commission and his proposed submissions, including "Procession" and "Mirehouse". He also suggests other artists for the project including William Scammell of Cockermouth.
[1 ALS; 1ANS; 1 exhibition agreement ] A small collection comprising one letter, one note on a Stand magazine compliments slip, and an exhibition agreement by the poet Jon Silkin made in connection with the exhibition in 1982. In his letter to Hanson, Silkin discusses the commission and his proposed submissions, including "The Church is getting short of Breath".
[2 ALS] Two letters by Roy Fisher on University of Keele headed notepaper. Fisher’s thoughts on his submissions include "The Running Changes" and a piece on "a quest, among desolate military sites and barbed-wire littered beaches, for the shrimping grounds of Flookburgh, but it seemed likely to have strong negative tourist appeal, so I've desisted".
[4 ALS] A collection of letters by Roger Garfitt. In these warm and appreciative letters Garfitt discusses his proposed submissions to the exhibition, including ‘The Broken Road’ as "it's probably the best landscape poem I've done". Garfitt describes his first experience of the Lake District "at the age of twelve, leaning out of a coach window on a day trip, as rapt and enraptured as any Romantic on a walking tour."
[7 ALS; 4TLS; 2 postcards] A collection of letters by the photographer Paul Joyce. In his letters Joyce writes about his proposed submissions, including a collaboration with the poet Jonathan Williams. Joyce shows concern for the financial aspects of the commission and includes a list of expenses for attending the opening night.
[2 ALS] A pair of letters by the painter Norman Steven. Steven apologises for his tardiness in replying to the invitation to contribute and includes a 2.5 x 2cm colour photographic transparency of his oil painting, 'English Garden', which was not published in the Presences of Nature book.
[2 TLS; 1 ANS] Three letters by the travel writer and historian Geoffrey Moorhouse to author Neil Hanson, concerning their shared interest in rugby league. Moorhouse thanks Hanson for a signed copy of 'Blood, Mud and Glory: The Inside Story of Wigan's Year', and discusses other players' reactions to it. Moorhouse also declines to contribute to 'League Express' at that time as he has been commissioned by the RFL to write the official centenary history, and bemoans the loss of a volume of the early minutes.
[2 ALS, 3 TLS] A collection of five letters by the poet Fleur Adcock, discussing her proposed submissions and identifying the "northern town" in the poem 'Binoculars' as Cockermouth. Adcock also suggests "A World Made Visible", derived from Wordsworth, as a possible name for the exhibition.
[6 ALS] Six letters by the artist Brendan Neiland made in connection with the exhibition in which he discusses the commission and his decision to rent a cottage near Derwentwater in order to explore the area.
[2 ALS;1 ANS; 2 postcards] Five letters and postcards by the poet Rodney Pybus regarding the commission and his proposed submissions, including "Almanac of Herons" and "Elterwater". Pybus declines the offer of some reduced price limited editions: "Poets, unlike painters, don't have 'clients' - would that they did!"