Ghika and Craxton at the British Museum

There is a great treat in store in Room 5 at the BM: a curious show of the work of the Greek artist, Ghika, and of John Craxton. They knew each other in Greece for many years and they also mixed there with the cosmopolitan world of Paddy Leigh-Fermor and his wife, Joan ( nee Eyres-Monsell).

One hardly ever sees a picture by Ghika on public display in England these days, although there was a time in the mid-20th century when his work was fashionable here. He knew Cyril Connolly ( and presumably Peter Watson), such that he was featured in Horizon in March 1946. There was also a retrospective at the Whitechapel in 1968.

One can certainly see the influence of Ghika on Craxton; their landscape treatment of scenes in Greece has similarities which become obvious when their work is juxtaposed in this way.

There is a large accompanying catalogue, which I am looking forward to reading. Why this show should be at the BM, with its crushing hordes of tourists and schoolchildren, is a mystery to me. Perhaps there is a curator who is a fan of the pictures.