Sev Ickes, L.S. Lowry, the Five Penny Piece and the Battle of ‘astings

Wow, what a title! Bet you’re wondering what you let yourself in for reading a piece with a title like this.

The other day I got a great big hug from Sev Ickes. I call her “the lady of the smile.” Sev (my opinion) is one the VERY best local artists.

Sev, the lady with THE smile

Sev, the lady with THE smile

Sev’s painting are in a style called “naive”. The term “naive” refers to artists untrained in the formal sense. Sev’s  works are literally filled with imagination and straight-from-the-heart reflections of her view of the world. here’s a couple of examples:

Inside Story

Inside Story

Winesong Poster

Winesong Poste

You can find more examples on Sev’s website.

Sev’s style is a VERY happy naive style. My other favorite naive style artist is a man called Lowry (L.S. Lowry). Lowry (1 November 1887 – 23 February 1976) was an English artist. Many of his drawings and paintings depict Pendlebury, Lancashire, where he lived and worked for more than 40 years, and also Salford  (home of Man U) and its surrounding areas.

Lowry is famous for painting scenes of life in the industrial districts of North West England  in the mid-20th century. He developed a distinctive style of painting and is best known for his urban landscapes peopled with human figures often referred to as “matchstick men”. Due to his use of stylised figures and the lack of weather effects in many of his landscapes he is sometimes characterised as a naive “Sunday painter”, although this is not the view of the galleries that have organised retrospectives of his works. A large collection of Lowry’s work is on permanent public display in the Lowry, a purpose-built art gallery on Salford Quays named in his honour. Lowry rejected five honours during his life, including a knighthood  in 1968, and consequently holds the record for the most rejected British honours. A very unassuming man who once said, “I am not an artist. I am a man who paints.”

Far better than me trying to tell you about Lowry listen to this song by the Five Penny Piece – one of my favorite folk groups when I was in my teens. The vid has a wonderful collection of Lowry’s paintings in it.

Now where does the Battle of ‘astings (in 1066) fit in?  Easy Peasy – it’s my favorite “song” (poem?) by the Five Penny Piece. If you’re not too clear on probably the most pivotal battle in English history this is a good primer: