Nottinghamshire-born artist Peter Smith was specially commissioned by the Artmarket gallery to paint an inspired piece on the pub, situated in South Dalton, near Beverley, which was unveiled at the Impossimal Dinner Party. ‘The Secret Pantry’ event was highly anticipated as Smith is one of the Artmarket’s best-selling artists and the night was sold out.
Greeted with wine and canapés on arrival, the guests were invited to enjoy a private viewing of Peter’s work while the award-winning artist, joined by fellow artist and wife Jayne Smith, mingled with guests, greeting and chatting all things Impossimal. The pub was buzzing, the guests bursting with conversation.
After being invited to their seats, Robert Power, director of the Artmarket gallery, opened the evening with a short introduction of the artist, followed by James Mackenzie - Pipe and Glass chef/owner, who introduced the menu - a delicious four-course dinner.The menu was designed by Mackenzie, inspired by Smith’s artwork. To begin was ‘Rumbling Tumbly Treat’, a delicious slow cooked pork belly with Dalton salami, Waldorf salad and Yorkshire cidre reduction followed by ‘Nettling Pester Pot’, a scrumptious little cup of scampi soup with garden nettle pesto.
After starters, each guest received a unique, resin sculpture courtesy of Peter generating much excitement in the room as all compared their gifts.
Onto the main course, titled ‘Rumplingly Flavoursome Fine Fresh Fare with a Dash of Flamboyant Springtime Flair’ - a rump of lamb with confit lamb belly, boulangere potatoes, Yorkshire asparagus, pickled red onion and Bleasdale Bewety sheep’s cheese salad with salsa verde; which fulfilled every adjective in the name of the course. Finally, ‘Scrumdiddly Delight’ - an exquisite, white chocolate and raspberry delice with raspberry sorbet, topped off with cinder toffee.
The moment arrived for Peter to take to the floor to talk about the commissioned piece. Addressing an enrapt audience, Peter spoke about his process, explaining that he had also written a short story to accompany the painting, which involved James and Kate.
“Between 1853 and 1863 four volumes and seven pages of text went missing from a set of thirteen diaries written by a C.Dodgson, ripped out and discarded by unknown hands. The whereabouts of the missing pages remain a mystery but rumour has it that each page holds a secret, a secret that only reveals itself at the right place and time.”
Smith told guests how James and Kate brought back to life the old Pipe and Glass Inn
(a building that dates back to the 15th century, it stands on the site of the original gatehouse to Dalton Park). The story entwined Eliza Acton, the author of the ‘Modern Cookery For Private Families’ and the author Lewis Carroll. The Pipe and Glass was revived with the help of two creatures, two new Impossimals that feature in the piece.
That night Peter, the man who always brings you something different, shared that his Impossimal world will begin another chapter - Wonderland!
“The Pipe and Glass is just the start of a story; Wonderland is real, there are pieces of it everywhere, you just need to know where to look.”
It was the moment everyone had been waiting for. As Peter’s story came to an end, the anticipation in the room was palpable as everyone gathered around the piece.
Amongst excited guests, Peter revealed his new creation; two new, beautiful Impossimals cooking up culinary concoctions. Peter explained that all the objects featured in the piece (such as a strawberry, a duck, a white turnip) were the resin sculptures given to each guest - so they could take home their own part of the piece.
The original was on display along with as a small number of highly collectable boutique limited edition giclee prints, signed by both Peter Smith and James Mackenzie.
An auction was then held by the Artmarket gallery for a maquette (the French word for scale model, a maquette is a small-scale model of an unfinished sculpture) depicting two Impossimals from the painting. This is the first maquette Peter has ever released and all the money generated in the auction was to be donated to the Castle Hill Hospital Cancer Unit. A wonderful £3,400 was raised!
‘Drinkydips’ coffee and doughnuts were brought out to finish the evening as excited people received their pieces and had them signed by Peter.
In addition to starting a new series, Peter had more fantastic news; LA based Suppertime Entertainment and animation partners Spider-Eye have snapped up Peter’s Impossimals to turn them into an animated series, for worldwide distribution.
When you think of the fun, colourful, world Peter Smith brings us through his paintings – it’s hard to imagine that all started with a small book of black and white illustrations called “The Magic Printer” he owned as a small child.