I have an Arthur Berry picture of a woman’s head, a pastel drawing. I got it a couple of years ago and I remember him as one of my tutors when I was at college a few decades ago. He was an interesting man, author, artist, playwrite, poet. The potteries Lowry. His technique was unique. Dark pastels and charcoal, depicting the potteries, it’s surroundings, its characters. Laughter and humour is part of it. I love his work.
Saw this in Burslem today. On the main road from Cobridge up to Burslem.
Arthur Berry was an artist based in Stoke-on-Trent where he produced pictures of everyday figures and landscapes with a style of his own. Charcoal and pastels are used to chisel faces out of blackness, strokes of grey and white float on top of murky reds to bring out the dark shapes of buildings.
Arthur was also a writer and poet. We attended several of his plays when they were performed at the Victoria Theatre in Hartshill, Stoke-on-Trent in the 1980’s. We have a copy of a couple of his books. He was a very creative artist.
And I forgot! I don’t know if it’s the same day every year. Anyway I’ve written a little poem in its honour. The best Oatcake poem I ever read was by the artist Arthur Berry. Look it up if you can.
Oatcakes are a pancakes cousin,
designed for savoury
Try with cheese and tomato,
can be eaten cold,
but I prefer heat.
Chilli sauce would add a tickle,
beetroot would be neat.
Oatcakes are a breakfast tipple,
with a good strong cup of tea.
Lunch you find with salad topping
grated cheese and pickle too.
Tea for two an Oatcake feasting,
Maybe sweet with cream or jam.
Versatile the little Oatcake,
Made with simple love you see,
Stoke-on-Trents tortilla, tasty.
Makes a meal for you and me