Liz Salter’s response to the J Michael Anderson print : “Bretton Hall

Looking through the University’s on-line art collection I came across an entry for a print, “Bretton Hall” by Michael Anderson. This immediately caught my attention, as I had been a mature student at Bretton Hall College when “Andy” was head of the Art Department.

When I saw the print I was surprised by the view Andy had chosen, an unusual view of the Mansion plus plenty of park and a bit of building where I knew there was none. I took a copy of the print with me to locate the spot and realized that it was a 360 degree panoramic view and hence the other building in the picture. There was a definite photographic element to the print.

It immediately conjured up many memories and this seemed a worthwhile project to explore. The print was made when the campus was closed, six years after it merged with Leeds University. It seemed to me to represent a sense of loss, as the College had been a very vibrant place. As I looked at the print all sorts of images of Bretton flooded my mind. Andy Anderson is no longer with us and neither is another influential member of the Art Department and nor is another mature student who was a close friend. Thus to me the landscape of Bretton is haunted by “ghosts“ and I wanted to convey that emotion along with memories that are shifting and changing with time. I also wanted there to be photographic element as in Andy’s print, a reference to different views points. The photograph, too, is a snapshot of a moment that has passed and gone forever. Hence the title of my painting, “Homage”.