Exhibitions

Textiles and Prints; both at Matisse in the Studio

Posted by on Sep 20, 2017 in Discussion, Exhibitions, News | 0 comments

One thing you must do this autumn – sunlight and inspiration Make sure you go to https://www.royalacademy.org.uk/exhibition/matisse-in-the-studio – it’s a wonderful exhibition of an eclectic mix of artworks and the objects that inspired them.      Jonathan Jones, writing for The Guardian  said the exhibition was less about art and more about the creative process (as if this was a fault). For me, and anyone else studying art, it makes it even more important to see it not once but many times. Mr Jones felt that the exhibition amounted to ‘genius crowded out by bric a brac.’   As a lover of bric-a-brac myself this would also be an attraction – a genius’ s bric-a brac collection, what could be more appealing? It is so much more – Matisse’s beloved object that he carried around throughout his life and with which he populated his studio – old friends themselves- are transformed into some of his most famous works.  Laura Cumming describes it much better for me – ‘a few of his favourite things’ ….’reused, reworked, transformed into new phrases and poems’ To  see how much-loved possessions, everyday things,  that Matisse had lived with and had studied  over many  years were transformed into great inspiring art that has come to be part of our lives. The creative process is in some ways a mystery to be entered into rather than understood. Some feel it can never be understood. I have now worked with two artists at West Dean – Sarah MacCrae (jeweller and silversmith) and Kate Boucher – who both use processes to work through an idea and develop it into the beginning of a finished artwork.  Both suggest taking an image, then concentrate on one area and then working into it. Perhaps drawing it twice as large, or half as big, drawing it upside down. The image then becomes yours and you make choices about...

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CAS: how exhibition screen print was made

Posted by on Aug 21, 2016 in Discussion, Exhibitions | 0 comments

CAS: how exhibition screen print was made

This is a mono print i.e. it is the only one in existence that has this particular arrangement of colours and patterns. The terminology is very confusing as some would call a mono print one print made from a repeatable plate or block. This is a screen print and the photo stencil part of it is the repeatable block. I made it at Gainsborough’s House print studio whilst working with Annabel Ridley (who is currently exhibiting there). I first made the colour blocks – strong and deep – with repeated printing and overlaying of colour using paper stencils. Later (once these were dry) I overprinted the colour with patterns from a photo stencil made from found objects. Then I added a frisson of gold leaf. It was made over a period of days, reconsidering what would look right at every...

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OLSA : Along the Road to Santiago

Posted by on May 10, 2016 in Exhibitions, News | 0 comments

OLSA : Along the Road to Santiago

Last night had a very enjoyable  preview of exhibition of my prints and drawings inspired by walking the last 100 km of the Camino from Sarria to Santiago de Compostela. This distance is the minimum you need to do to be awarded a pilgrim’s certificate and was a most wonderful experience – although entirely free of Damascene sudden conversions. Very pleased that the mayor (who everyone agrees has been a stunning success) Heather Asker attended as well as Paul Rutter  of Rutter Uk. I admire the work his firm does in creating printed images on many different media. There were a number of friends there and I am very grateful for their support and interest. I will post some photographs over the next few days. Sarah Turpin (librarian) did  a fine job of organising the occasion. Looking forward to reading the comments book over the next few weeks  – it  is always interesting to hear other your images are interpreted by other people. This image seemed particularly to catch people’s attention – the beauty of the small cottages along the Camino was breath-taking. Learned so much about preparing for exhibitions. Intend to get my own hanging equipment as technically very hard to get the picture hooks and pictures loaded up....

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OLSA: Santiago de Compostela

Posted by on May 7, 2016 in Exhibitions, News | 0 comments

OLSA: Santiago de Compostela

Every year over 100 000 people make the pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostela. This phrase may be literally translated as St James of the Field of Stars – and relates to the story of how the tomb of St James was found. It is said that St James preached in Spain before returning to the Holy Land where he met his death as a martyr on the orders of King Herod Agrippa. He was beheaded and his body was thrown outside the city walls – his supporters retrieved it and managed to take it to Jaffa, whence it was miraculously transported across the sea to Galicia in a stone boat. It was undiscovered for over 800 years until a hermit, Pelagius, saw a lights in the forest and informed the local bishop, Theodemar who was led to the tomb of St James (the Greater) by a star – from where the expression field of stars is...

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OLSA: The Goya exhibition

Posted by on Dec 19, 2015 in Discussion, Exhibitions | 0 comments

Stunning exhibition at the National Gallery of portraits by Goya. Since seeing this exhibition I have decided definitely to renew my membership to the gallery as I went almost because I wanted to use it – the ‘moneys worth principle.’ That extra motivation made me go on a day when it was not really convenient. I came away quite stunned – the portraits were so lively and fresh.  I imagined that each individual could easily step out of their canvas and start a conversation.  As I walked round the early galleries it reminded me how we like to be remembered at our best – in our finery surrounded by the symbols of what is important to us or represents something  about us which we consider absolutely central to our view of ourselves. I thought – you never see anyone ill at a portrait gallery. How wrong I was. In one of the later rooms there is a portrait of a friend of Goya’s – `Friar Juan Fernandez de Rojas – ‘taking his last breath.’ It is a quite extraordinary picture (in graphite and chalk) of a dying man. The friar was apparently a great friend of his and, in earlier years in health, a reluctant sitter. He allowed Goya the intimacy of seeing his last moments. Further on there is a self-portrait of Goya being supported by his doctor, Arrieta. Goya developed a life-threatening, distressing illness. He made a good recovery and his portrait shows his enormous admiration for his physician. Goya went on to live a very full life – including a move to Bordeaux when he was over 80 years old, because of his political differences with the rulers of Spain. A wonderful artist and  engaged interpreter of the world in which he lived and lived...

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OLSA: Road to Santiago exhibition

Posted by on Nov 25, 2015 in Discussion, Exhibitions | 0 comments

OLSA: Road to Santiago exhibition

Delighted to hear that my work has been accepted for an exhibition at Saffron Walden library in 2016. It happens that the dates offered coincide with the time I was actually walking the Camino in 2011 – so that feels poetic. I am looking forward very much to working on more images for this exhibition and also providing some information about the Camino pilgrimage about which I knew very little before I planned to go. It is easier to start with the destination – the Cathedral of St James in Santiago de Compostela – which houses the shrine of the apostle of St James. I have attached one photograph which we took when we delightedly arrived after our 100 km (70 mile) walk through Galicia  in north west Spain.   It was interesting to hear the story on the news yesterday that the monks at Glastonbury had possibly exaggerated the stories attached to their monastery to encourage pilgrimage – which was a great source of income for towns in the middle ages. It is clear that the medieval rulers of Galicia  promoted the story of the burial of St James in Galicia – requiring miraculous transport of his body from The Holy Land –  to help support a   deprived area of Galicia. However it came about the pilgrimage to the cathedral of St James, is a great inspiration and time of reflection for many – including those without formal religious belief. The name of the city is very poetic – St James of the Field of Stars (compostela) and the city itself a jewel of medieval architecture....

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