Find Giorgione's Lost Paintings In Clapton: Reviewed

Giorgione in Clapton, The Tram Depot ★★★★☆

Tabish Khan
By Tabish Khan Last edited 22 months ago
Find Giorgione's Lost Paintings In Clapton: Reviewed Giorgione in Clapton, The Tram Depot 4
An installation view of some of the works on display

Giorgione was an enigmatic Venetian painter. That's probably partly to do with the fact many of his works have been lost. And that's why the current Royal Academy exhibition failed to excite us; the artist's range may have been diverse, but that's no good when the diversity isn't there to see.

Now though, one artist in Clapton — who prefers not to be named — has recreated over 30 of Giorgione's work and displayed it all in one room — a labour of love that's taken 15 years.

These include existing works from The National Gallery and Wallace Collection, reduced in size over time (it was common practice to cut off edges if they got damaged or to fit the work into a particular frame) and now expanded back to their original scale in these recreations.

Other works are based on existing sketches where the painting no longer exists. They are remarkably faithful to source material so if no colour was included then the larger painting remains uncoloured.

Diversity abounds with religious scenes, portraits and landscapes. Our favourite work truly stands out — two nude women sleep as they are approached by small demoniac creatures, while in the background silhouettes rush around a building in flames. It's surreal and not what we expected from Giorgione. Not expected, but exactly what we hoped for.

The art world shies away from recreating lost works, so it's great to see one artist take on the challenge himself. Giorgione in Clapton is a well researched exhibition and there will be live period music played during the run too. The setting of an old horse tram depot in Clapton, meanwhile, is a fascinating and fitting venue.

Giorgione in Clapton is on at The Tram Depot, 38-40 Upper Clapton Road, E5 8BQ until 21 May. Entrance is free and it's open Tuesday-Sunday, 11am-5pm.

Art fans should also check our top 10 and most talked about exhibitions for this month.

Last Updated 13 April 2016