Wednesday, June 04, 2008

Chelsea Arts Ball

Searle contributed to the decor of the 1954 Chelsea Arts Ball (-the theme that year was 'The Seven Seas') with a 'mermaid' construction 50 feet tall! Searle's style was beautifully translated into three dimensions under his supervision.

Here is one of Searle's preparatory sketches for the central model.

'The Seven Seas', 72 x 52cm (28 3/8 x 20 1/2in) watercolour, gouache and pencil.
This drawing was also used included in the event's programme.

Here is the full programme

The Times January 1st, 1955

In the Searle Archive, Hannover I found several photographic prints showing the models Searle constructed in detail.  In addition to the central construction with its King Triton & mermaid figures there are numerous other submarine creations.  Evidently he also painted a back-cloth too.