I’m managing a March post by the skin of my teeth. It’s been a busy month. Weather hasn’t been good enough yet for papermaking when I’ve had a day free for it.
March 8th-12th saw the Battersea Affordable Art Fair. Three of my paintings went there with the Nicholas Bowlby Gallery, This one, by far the largest, was sold: Night Sky, Late Winter, mixed media on canvas. I wonder where this is hanging now? To my mind galleries earn every bit of their commission when you know what a lot of work, expense and planning is involved in doing a big London art fair. The downside, though, is that you don’t know who has bought your work.
The following weekend, 17th-19th March, saw another art fair, the brand-new Talented Art Fair for established artists wanting to sell directly to the public – which addresses my last point. It takes a lot of effort to prepare, make, frame, string and label your work. And then…pack it, transport it, hang it, label it…and try to sell it. It was very enjoyable, though: beautifully organised and well publicised, with a really friendly and helpful team. I chose work with a rather muted palette to hang – my new tree quartet in the middle there.
It was buzzing in Spitalfields with markets in full swing and people out enjoying themselves. Then a bus across Tower Bridge and a walk along the towpath to our air b’n’b, near where Dickens placed Fagin’s hideout, and Bill Sykes supposedly met his end in the Thames ooze.
When I don’t have time to do much else in the studio I nowadays try at least to paint a small something. At the moment I am using offcuts of thin MDF boards, cut to 15x20cm, to use odd bits of mixed-up paint, try out patterns, make some instinctive marks or do pretty well whatever comes to mind. Or, rather, fingers: I try not to think too much and just enjoy myself. Overthinking is the devil!
Coming up soon: three major events in May. Artists’ Open House, for the duration of the Brighton Festival. The Hampstead Affordable Art Fair (with the Nicholas Bowlby Gallery); and the opening of the Nigel Rose Gallery on the Brighton seafront, under th Arches, where I will be having work on regular display. Lots and lots to prepare and to share – but more of that in my next bulletin. In the meantime I’ll leave you with a progress picture of our workshop refurbishment: real progress. It’s so light! Come and see us, and it, in May!