Leaving Hammersmith Apollo – Original Painting
About the Image
The Art Deco style Hammersmith Apollo exists for live entertainment. Located in Hammersmith, West London, it is one of the UK’s largest and best-preserved original theatres.
Since 1932 the venue has proudly hosted the talk of the town. Mind blowing top-class entertainment including the greatest acts of all time – The Beatles, The Rolling Stones and Bob Marley.
In this painting, Cathy Read captures the disorientating moments as traffic speeds by as you leave a Hammersmith Apollo performance on a wet Saturday evening. The heavy rain has stopped but the ground is still wet from the downpour. The shiny pavement reflects all the lights glowing amidst the trees, on the cars and bus.
Brilliant Hammersmith Apollo
Dark yet brilliant, with jewel-like colours. Ruby red, emerald green, blue sapphires in gold settings. Bright lights twinkle as cars, racing to the next set of traffic lights, blur past. They throw up water spray as they travel along. Shapes merge into one another, rainy reflections add to the confusion as colours on vehicles flow down the image.
In one long sweep, the road curves to the right. Bordered by railings; stark black objects outlined against startling lights and reflections. The tarmac and paving slabs glisten with moisture. Fluid water masks outlines and shapes. The pavement follows this curve and is itself bounded by the railings –forcing our senses to return to the concrete world after an evening of flighty fantastical entertainment. A line of yellow striped bollards leaves the impression of bees, or small soldiers on duty, standing in line and waiting for instructions to guide us back to safe reality.
In the distant far-right stands a solitary figure. Alone in blue. The only people around are travelling in cars. So many vehicles milling around transporting a mass of humanity – while the remote outline sets a lonely scene. Despite the unseen company, they remain faceless and unseen. To all intents and purposes, we are lone observers…
Alone is not necessarily a bad thing. Concerts are bright social events, yet also intensely personal experiences evoking delicate feelings that may take time to process. Leaving an event, we want to share our thoughts and feelings with our companions, but sometimes we need to figure out what those thoughts and feelings might be as the entertainment induced buzz comes to rest.