Nick Moore

My Father Speaks of Arthur by Nick Moore


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Original oil painting titled "My Father Speaks of Arthur" by Nick Moore.

Oil on canvas, 2021. 

Signed and framed.

Painting dimensions 800mm x 800mm.

Framed by the artist in simple charcoal grey frame.

The painting is a homage to famous Potteries painter, poet, and playwright Arthur Berry (1925-1994) by Nick Moore. It was painted in January 2021 as part of his lockdown series of paintings.

The painting was inspired after Nick was talking with his father, painter David Moore who was taught life drawing by Arthur, Nick also wrote a poem alongside the portrait of the same name which is below:

My father speaks of Arthur

My father speaks of Arthur

studying a rheumatic pit ghost

with burr-oak knuckles, 

cradling a slow-sup ale.


A dying fire,

from gob pile gatherings, 

spots resinous char

on ashen, mangy pelt.


No yelp or twitch

from slumbering dog,

its scurfy hide scorched

to fire-thickened felt. 


And slag-ash dust

dulled the quarry tiles 

of the ruddy hearth

where the artist watched.


Our playwright entertained

with mundane tales,

a glut of rapt creatives,

‘Once Upon a Sunday’. 


Sharing glimpses

of his china childhood

where ranks of council terraces

eroded verdant greenway.


Most time idling,

but always gathering

a dry eyeful of pot bank toil,

a dearth of flamboyance.

Encounters round the Potteries

and throwaway probing

elicited little urgency,

“I’m not really a busy man.”


I’ll not pretend to know Mr Berry,

as did ‘The Hippy’ or ‘Eli’.


My father speaks of Arthur, alas, not I. 

Nick Moore Jan 2021

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