Tuesday, 25 December 2012

Winter Solstice in Brilliant Sunshine at Avebury

The weather forecast for last Friday, the shortest day of the year, was excellent, so a walk from Swindon to Avebury seemed like a good idea. I didn't beat the last time of 3 hours 20 minutes, but had a good time trying to do so.

One of the many clumps of trees on the Ridgeway known as 'hedgehogs'.
 Looking back along the Ridgeway, glorious blue sky and sunshine
Starlings use this tree to flock around, it's on the farm track almost in Avebury.
 Once in Avebury, the sunshine was still as bright, the place was packed with people.
And here is one of the stones.

Tuesday, 18 December 2012

Jane’s Trip to France to stay at Le Grande Barbe, a great place for Landscape Painting

Following her trip to Madrid last Spring, Jane Milner—Barry set off to France in September and she has belatedly sent me some photos.
  Jane signed up for a landscape painting course in remotest south—west France, where Jamie and Suzie Peters have been running landscape painting holidays in their lovely converted farmhouse, Le Grand Barbe, for many years.
Here’s Jane’s painting of the farmhouse.

And a palm tree in the garden.

Here’s resident cat Alphonse with the garden in the background. 

Here’s the beautiful front door with junior dog Binkie.

Here's the view from over the road. Most days you can see the Pyrenees in the distance, with snow on the mountain tops.
Here are some beehives in a nearby wood. There are also wild boar in the woods, and Jane saw a family of them crossing a field.
Here's a deserted barn, just down the road.
Jane says this is a brilliant place to stay and to paint. 
 For information about courses in 2013 see Jamie’s website, www.gasconypainting.com. As well as landscape courses, Jamie and Suzie offer the option of staying on a bed and breakfast basis (outside course dates) and keeping your painting stuff in the studio.

Thursday, 13 December 2012

Eric Ravilious Cards and a Book from the Wet Paint Gallery

I am so pleased with the cards I bought at the current Wet Paint Gallery Exhibition - Bawden, Gill and Ravilious, I am going to frame them.
I thought I'd share them with you first:
 The one above is 'Furlongs', a watercolour painted in 1934.
 This one is 'Tea at Furlongs', a watercolour painted in 1939.
 This one above is 'The Waterwheel', a watercolour painted unsure when.
I left the card in it's Cellophane wrapper and it says 'Wedgewood Museum' at the top. This is entitled 'Garden Implements' and was a pattern used by Wedgewood on their pottery. Last week, the Wet Paint Gallery had some of the pottery for sale.
I also bought my second Eric Ravilious book, a gem- 'The England of Eric Ravilious' by Freda Constable with Sue Simon:
That's what the cover looks like, it's well worth buying for it's background to Eric Ravilious and the Plates which fill more than half the book.
The exhibition runs at the Wet Paint Gallery until the 22nd of December:

Wednesday, 12 December 2012

Artsite's The Window Gallery Display and Number 9 Gallery Party

Swindon Open Studios and Artsite have worked together to create a Window Gallery display with a Christmas present theme, ie. inexpensive items.
We decided to hold a party last Friday 7th of December to advertise this, and also invited artists to bring things to make a gallery out of the former shop space now known as the number 9 Gallery.
Gordon Dickinson kindly supplied a special stick for the window and took some fabulous photos. www.pavenhillsculptures.com
I'll try and provide a link to all the photos, in the meantime, here is a selection of the photos:
 Above Theatre Square at night with Gordon's butterflies looking great.
And below, the party in full swing.
The Window Gallery is best viewed by going into it as those above are doing.

A part of what's in the Window Gallery, Tim's angels, Gordon's stick and Jane's local views. timcarroll.co.uk       www.janemilner-barry.co.uk

Some of Tim Carroll's ceramics.

And the fun bit, talking to others:
Thank you once again to all those who made the evening so special.
The shop and Window Gallery will be open on Saturday 15th of December from 9.30am - 5pm or email: swindonopenstudios@hotmail.co.uk or ring 01793 527149

Sunday, 9 December 2012

Wonderful Exhibition at the Wet Paint Gallery- Eric Ravilious, Eric Gill and Edward Bawden.

The latest exhibition at the Wet Paint Gallery in Cirencester is fabulous.
There are Eric Gill prints, some glorious limited edition Giclee prints of work by Eric Ravilious and some beautiful prints by Edward Bawden and some of Eric Ravilious' ceramics.
There are also some very fine pieces by local artists.
Do go and have a look.
Details of where it is can be found on the website, it's very easy to get to from the A419 and has a car park right beside the gallery:
Here are some of the photographs of the exhibition:
 Above the poster with a bit of reflection, and below the gallery as seen from the entrance:
Four photographs of work by Eric Ravilious:
 The print on the wall is 'Furlongs', it's stunning.
 Above is 'Wet Afternoon'
 Two smaller prints above and below a cabinet with Wedgewood ceramics with designs by Eric Ravilious. While I was in the gallery, a couple bought two of these pieces.
There is a wide selection of prints by Eric Gill:

And Edward Bawden below:
The gallery also has ceramics and linocuts by other artists, notably Anita Klein:
And another person:
And a rather lovely glass fish:
The exhibition runs until the 22nd of December and is well worth a visit.

Thursday, 6 December 2012

Laura Copping's Exhibition at the Landing Arts Gallery

The Landing Arts Gallery at Swindon's Arts Centre on Devizes Road is proving to be a hugely successful venue for artists.
Jaime Bullock, who manages the gallery, has booked artists until April 2014 and has now stopped taking bookings. She is very pleased with the success of the gallery, and the positive responses she has received about it.

For the months of December and January 2012/13, Laura Copping's work is on display for the first time in several years. This very popular artist is displaying some very bold and colourful pieces, do have a look when you're passing, weekdays 10am-5pm and Saturdays 10am-1pm.

I don't want to spoil the experience, but here's a flavour of the work:
Above is a photograph of the wall, and just out of view is Jaime being quizzed about prices, sizes and how to buy one of Laura's paintings.

A closer look at 3 paintings giving an idea of the richness of the colours Laura uses.
Above a tree with a changing background depending on the light falling on it, and below some glorious butterflies.

To find out more about the Arts Centre: www.swindon.gov.uk/artscentre , there is a link to the Landing Arts Gallery on there.

Saturday, 1 December 2012

Christmas Window Gallery now Assembled

Artsite and Swindon Open Studios members have contributed items which would make fabulous Christmas presents to the Window Gallery in the former Merlin Gallery, now known as the Number 9 Gallery, Theatre Square, SN1 1QN.
Items may be bought by emailing swindonopenstudios@hotmail.co.uk or coming along to the Christmas party next Friday the 7th of December from 7.30pm onwards.
The shop may also be open on the 8th of December from 11am-4pm.
The whole Theatre Square area was buzzing with activity last night and looks great with the fairy lights draped round the tree:
 Not a good photo, but you can see the general festive feel generated by the lights.
 Here's Tim putting things up in the window.
 And above the finished display.
Below in the display cabinet are some of Gavin Salisbury's surreal miniatures, www.gavin-salisbury.com and Pat Elmore's small animals and carved soapstone. www.patelmore.co.uk
Carmen B.Norris was kind enough to bring 3 pieces and send me photos of them, so here they are:
 Above is 'Evolving', acrylic painted on wood priced at £25
 The clever squares are entitled 'Harmony' at £40

And this is 'Transformation', pencil on paper and is £30.
More on Carmen; carmenbnorris.com