Sunday, 18 May 2014

Camille Fox, Painter of Cosmopolitan Alexandria, Flies into London

The grounds of Kenwood House this afternoon.

Selfie of Camille, Michael and Tony
at Kenwood in London today.

It has been a beautiful day today in London, bright sun and blue skies and so warm that Camille Fox nearly expired and had to be seated in the shadow of a large umbrella on the dining terrace at Kenwood House where we had lunch.

Camille and her husband Tony are passing through London on their way to Sydney from New York where Camille opened an exhibition of her paintings, Memories of a Vanished Past, at the Artifact Gallery in Manhattan.

Camille was born and raised in Alexandria, Egypt; her childhood memories there and the stories of her parents have become the stuff of many of her most delightful paintings - which have also been inspired, I am pleased to say, by the photographs in my book Vintage Alexandria.

Click here for an earlier post on my blog about Camille.  The full range of Camille's paintings can be seen by clicking on her website here.  
Picnicking amidst mountains of flowers at Kenwood.

After lunch on the terrace at Kenwood House we went for a stroll in the grounds where seeming flocks of tropical birds - as the English become the moment there is a bit of sun - were flapping their wings, preening their feathers and feeding their young.

A Barbara Hepworth sculpture, Monolyth Empyrean,
in the grounds of Kenwood House.

I very much enjoy Camille's Egyptian paintings which capture with charm and humour the days when Alexandria was a cosmopolitan city. 

Athinaios, a famous restaurant and café along the Alexandrian Corniche.

Dancing at someplace like the Cecil or Monseigneur in Alexandria.

The Rialto Cinema, an Art Deco landmark in the Rue Safia Zaghloul, where Lawrence Durrell and his girlfriend Eve Cohen went to see Casablanca during the war, in 1943. Very recently, suddenly and covertly, the Rialto was torn down; another piece of Alexandria lost.

An afternoon on the Mediterranean in Ramleh.