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News | Published: Mon 7 Apr 2014

ImageCelebration event for last weeks of Craxton show

It is the last month to see A world of private mystery: John Craxton, RA (1922-2009) before it closes on 21 April.

By the beginning of April over 40,000 visitors had been to see the show which has received critical acclaim in the Telegraph, Times and Financial Times and was opened by Sir David Attenborough in December.

To mark the final weeks the Fitzwilliam is holding a Greek late night on Friday 11 April. A Taste of Greece celebrates Craxton’s love of the Greek lifestyle with food, drink and mezzedes in the courtyard, live Mediterranean acoustic music with Daphna Sadeh, and Craxton’s own dazzling Greek landscapes upstairs in the exhibition with after hours guided tours.

Prior to opening the exhibition Sir David Attenborough, commented on John Craxton’s life: "In Crete John learned what he described as a very salutary lesson for a painter - that life is more important than art. And he certainly relished life to the full. He enjoyed riding across Europe between Crete and London on his Triumph Tiger motorcycle. He loved parties, enjoying them in both embassies and village bars with equal gusto. He loved food - particularly eccentric, unusual food. One of my great pleasures in life was to be taken by John to his favourite harbour-side restaurant in Chania and be given a dish of boiled sea-creatures which even I, who am supposed to have some knowledge of the animal kingdom, found hard to identify."

John Craxton spent the majority of his life in Crete. His artwork celebrated the colour and warmth of the Mediterranean, ranging from luminous landscapes to portraits illustrating the Greek lifestyle, often including food, goats and cats.

The exhibition also includes a film by Sir David Attenborough exploring Craxton’s life and work. Listen to a podcast of Sir David Attenborough giving a personal introduction to the show.

A world of private mystery: John Craxton, RA (1922-2009) is open to Monday 21 April at the Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge. Admission is free.

"This small show does full justice to the inimitable work of John Craxton" - The Telegraph

Image: John Craxton, Still Life with Three Sailors, 1980-85 Photo copyright estate of John Craxton.