Extract from the Milwaukee Journal’s review of the touring ‘New British Painting’ exhibition – ‘Today’s British art lacks clout, but is routed in a fine tradition’ by James Auer, April 30th 1989.
‘But the single most evocative picture in the show is also the most meaningful in terms of 20th century British history.
It is “Sequel”, an immensely moving oil in which Jonathan Waller portrays not only the rusting, abandoned hulk of a steam locomotive but, in a larger sense, the death of the Victorian era, with its naïve trust in technology as the saviour of mankind and protector of long-held Western ideals.
Ironically, the locomotive is portrayed upside down. Thus, rather than inverting the picture, Waller inverts the subject. Whether or not the reference to Baselitz, that present-day Teutonic master of inversion, is intentional, it still points up the differences between British and German art – and adds spice to the competition in the bargain.’