Sunday, 13 December 2015

Looking towards the city across Cornbrook and reflecting on style and taste

Now there is a moment as the train pulls into Piccadilly railway station when you get sight of the city.

It doesn’t last for long but it’s enough to tell me I am home.

And in the same way Peter’s new painting captures the same exciting mix of the old and the new, along with the iconic and the controversial.

It was painted looking out from the car park at Exchange Quay across Cornbrook to the city centre and is dominated by the Beetham Tower which continues to elicit a mix of opinions.

If I am honest I sway with the wind and have never quite made up my mind.

Some days it is the “abomination of desolation” dwarfing everything and offering nothing of style and beauty made worse by the way it dominates the skyline and is easily recognisable from as far away as Disley in the south to Hyde in the east.

And yet at other times I found myself reflecting on that simple observation that the city is constantly renewing itself and it is nonsense to think that Manchester should turn its back on the new.

After all there will have been more than a few who were appalled at the construction of Sunlight House in the 1930s, the CIS building in the 1960s, and slipping back even further will have castigated the Watts Warehouse which is that ornate Victorian Building which towered above its surroundings when it opened in 1856.

That said I have never reconciled myself to Spinningfields which could be any business centre anywhere in the world.

But then many of our Victorian and Edwardian buildings could be qdropped into Leeds, Newcastle or London and would pretty much blend in so enough said.

All of which just leaves me to ponder on whether Peter will wander down from Deansgate into the heart of Spinningfields and paint the shock of the new.

Painting; looking across Cornbrook to the city © 2015 Peter Topping


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