Our latest exhibition is at the Stamford Arts Centre
1st to 18th June 2017
18 members of the artists’ group Artspace Loughborough explore the theme of ‘Odyssey’. Each artist has responded differently and with a variety of media to the theme of a journey.
Several artists have chosen to explore actual journeys: narrow boat journeys in central England, photos from a train in India, the journeys of refugees to a safer life, Australian aboriginal songlines, wallpaper seen in an old cottage in New Zealand, shoes and other objects that remind us of travel.
Some journeys are imagined: the possible aftermath of a shipwreck, the exploits of a travelling circus.
Other work has a more metaphorical quality: the artist’s own journey to develop their art or to find meaning.
I went to Sudbury, Suffolk recently, to see Gainsborough’s house. Very interesting – we devised a slightly alternative version of his life, piecing together the concrete information. I reckon he had quite a stressful working life, going to London early on (the right place for middle-class patrons) – whilst there he would have been obliged to get a posh studio in the right area whether he could afford it or not – posh clients wouldn’t want to be seen in a poor area. Then he went to Bath – maybe that was a bit cheaper, but still posh – we wondered why he moved? Then he returned to Sudbury and we wondered if that meant difficulties, not only in terms of making ends meet, but also he wasn’t entirely in line with Joshua Reynolds, the first principle of the R.A. Looks like his brother (who had made enough money to live elsewhere) moved out and allowed him & family to live in the house their father had originally bought. Looks like Gainsborough felt under pressure to keep up appearances as it were, and we did notice an increase of more ordinary local people in later portraits, so maybe he felt he had to take whatever work he could. What really inspired him though was aristocratic ladies with a bit of va-va-vroom, like ‘Mary, Countess Howe’ – now there was a fabulous woman!
I have been a member of Artspace Loughborough for a decade now having been a member, moving abroad, and come back so I thought it apt to write a few lines about belonging to an art group.
As artists, we tend to work in a fairly solitary manner. However in order to evolve, it is essential we communicate with like-minded people every so often, to support one another and divulge ideas.
One thing which I particularly like about being part of the group, is the diversity of the work of our group members. We often have positive critiquing sessions before we collectively exhibit. These are useful, insightful meetings where we show our work, conceptually, part way through, or finished and talk it through with others.
Skill sharing is another positive feature, which allows us as artists to evolve. We all use a wide variety of media, and can learn and share other skills on a didactic level as well as really useful things like setting up an exhibition (and all the jobs it entails!)
We all share a common interest which is a love of art in all of its’ forms. I highly recommend to anyone who is considering it. Find your tribe and stick to them.
This is a fabulous retrospective of ben Nicholson’s first wife at Djanogly Gallery at Nottingham University. First and foremost she was a terrific colourist, and also as an older person I found her inspirational as she remained so inspired, positive and interested in all things beautiful. Her subjects are often flowers, typically in a jar on a window sill, but then she was left with four children to look after while Ben went off with Barbara Hepworth – so are we surprised her subjects are often home-based? Anyway, I found the colour a real WOW! It’s inspirational, and her flowers are thick gutsy affairs, playing beautifully against the immediate surroundings. There are also her letters (nice friendly open handwriting). This show lifts the spirits – and it’s free.
Our new exhibition, Beyond Words, will be opening at the Sock Gallery, Loughborough Town Hall, on Friday 15th May. The exhibition will run until 27th June, Monday through Saturday, 9am – 5pm; closed Sunday.
You are welcome to meet the artists at the Sock Gallery on Saturday 16th May between 1pm and 3pm.
Just come back from sunny Corwall. Went to 2 great exhibitions. One was at Kestle Barton gallery near Helson. An exhibition of Roger Ackling’s Sun Histories which was exciting and all done using a magnifying glass and the sun to scorch wood. A lovely garden and a cafe with an honesty box if you are thirsty after walking Frenchman’s Creek.
The other was at the Lemon Street Gallery in Truro. Neil Canning. Very much my sort of thing and wonderfully monochrome with great splashes of vivid colour.