The Gerrard Chronicles 1999

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Avis' grandfather, Oscar Friedrich Saltzmann,
a designer for the cotton industry & professional photographer


Oscar's wife, Caroline neé Daniels, the grand-niece of William Daniels,
the Liverpool Artist on 14-8-1929 while on holiday


Rena and Ian moved to Bangkok. Lily (Liz) is doing work for the British Council in Milan as well as teaching English. She & Paolo visited us in August & are still clearly on good terms judging by the top photo! Now, all that arm of the family is wired, as their parents Margaret & John joined the Internet on moving to Nayland in Suffolk & shown in the bottom photo. Pretty place.

 Left: Paolo & Liz Right: Margaret & John 


At St Mary's Church, Wimbledon, Avis's second grandson, son of Jason and Caroline and brother of Freddie was christened. The party was at Revelstoke Road on a scorching hot day and when the children played 'Find the chocolate egg' they had to eat them quickly! The house has been sold at such a profit that they've been able to buy a five-story Regency house in Brighton. They'll be moving in the spring and it'll be seaside visits from now on.. Photo left: Spot the stars in mufti!


Richard has moved into clothing & can now fuse logos & lettering to cloth, which is in addition to his steady trade in the sailing community. Ken would have referred those unmarked vans to Richard if he had become Mayor! Photo right: This is Richard as the seasoned old salt he is.

Extended Family


Ken's rent-a-little-sister & husband are currently in the Antipodes & e-mailing back regular reports from Australia & New Zealand. At their splendid garden party in September, they were equipped with appropriate gear... They have been sending much-appreciated huge e-mail diaries of their trip.


None of us are getting any younger. Keith held a joint party with two other victims of age. He has finally disentangled himself from Spreadsheet Link, the company he founded & has sold to its workers co-operative. He has been occupying himself usefully as the Liberal Agent in Aylesbury. While 'Liberal' is an exceedingly dirty word in Islington, in a hick, rural-oik place like Aylesbury, they are the viable anti-Tory party, Labour being scarcely present.

Obituary - Sharon Bloch

Sharon had hardly returned to the USA (last year's news) before she contracted pneumonia, which exacerbated an undiagnosed heart condition. She had been the Islington Council Musuems Officer & a brilliant one at that. She & John helped us put up & take down Avis' exhibition in 1997, beyond the call of duty. But it was her joi-de-vivre & brilliance that everyone will remember.We & half Islington will be giving John a thought this Christmas.


From a small book written in 1879, two years before William Daniels’ death by William Tirebuck.

‘...simple, hidden, unpromising abode of one of the most remarkable men and artists of this, and indeed...of any other period....One dare not pity this conscious master of the brush. His works display too much independence of spirit and manner for this.’ Tirebuck did not know him personally, ‘I know his work and the value of that work-its extraordinary vigour, power and its close relationship to high art and humanity, I am convinced and with assurance claim it as one of the most extraordinary artistic influences I have experienced. .. I have, so to speak lived and breathed with a veritable contemporary worker-an unquestionable though by some disregarded genius: a man to whom his work and its wondorous and peculiar charms have been his life. ‘

‘If to some the name of a predecessor in style be recommendation, then the name of Rembrandt can be mentioned. His finished work is sufficient in quality and quantity to rank high in the line of original British Painters, men who abandon themselves to the promptings of their own genius and that which they most feel. His powers of rapid observation and dexterity in conveying impressions to canvas have been such as to make the word Talent tame and altogether inadequate... You see him today, and forthwith you acknowledge his power as you acknowledge it of great ones long since gone, and of whom indeed some of his works forcibly remind you.

...this English Artist has, in certain imaginative moods-in the treatment of poetical characters for example-left the Flemish prototype behind. I question if even Rembrandt would have been equal to the passionate abandonment shewn in the ‘Shylock’ by Daniels...while not displaying Wilkie’s humour, the figures are superior and more masterly in drawing, and there is a pathos of a key deeper than Wilkie could touch.’ Daniels, in my opinion, holds a most unique position in British Art...his are the few peaks which touch the sun, but are hidden by the clouds...his works generally, appeal to the heart first, and then to the artistic understanding.’

One of many anecdotes from the Liverpool Lantern magazines of 1881/2 which serialised his life:-
William fell in love with Mary Owen. ‘His ardent and fiery temperament seems to have made a wooer of him after the fashion of Benedick...he thrashed several rivals. About a week before the happy day he asked Mary to sit, at the house of a friend, with a handkerchief over her head and basket on her arms selling laces and ribbons. When the picture was finished , he took it, while the paint was still wet, to Sir Joshua Walmsley and sold him the picture, which nenabled the painter to pay for the license and purchase the wedding ring.

That picture ‘The Wedding Ring Picture’ Walmsley subsequently presented to the nation and it is now in the Victoria and Albert Museum with, amongst others, his own portrait and those of Sir Humphrey Davy, inventor of the miners safety lamp; portrait of George Stevenson (a marvellous resemblance of ‘the Father of the Railways’ a life-like picture and admirable painting for which Daniels received the munificent sum of fifteen guineas now (1881) worth hundreds of pounds) and a portrait of Charles Kean as Hamlet’.

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Contact: Ken Baldry or Avis Saltsman, 17 Gerrard Road, Islington, London N1 8AY +44(0)207 359 6294 or e-mail him or her This page's URL:
Last revised 30/11/1999 Copyright: Art & Science Ltd 1999 All rights reserved but print it off if you want to.