'Broad of Church and broad of mind,
Broad before and broad behind,
A keen ecclesiologist,
A rather dirty Wykehamist'
(John Betjeman, 'The Wykehamist')
'Were you a prefect and head of your dormit'ry?
Were you a hockey girl, tennis or gym?
Who was your favourite? Who had a crush on you?
Which were the baths where they taught you to swim?'
(John Betjeman, 'Myfanwy')
William of Wykeham (1320-1404) was Bishop of Winchester and the founder of Winchester College. Winchester College is a well-known boysï¿½ independent school, and representative example of an English public school. Winchester has existed for over six hundred years - the longest unbroken history of any school in England. It is one of the original nine English public schools as defined by the Public Schools Act 1868. The noun 'Wykehamist' is named after William
of Wykeham and refer to a student enrolled in (or graduated from) Winchester College.
Martin van Zomeren is pleased to present 'We Wykehamists', Andrew Lewis'
first solo presentation at the gallery.
Home-made time travel is the common theme which unites the shown paintings and sculptures. The works are narratives sentinels guarding fragile memories and sentiments. The sculptures act as lyrical robots. Their forms counterpoint their content. They are works of time compression that enable us to see more clearly both our modern and the past worlds, the one accentuating the other, giving each a special simultaneous significance. 'We Wykehamists' expresses the aforementioned desires and specifically links - through John Betjeman's poem - the anecdotal to the universal. Lewis' narratives (as the title character described in John Betjeman's verses) stand for the perceived oddness and peculiarity in us all.
Andrew Lewis (b. 1968, London) lives and works in Argenton sur Creuse, France. Recent solo presentations include 'Pioneer Association', Art : Concept, Paris (2009), 'Crown Imperial', Gimpel Fils, London (2006) and 'Les inadapts Attitudes, espace d'arts contemporains, Geneve (2005). Public collections include Arts Council Collection, London, FRAC, Alsace and Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam.
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