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Front cover: The Garage - Stanley Spencer 1929

 

OIKS AT WORK 

Two previous Oik covers have used Stanleyís images of Oiks in their natural habitat. Oik 4 had Workmen in the House (1935) and Oik 31 used the Sausage Shop (1934). The best example of this tendency is his huge series on the Cylde Shipbuilders which he did as a war artist in 1940. Hard to imagine Freud or Bacon doing anything similar. Perhaps the precursor to these forays into darkest Oikdom was The Garage. The RA Spencer exhibition 1980 note reads: 

Spencer had acquired a car in 1929 to facilitate travel to and from Burghclere, where he was working on the paintings for the Sandham Memorial Chapel. It was probably this novel experience which inspired him to paint The Garage, the first occasion upon which he tackled an industrial subject. It was followed in 1935 by an abortive commission to paint a large (40 x 6 ft.) picture for a factory belonging to Sir Montagu Burton; and, in 1936, by a large drawing and two small canvases, entered in a competition to decorate the Cunard liner Queen Mary. Spencer's talents in the painting of large-scale industrial pictures were only properly realised in 1940, in the shipbuilding scenes of Port Glasgow.