The centrepiece of this exhibition, shown for the very first time, is a three-metre-tall painting, The Fur Coat, “Hazana”. It tells the story of Anthony Green’s mother’s second marriage, seen through his eyes as her thirteen-year-old only child. Green has worked on the recently finished painting since 2005.
It incorporates a life-size figure of his mother, Madeleine Dupont, complete with mink coat, silk scarf and handbag, and contains a fragment salvaged from a destroyed work of 1963. Three-dimensional works extend the painting; drawings and watercolours reveal the process of its making; and documents and photographs add to the story.
A life time depicted for Green’s mother, Miss Dupont. The interesting thing at this exhibition was the prelim drawing and setting out of the stage by Green before he arrived at the finished piece.
One such is the drawing above, a centrepiece with to the written bio clips of Ms Dupont.
The size of these works is LARGE. The written piece above has handwriting a bit larger than usual so must be A0 at least, but the work on the right, the main component of this exhibition has a full sized fur coat which belonged to the late Ms Dupont! Transcript below.
Transcript of text from The Second Marriage / The Fur Coat, 2005
Left hand side of the drawing, from top
Decree Nisi Absolute. (Divorce) G1953 (D) No. 163. Marie Madeleine Green petitioner and Frederick Sandall Green, Respondent and Stanley Joscelyne – Party cited. Referring to the decree made in this cause on the 12 day of April 1954, whereby it was decreed that the Marriage had and solemnized on the 14th day of January 1933, at Notre Dame de France church in the District of St. Martin in the County of London, between Frederick Sandall Green RESPONDENT and Marie Madeleine Green, then DUPONT, Spinster PETITIONER be dissolved by reason that since the celebration thereof the PETITIONER had been guilty of adultery. Unless sufficient cause be shown to the court within six weeks from the making thereof why the said Decree should not be made absolute and no such cause having been shown, it is thereby certified that the said Decree was on the 28 day of May 1954, made final and absolute and that the said Marriage was thereby dissolved. Dated the 28 day of May 1564 (List no 38). Her Majesty’s High Court of Justice – District Registry. 31 May 1954. Brighton.
Stepfathers don’t smell the same as your own father’s washing arrangements, so the bathroom at Friars Avenue was a challenge. Mum always had a manicure tray available. Her long red painted nails and elegant fingers fascinated me and she dunked her diamond rings in gin to clean them.
Post Office Overseas Telegram – Chateauroux. 488 23 9 1715 – Joscelyne Dinner Party Hungaria Restaurant Lower Regent Street London.
Our thoughts are with you. Best wishes for your happiness- love Dupont Lissac Renault.
In 1933 married to the first and only “love of my life” – eighteen years later my mother was trapped in a relationship with an unfeeling, uncommunicative drunk. By the 1950s Stanley was spending nights sleeping in his car on Hove sea front – across the road from a very comfortable home and the probable assaults of a violent wife – perpetually drunk on sweet sherry.
Dad snarled “Stanley Joscelyne is old enough to be her father- and he’s a lobster merchant.” He never recovered from the shock of Madeleine’s leaving. His pride, well lubricated by alcohol, led straight to death at 61.
Le Raincyle 8 Août 69, Ma chère Mado – J’ai reçue une lettre d’Isabelle m’annoncant la triste nouvelle que ton mari etait décede d’une crise cardiaque. C’est très triste pour toi, mais pour lui c’est mieux que rester infirme. Affectueux baisers. J. Gilbert
(I received a letter from Isabelle giving me the sad news that your husband has died of a heart attack. It is very sad for you, but for him it is better than staying infirm. Affectionate kisses. J. Gilbert.)
Driving home from business in Billingsgate Market the Joscelynes stopped off at a shop near Camden Road Railway Station. Here they bought the gold painted wooden mirror, a fringed wastepaper bucket and an upholstered brocade footstool. On another day, nearer home, they stop on the Archway Rd near Highgate tube station at an “Antique” Emporium and purchased the book
Driving home from business in Billingsgate Market the Joscelynes stopped off at a shop near Camden Road Railway Station. Here they bought the gold painted wooden mirror, a fringed wastepaper bucket and an upholstered brocade footstool. On another day, nearer home, they stop on the Archway Rd near Highgate tube station at an “Antique” Emporium and purchased the book case.
Stanley Joscelyne was sole owner of a wholesale shellfish supplier- E. Joscelyne and Sons. When he married Madeleine he became a joint shareholder with her in a wet fish supplier – Sydney Barber & Co (a business taken over by her father in 1940). Mr and Mrs S. Joscelyne continued trading until 1969. They sold Sydney Barber and transferred E. Joscelyne to David Joscelyne (Stan’s son by his previous marriage).
Right hand side of the drawing, from top
Dear Mummy, I hope you are well. So glad you have seen a solicitor and things are looking up. Give Helène my love. I will write again soon. Love Anthony 10/53.
“Errard.” Old friends of the Dupont family who were furniture makers in Euston Rd made the wardrobe c.1914.
Mum and Stan were married on 9 June 1954. Her parents had retired to France – after 50 years living in London. Furniture from their old home helped to furnish their new house at 12 Friars Avenue, Friern Barnet, N20.
My mother’s dressing table at 17 Lissenden Mansions fascinated me; peeping into her hand mirror; the huge crystal powder bowl was irresistible; inside the pink powder fluff was very soft. This dressing table garniture – one of the few things she salvaged from her first marriage.
Home for the weekend from boarding school my mother and Stanley proudly showed off the new decorations of their bedroom. Her parents’ double bed, resplendent with a recovered burgundy eiderdown. Dark red soft furnishing set the scene. Making light conversation Mum said that Stanley could “stand on his head”, which he instantly demonstrated! Wearing a dark blue striped business suit and shiny black shoes.
(N.B. for the picture – no suit – only long johns, sock suspenders and vest.) I admired my stepfather – he never tried to bribe me – and taught me to saw a straight line.
The contraceptives were kept in Stan’s little bedside drawer.
My father was eleven years older than Madeleine when they married in 1933. Many years later Mum told me that he had been the love of her life. In spite of her grandmother warning that “this young man was a drinker”. Mum dismissed the warning and married him.
My father carried his drink well he never hit her but he did mental cruelty v. well. It would seem that he loved Johnny Walker more than sex.
- S. Green was stylish, humorous, terrific company when he tried – but too often, leaving his wife at home to go drinking with his rowing pals and male friends. My dad was intelligent and suffered fools not at all. All sons aim to be like their fathers. At the time of the divorce we had terrible rows. Since his death in 1961 I have missed his wit.
My mother died in 2004. She was married to my father for 18 years. Then married to Stan for 15 years. She made a very bad widow for the next 32 years.
This small oil painting hung in my mother’s lounge for over 50 years. A weekend boarder home for the week-end on a rainy Sunday afternoon, my mother and I picked a yellow lupin, Belgian poppies, a rose and some syringa and stuffed them in an old vase.
On holiday in central France as a schoolboy, my French cousin and I pinched a couple of huge Sunflowers near the Forrest of Châteauroux. Back with my aunt and uncle I painted my version of van Gogh’s Sunflowers. My mother hung it in her new home at 12 Friars Avenue, Friern Barnet, N20.
Souvenir de Jeunesse – Madeleine Joscelyne’s Lounge, 1967
The Dupont Sisters, 1972.
Madeleine à 20 ans, 1961
Madeleine Dupont’s dream, 1967
The Two Bedrooms, Embassy Lodge – Anxiety, 1994
Goodbye Dupont Girl I, 2000
The Dupont Sisters Meeting in Heaven, 2004
Goodbye Madeleine – Bonjour Mado, 2004
Madeleines Ashes – The Crystal Powder Bowl, A Memorial, 2015 – work in progress
The Heaven and Earth Machine, 2004.
Final working drawing for ‘The Second Marriage/ Mr and Mrs Stanley Joscelyne c. 1955.’ 12 Friars Ave, N20.
Height 118”. Width – 89”. 330 cms x 226 cms.
January, July, August 2005. April 2016. Work in progress.