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Rock star teacher’s art show

PUBLISHED: 11:50 17 September 2009 | UPDATED: 17:10 25 August 2010

MEMORIES: Ralph and Barabara with some of Joan’s artwork.

MEMORIES: Ralph and Barabara with some of Joan’s artwork.

A ROLLING Stone s former art teacher will have her work displayed in a posthumous exhibition organised by her terminally-ill husband and his second wife.

A ROLLING Stone's former art teacher will have her work displayed in a posthumous exhibition organised by her terminally-ill husband and his second wife.

Curators at Hall Place in Bourne Road, Bexley, are putting on a retrospective show of the work of Joan Huntley - a partially-sighted art lecturer who counted Rolling Stone Keith Richards as a former pupil.

Tragically, her husband of nearly 50 years Ralph, 76, has developed terminal cancer, but he and his second wife, Barbara, are determined to press on with the exhibition.

Mrs Huntley, of Brent Close, Dartford, said: "The exhibition is something Ralph has wanted to do for his late wife for a long time and I back him whole-heartedly.

"It has given him something to focus on in the dark days. I hope this will be a very positive thing."

The Joan Huntley Memorial Exhibition, which spans 50 years' of her work, goes on show in the Austen Gallery at Hall Place from Monday until October 18.

Mrs Huntley said: "I never knew Joan but I feel like I have got to know her through her work. As a child she had eye problems and it deteriorated over time, but she didn't let it stop her in her work. After her lecturing days, she took up a voluntary role at a hospital in Cheam, teaching the patients to paint. She was a very caring lady.

"She was loved by many people, who are now spread across the world - including Keith Richards. I was amazed by my husband's Christmas cards - there were about 250 of them, all people who had been touched in some way by Joan."

The 71-year-old added: "What amazes me about Joan's work is the variety - from abstract to delicate, detailed work, from modern to very traditional pieces. She wasn't bound by style or convention, she experimented with and explored her art.

"She was a prolific artist but she painted for the love of it. We would like people to see her work and enjoy it, rather than let it languish in a draw somewhere. It deserves to be seen."

Joan, who died in 2007 aged 87, taught gifted guitarist Richards at Sidcup Art College in 1959, at the same time he met band-member Mick Jagger. Most of the work in the exhibition is for sale, at various prices.

l Call 01322 621235 or visit www.hallplace.com/events/exhibitions for more information.

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