Saturday, 30 January 2010


The Thoresby Gallery have been in touch with a request for some work for their Snowdrop exhibition.  A little hesitant at first, a seed of an idea planted itself in my mind's eye and I felt confident that I could create a snowdrop in my own visual language.  I've been watching the slow and gentle changes in our garden, snowdrops peeking out of their tight leaf coats, the last leaves of Autumn resolutely staying put.  I've also been hibernating, watching it all from the warmth of my home, the background to our indoor life.

I looked at the work of some of my favourite artists, Winifred Nicholson, Reg Cartwright, Elaine Pamphilon.  I really like the strong sense of shape in the work of Reg Cartwright, the compositions of Elaine Pamphilon.....and use of text, and the beautiful, spiritual light in Winifred Nicholson's work.

Cloud Cup and Daisies by Elaine Pamphilon
My favourite jugs and a still life.
I love this collage byPicasso.

After the ink drawing I collaged in the shapes.  The colours for the piece came from the Midwinter plate that you can see at the side of the sewing machine.  It belonged to my Dad.

Choosing threads to stitch with.

Sewing on my beloved Elna.

The finished piece.  One Leaf Left.

Monday, 25 January 2010

Star City





Hooray for Nottingham!  We now have our very own contemporary art space and it's beautiful!  Any one who has arrived at Nottingham by train or bus will know that the city sweeps up the hill away from them with the buildings looking as though they are piled one upon the other like children's wooden blocks.  Amongst the red brick and stone buildings there now nestles a block of gold, shimmering like the elusive gold ticket in Charlie and the Chocolate factory!  Nottingham Contemporary nestles into the hill, and beautifully juxtaposes the Unitarian church (now a bar).  In honour of the city's textile heritage, the roof is embossed with lace motifs.  The gallery feels fresh and relevant and has lifted the city art scene from feeling somewhat provincial to feeling fresh and alluring. 

I saw the David Hockney exhibition and loved the stunningly crafted etchings.  I'm looking forward to the next exhibition, Star City, which starts on February 12th.  The Broadway cinema is matching the communist theme with its own film season and later in the month I'll be hosting my book group on Estonian Independence Day, so a thoroughly eastern block February!


The January blues have been chased away by the news that I sold some work at the Thoresby gallery.  Two pieces, Sunrise and Evening sold in the run up to Christmas.  So I have some renewed energy for my work.  This week I've been working on three pieces for the Open Exhibition at The Beetroot Tree.

Despite the snow

Red Sky at Night


I've also been working on a new range of cards to supply to galleries.  I've been making my own rubber stamps and I'm pleased with the results.  More supplies are arriving this week so I'll be ready to go into full-scale production on the dinner table.

Monday, 4 January 2010

Happy New Year!


December disappeared in a haze of sleepless nights, obligations and not enough light to my retinas!  Interspersed with that were the high points of mittens and stockings and open fires.  We spent New Year in Norfolk in a landscape iced with daily sprinklings of snow and I've returned feeling whole and reconnected to myself.

Whilst away, we visited the new premises of  St.Judes gallery, where I picked up one of these maps by Mark Hearld.  The new gallery is smaller than their previous space in Aylsham but still lovely with a mid 20th century aesthetic that is modernist in that quiet, British, domestic sense.  I wish I had seen their exhibition of the work of Peter Green.  I like the strong sense of shape and abstraction from nature and would like to develop my tapestry in that direction.

My enthusiasm for British domestic modernism has been fuelled by being given a beautiful book on the Bloomsbury group.  I'd love to visit Charleston, the home of Vanessa Bell and Duncan Grant.  This joins the list of New Year plans and resolutions.  Top of the list is to battle on trying to validate creativity and make time to be creative.
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