Sea rescue drama at new art exhibition in Cromer
- Credit: Archant
An exhibition of paintings depicting the rescues of Cromer lifeboat legend Henry Blogg opens at the town seafront museum named after the local hero this weekend.
The show, by well-known maritime artist Mick Bensley, includes compelling scenes ranging from Blogg and his crew's 1917 rescue of 11 men from the shattered hulk of the SS Fernebo, their 28-hour battle to save 15 crew from the Dutch tanker SS Georgia in 1927, and the rescue of 29 crew from the stranded Italian vessel the Monte Nevoso in 1932.
Sheringham-born Mick, who studied at Norwich School of Art, developed at love of the sea as a youngster.
After reading the Cyril Jolly biography Henry Blogg of Cromer in the 1960s, he produced his first watercolour painting of a maritime rescue.
'It was the descriptions of the rescues, the impossible feats against overwhelming odds and the selfless courage of the men that inspired and motivated me,' Mick explained.
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While working in London as a designer and illustrator, he continued to paint maritime scenes in every spare moment.
He returned to his home county to paint professionally in 1980 and has since gained a reputation as a highly skilled marine artist.
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'A great deal of meticulous research is involved and it takes some two-and-a-half years to complete a set of working drawings, sketches and paintings,' he said.
As well as staging four successful exhibitions of paintings and books depicting the rescues of Henry Blogg and Cromer's lifeboat crews, Mick has produced and exhibited work featuring the rescues of Wells, Blakeney and Caister lifeboats.
He now lives and works in Rottingdean, on the Sussex Coast, where he divides his time between painting and teaching watercolour techniques.
The Rescues of Henry Blogg, featuring paintings by Mick Bensley, runs at The Henry Blogg Museum, The Gangway, Cromer from 10am-5pm on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Mick will be in attendance each day to chat to visitors and sign copies of his books. For more information, phone 01263 511294.