Volker eichelmann with stephen tennant


Private view and book launch

Thursday 8 december 2016

6.30pm until late

WORK is pleased to host the private view and book launch of Gutters of Gold: Volker Eichelmann with Stephen Tennant.


In 1925, Stephen Tennant (1906–1987), perhaps the most intriguing of England’s “Bright Young Things”, contemplated a novel about “high life with a capital H & full of crude impossibilities”. 

He favoured amongst other titles The Monkey House as well as Gutters of Gold, but despite his elaborate preparations the book itself never materialised. Over the course of his sequestered life in a Wiltshire manor house, Tennant produced abundant drawings of potential covers for the book he was never to write.

Now, 30 years after Tennant’s death, Volker Eichelmann has visually resurrected Gutters of Gold as a publication that brings together his own collages and paintings alongside a rare selection of Tennant’s neglected oeuvre. As an artist’s publication, Gutters of Gold innovatively highlights and expands on preoccupations shared by both artists. Here, reflections on landscape gardens and water-features, Greek antiquities and ruination, horticulture and interior decoration unfold in a succession of evocative scenarios conceived by Eichelmann under chapter headings such as “Weekend in Valmouth”, “Mme d’Arpajon gets Drenched” and “Dinner at van Storck’s”.

The writer Philip Hoare, author of Serious Pleasures: The Life of Stephen Tennant, provides a brief introduction which contextualises Eichelmann’s response to Tennant’s work. 

With Tennant figuring amongst a number of historical and fictional protagonists who populate Eichelmann’s work, Gutters of Gold will provide a unique opportunity to appreciate the wider conceptual remit of Eichelmann’s practice.