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December 31st, 2012

This is the Camden Town desk from which the bible of british taste is published each week. There are many good things about living in NW1, but for years now all my old affection for the place has been drowned by the horribleness of being just around the corner from Camden Market.


Print by Bryan Illsley, painting by Peter Christian Clark, fairground rifle range Saddam target won at the Claygate Flower Show in the 1990s, Penwith Society print by Roy Conn, anti-war demo poster by David Gentleman.

Stowe Gothick Temple lithograph from Oxfam, ‘R’ stamp collage by Andrew Barrow ( a birthday present), wood block relief sculpture by Sir Jonathan Miller (a present), yellow compliments slip from David Hockney, framed postcard from Tracey Emin.

Small postcard picture by Bryan Illsley, ‘Cross’ painting from  a series by Michael O’Donnell for Truro Cathedral.

William Hamilton Etruscan vase painting from a stall on the Goldbourne Road, Xmas card by Breon O’Casey, pigeon fancier’s diploma from Spitalfield’s market thanks to a tip-off from Alice Pattullo.

Moth painting by Peter Christian Clark,  Amazon equestrian sculpture by Olivia Musgrave, £5 ceramic bust of a boy from a junk shop near the Porchester baths, now long gone.

Early C20th oil painting by John Firth, who was then teaching at the Chelsea Art School, or so he said.

I saw a similar photo tree in the sitting room at Farley Farm, the Sussex home of Surrealist Roland Penrose, where a photograph of Lee Miller’s eye is mounted on a metronome made by her lover Man Ray (Indestructible Object, also known as Object to be Destroyed, orig. 1932, destroyed Paris 1957,  Penrose Collection replica, 1959).
You can buy these trees on ebay, the photos are my own device.

Cornwall coast painting by Vanessa Gardiner, mugs and Arnold Machin figurines by Wedgwood.

Submarine print by Ravilious, paintings by Barbara Jones and Caroline Bullock, Tracey Emin tea towels from the  MOMA shop in 2002, now converted to rather saggy cushions.

Storage solution by Braque

Oxford ox maquette by Olivia Musgrave ( for the large ride-on version go to Oxford station), Leda and the Swan chalk drawing by Rose Hilton, large drawings by Frink, QEII plaster postage stamp maquette by Arnold Machin found under soiled blankets on a Goldbourne Road stall (£12).

John Piper watercolour,  oil painting by Felix Kelly, Breon O’Casey gouache painting and bronze figurines.

Wooden sculpture by Bryan Illsley, small paintings by Roy Conn, Nicky Haslam pin up pc.

birds by Georgie, Xmas card by Breon O’Casey, bowls by Norman Wilson for Wedgwood..

Charcoal drawing of the artist’s daughter by Ceri Richards, junk shop nude from Frome, oil by Felix Kelly, portrait in furs by the late great Glynn Boyd Harte, Bull by Arnold Machin,  Winged Victory by Alfred Gilbert, a lucky find, broken, in a Camden high street shop.

 [All images : copyright bibleofbritishtaste.com ]

5 responses to “In Camden Town.”

  1. Piers Wenger says:

    I really love reading your posts. Always something to lift the spirits.

    May I ask a rather bald question?

    In the post In Camden Town, you mention that the BoBT is compiled from the study featured in the photographs. There is a lovely plaster/putty colour on the walls which I have admired often. Is this a premixed colour? If it is would you mind sharing its name and manufacturer? Id love to use it in my home.

    Many thanks


  2. Ruth says:

    Dear Piers
    That is a nice compliment.
    The colour is a 20 yr old Farrow and Ball called Dead Salmon. Weirdly it is not dark or light absorbing and tho it is grey/brown it looks lavender-ish in certain lights. Works well with white joinery.

    v best from RG

  3. I must say that you have created a most magnificent, distinctive and real picture of people’s homes in Britain and, as a photographer and discoverer of these houses, have as much of an artistic eye as the owners of some of these places themselves. I especially love the Hewlings house in the Fenlands.
    All in all I am spurned on to fill my house more and add further clutter and colour.
    when can we go Car booting please?

  4. Ellen says:

    Camden Market was a nice enough spot in 1977; what’s changed? I lived very short times in Rochester Rd, Countess Rd, somewhere in Hempstead, Savernake Rd, and Gloucester Cres. that year, and enjoyed the market then. But had no money to buy anything. I did my real shopping in Exmouth Market.

    • Ruth says:

      The market is a huge ugly behemoth now and makes Camden a no.1 foreign tourist destination.Camden has lost its soul and offers nothing to local residents, Irish tramps and itinerants all dead and gone, shops all chasing the market customers, pubs all chains and many hundreds of fast food joints, the canal awash with their debris.

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