[Artistic] London: Norman Parkinson and Lalla Ward, The National Theatre

The National Theatre

Designed by architects Denys Lasdun and Peter Softley and structural engineers Flint & Neill, it expands in three auditoria that opened gradually between 1976 and 1977.
The smallest one, the Cottesloewas recently  closed for refurbishment.
In its place, a bright red woody pop-up structure, in full contrast to the neutral  Béton brut concrete building.

It’s The Shed and it lightens up the riverfront.


The building was bound to create controversy with its Brutalist architecture, with concrete being predominant inside and out. Some feel it’s overbearing, cold, alienating… I love it!

DSC_1919April 2013 marked the centenary of the birth of  Norman Parkinson and the National hosts a free retrospective exhibition honouring the career of this eccentric figure, the ”father of photography” as he is widely regarded, the artist that influenced British fashion photography like no other.

Lifework: Norman Parkinson’s Century of Style

Lifework: Norman Parkinson’s Century of Style, until 27 May 2013

As we wandered about, this projection caught our eye. It turned out there was a second exhibition, Vanishing Act, by Lalla Ward. Whom, of course, we knew as Romana II in (Tom Baker’s) Doctor Who. She gave up acting very early but continued cultivating her artistic skills. Here she presented some exquisitely stitched pieces, reshaping textile into some brilliant works of art, inspired by the ability of insects and reptiles to metamorphose and blend into their environment. She even showcased the tools of her craft:


Photos by Konstantinos Implikian and Google.

London 24-29 April 2013

To be continued…


2 thoughts on “[Artistic] London: Norman Parkinson and Lalla Ward, The National Theatre

  1. Parkinson’s is a great show now. Some years ago I thought about buying one of his photographs from an exhibition at Sommerset House, but the price tag of 7K pound sterling made me revisit that decision )

    • You’re right, some of the prints are extravagantly expensive (I see same price tags for some vintage ones, currently being sold online)! Fortunately, from time to time, there are some free exhibitions like this one to humour us, mere mortals!

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