August 7th, 2013
It’s been a year of accidents (most recently one involving boiling water and me) and we’ve been much taken up with building works. As a result I’ve missed a few boats (deadlines for exhibition submissions, choice exhibitions, applying for things…). Also I haven’t found time yet to update this website and fix various glitsches – soon, I hope.
But I have caught a train or two. Most literally, a Southern Train – see the brand new piece above, not framed or priced yet. It’s quite a big beast, 2′x4′. I was struck by the complex reflections in the windows of the train I was about to board. Another train was on the opposite platform and you could see it and distorted architectural details of the station. I adore stations!
My solo exhibition at Sussex Prairies is still on. There is a Glyndebourne-style picnic there on 22 August with music by The House of Hats, with artists and sculptors with work on display also in attendance. Tickets available via their website. Also their annual Rare Plant and Art Sale on 1 September when the gardens will be at their peak with giant swirls and drifts of colour.
I have a fair bit of new work in the pipeline. The fine weather and new terrace have provided excellent conditions for making large sheets of paper! The cat has had a glorious time licking water from the paper bucket and lying on the paper as it dries.
July 26th, 2013
I’ve just revisited this interesting project started by renowned holographic artist Andy Pepper in 2006 – and it’s still there to see. Have a look; artists in over 120 countries ‘lit up’ blocks, singly or in a pattern, on a grid. The number of visits to each block was counted. I joined it in 2007 or thereabouts and, at random I confess, was featured as artist of the month in July 2008:
The piece used to illustrate it was my section of an Exquisite Corpse. This was made of recycled materials and put together as a whole with two other artists, John Lincoln and Stuart Goodacre as the centrepiece for a joint exhibition. The Torso has hung on my walls since; I’ve not tried to sell it as I have a sentimental attachment to the old geezer.
However, times move on, it’s good to move things on and out and create new mental space. The Torso (which has a beating heart – honestly!) has been on show with Nicholas Bowlby and in the course of things will probably pass out of my life. So here is a picture of the whole piece again:
and me putting it together:
I have several new large pieces nearly finished – not quite ready to photograph yet. The weather has been excellent for making and drying paper!
July 17th, 2013
There is going to be an event before long to publicise this exhibition of my botanical art and the work of other artists and sculptors placed all round the lovely Sussex Prairies. I have an enormous space to myself, the only snag being that people don’t all realise the existence of the attractive newly converted barn, the Garden Room.
Here are a few more snapshots:
May 24th, 2013
Better late than never. It was touch and go whether we’d be ready in time for Artists’ Open House – we had to send the builders away for the month and are still on student cookery mode in my studio.
The upside is a wonderful if temporary gallery space to display work!
Last weekend of the Brighton Festival coming up and we expect lots of visitors over the three days. We’ve probably already exceeded the 2000 mark. Fourteen artists: glass, ceramics, wood and metal sculpture, books, jewellery as well as prints and paintings. Honestly our best show yet.
Then it’s one day breathing space and off I go to hang work at Sussex Prairies: the new and vast Garden Room in the middle of these lovely gardens. Real painter’s gardens with swirls and drifts and blocks of planting with secret paths winding through. The exhibition will stay there all season with (I hope) regular additions and alterations.
And also, all being well, the Affordable Art Fair in Hampstead in mid-June. I can hardly think that far in advance at the moment. It might be melt-down after that.
April 5th, 2013
Too much going on at once. Suffice it to say that building works are nowhere near complete here and we are holding our Private View for Artists’ Open House in one month minus one day. Open House lasts for the entire month of May and is part of the Brighton and Hove Festival. Some links below.
I have an art-related event today, showing some botanically-related work at a friend’s book launch: the brilliant Allotment Diaries by Kay Sexton. In June the Affordable Art Fair follows on directly in Hampstead, plus a season-long show in the new garden Room at Sussex Prairies to which I’ve given the jocular title of Plants, Fruits Shoots and Leaves – an attempt to avoid the rather worthy-but-dull image of botanical art. Not that mine really aspires to that title; it’s more a celebration of favourite plants than faithful reproduction.
Above are some new pieces practically ready for framing: medlar, aubergine and quince.
March 7th, 2013
A detail from this hand-cast paper piece which tries to give a flavour of those rusty-surfaced shacks which magically populate the shingly stretches of shoreline near Dungeness. A random scrawl…left by whom? When? Such a mysterious place.
This is one of twelve pieces which are on show from today till Sunday at the Affordable Art Fair in Battersea. Do go along if you can, it’s always a fantastic day out. And do stop by Stand L13 if you feel like it: Nicholas Bowlby Art Gallery.
February 28th, 2013
Off with on thing, on with another. There never seems time to breathe. Twelve pictures have gone off to the Affordable Art Fair.
Now it’s full steam ahead with the little exhibition we’re putting on here. Week 4 of the wonderful Brighton Science Festival has Communication as one of its themes. This is our contribution:
‘Telling Tales’ at The Wolf at the Door. Artists have a go at explaining what they’re trying to say in their work, how and why. Painting, glass, self-portraiture, cartoons, collage, children’s art, a few surprises.
Plus: Charlie’s Dead. Who’s Charlie? Recollections. Of what? Auntie Rara at work. Why no tables, cows or horses? Science Story. Who’s hacking what with an axe and why? Where is the Dragon in Night Sky? And, Is Grandma Sad?
I’ve put it all together with a necessary speed and serendipity (I hope). The participating artists, seven or eight of us, can choose what to show – but have to explain the how, why, where and who, plus any back-story. This raises the biggest question, of course: why we do what we do. What is art? What indeed! Everyone has reacted by producing utterly different ‘stories’. Now, today and tomorrow, I have to find a coherent way of displaying it all.
February 15th, 2013
Perversely, this is the night sky at Midsummer. The ground is sodden, the days are still short, I long for summer….This is a new piece, not yet framed. Dark and intensely cobalt sky; stars and planets, and a suggestion of moonlight with a trace of silver leaf.
There’s an awful lot to do before summer. Probably what I need is a darkened room. First, I and a few friends are putting on a show here called ‘Telling Tales’ for the Brighton Science Festival (already well under way). The theme is communication; each of us will display some work (including painting, collage, film, cartoons, maps, music, maybe graffiti) and try to explain what we mean by it and why and how we set about it.
Next, in early March, the Affordable Art Fair in Battersea courtesy of the Nicholas Bowlby Gallery, a real jewel. Ten pieces or so for that. A brief break and time I hope for painting as well as organising Artists’ Open House at the Wolf at the Door, which runs here throughout May with twelve artists. Also in May, possibly, the International Art Fair in London.
From 1st June, a solo show for the season in the new Garden Room at the wonderful Sussex Prairies, for which I’m preparing a series of plant-related pieces. (I’m thinking of calling this ‘Plants Fruits Shoots and Leaves’!) Also in June, the Affordable Art Fair in Hampstead with Nicholas Bowlby.
That’s enough to be going on with….
January 28th, 2013
I’m posting this on the day our old kitchen (dark, decrepit and dingy) becomes a thing of the past. Unfortunately this means using my studio for the next few weeks (months?) as a temporary kitchen so I’m shifting different bits of my activity to different parts of the house.
This recent little piece in a box is about the (distant) past. Long, long ago…. Bar a bit of paint, it uses timeless materials: earth pigments, plaster, stone, shell, wood. The kitchen was old in a different way – clapped out, dispirited, dilapidated. The adjectives keep coming!
As to the future, it looks like being very busy: events are lining up and I need to keep working hard while the builders get on with bringing light and warmth to the heart of the house. Details on here soon about the coming season.
January 18th, 2013
This little piece-in-a-box was made last spring with recycled and found objects. Some were actually picked up on the walk, others are there to represent the sensations and sights of the occasion. It was cold and crisp and there was a thin coat of snow lying on the ground. A very special day with a special flavour.
For me a successful piece always has to have a distinctive flavour, the more intense (usually) the better. Another form of synaesthesia I guess.
Hove is already looking a lot more snowy than that this morning.