John Dyer Paintings feature in BBC Radio Times

Published on 12/26/2002

The Radio Times published today has a full page feature on John’s work with Alan Titchmarsh at Barleywood.

The Radio Times is distributed to millions of homes across the UK and this is a unique piece of exposure for a UK artist.

the Radio Times is offering signed prints by John for sale and each print is also signed by Alan Titchmarsh.

"Looking at your own garden through someone else's eyes is always interesting, but when the eyes belong to John Dyer then you hope that he will see something that allows him to use those vibrant colours he has on his palette.

John asked if he could spend a week painting my garden during July. He could not have chosen a worse time in terms of weather - it poured! But in spite of the rain he managed to conjure up some wonderful images.

I worried that my beds and borders would disappoint him after the floral riches of Eden and Tresco, but if that was the case he hid it well, and his canvases show nothing of the foul weather or of Barleywood's possible shortcoming's in the floral department. I kept nipping back to see him in between bursts of filming - partly to apologise for the weather, and partly because I couldn't wait to see how my garden was being translated into paint. And I wasn't disappointed.

As the week progressed, I came to know John and his style of painting rather better, and to marvel at his refreshing optimism in the face of potential meteorological disaster. I would come across him, perched on his low canvas chair, mixing his colours on paper plates and dashing in and out of the pavilion or the greenhouse to avoid the showers. And he never once became grumpy or depressed.

The result of his week with us is a wonderfully refreshing view of Barleywood, all the more poignant for Alison and me in that we are to leave here at the end of the year. But not only do we have great mementos of twenty years of gardening on our Hampshire hill, but we also have a new friend.

It is rare to meet someone who has the same appreciation of atmosphere, colour, texture and the magic that can be created in a garden, and in John we have found someone who understands exactly what we were trying to do. We'll be handing over Barleywood to a new owner, but we will gaze on John's images of our time here, and the garden we created, and shed a happy tear."

Alan Titchmarsh MBE