Tuesday, 27 August 2013

Copy of the Brochure and a reminder of the dates- 7th/8th and 14th/15th of September

My shiny, new, purple HP computer's hard drive has already stopped working and needs replacing, but probably the scanned images of the brochure are the most appropriate, so will include those.

The important dates are: Friday 6th of September Launch Party of SOS and opening night of the Artsite member's exhibition at Artsite 7.30pm onwards. Everyone is welcome, there will be refreshments and lots of people I hope.

Then open studios weekends are 7th and 8th of September and the 14th and 15th of September, from 11am until 5pm.

Details of who is open and when, can be found in the brochure, a copy of which is in the Window Gallery, and on the website

And scanned copies of the brochure appear below:





Monday, 26 August 2013

Window Gallery Exhibition Hung in the Number 9 Gallery

Another excellent job done by Tim Carroll, the Window Gallery exhibition featuring work by Carmen B Norris. Maggie Harris, Ken White, Sophie Corrigan, Jo Clavier, Pat Elmore, JRichard Naylor, Rachel Pryor, Tim Carroll, Ingrid Rylance, Louis Cutting, Richard Naylor, Valerie Baylies and Jane Milner-Barry is now hung in readiness for Open Studios weekends.
Lucy Foakes has delivered some work tonight, that will be added when I return.

Computer problems with my 4 month old lap top 'repairing disk errors', prevent me showing more than one photograph:
I'm really pleased, it's a great advertisement for Swindon Open Studios 2013, thank you to all contributors.
The brochure is now available on the SOS website

Sunday, 25 August 2013

The Window Gallery Exhibition Pieces, Paintings, Angels and small Artefacts for the Art Machine

The work has been gathered together and labels will be typed up tonight ready for part one of Swindon Open Studios 2013, the Window Gallery Exhibition in Theatre Square, opposite the Post Modern.
It's all in the house at the moment, along with paintings stacked up in front of the new Hampton Garden bench, still in its box because it's too difficult to move the paintings.There are lovely clay angels and birds on bowers and much more for the art machine, all ready for our open studios weekends.
The Window Gallery pile:
 The pile of paintings:
The Art machine ready to be filled:
And some of the clay pieces drying:
Some fridge magnet guitars and an example of a small painting which will be found in some of the art machine boxes for £1 :
 And what will these be? Come to studio 16 at 52, St.Margaret's Road to find out on the 7th/8th and 15th of September between 11am-5pm




Rudbeckia Cherry Brandy - it's magnificent.

 Rudbeckias are brilliant flowers to have in the garden, particularly at this time of year, and the variety Cherry Brandy looked fabulous when I saw it last year in a garden. I was given a packet of seeds in March by a friend, and after a very slow start, finally raised about 8 plants. I gave a few away, and have 4 remaining plants in the garden, just starting to flower.
Are they magnificent? yes I think so, but one recipient of a small plant who has been eagerly awaiting the flowering of her plant, seemed a bit disappointed by the colour.
Here are two photos of it:

And while out with the camera this morning, I also took photos of some self seeded Rudbeckias:

One even growing between the paving slabs:

And lastly the wonderful Tagetes Great Dixter:





Tuesday, 20 August 2013

The Swindon Massive - Private View 27th August 6.30pm

On the 27th of August from 6.30pm onwards, get yourselves along to have a look at this exciting exhibition in Bath. I hope someone can take some photographs of the exhibition because I can't go, will be on holiday!!


































I've also seen this poster:

Hidcote Manor and Kiftsgate Court Visit

If you like gardens, these two are well worth a visit, it's especially good to visit them the same day. They can't be compared, they are very different, both fabulous, and so conveniently close together. It's well worth checking opening times for Kiftsgate a house in private ownership, and not open every day like Hidcote.
At Hidcote, there were orange, 'hot' borders, but the top flowers were to be found on Hydrangea aspera Villosa, just look at the colours and form of the flowers:


There were reds:

 Glorious Dahlias:
And on to Kiftsgate where the beauty of the house, terraces and massive planters were breathtaking:






And finally a bright yellow plant with dark leaves among the fairly pinky purple hues. I wonder what it's called?

Colours in the Garden

Having just read Dan Pearson's page in the Observer last Sunday The future's orange where he set out to brighten up his garden by planting lots of orange flowered plants, I was impressed by his approach, we all have reasons for using the plants we do. I tend to haphazardly use plants I like ending up with a bit of a clash of colours, although maybe flower colours can sit side by side without jarring too much.
Each season has a dominant colour, and I think this end of summer time has a large number of ornage and yellow flowered plants.
I went to test this in my garden, having been influenced last autumn by a garden tour of the area around Great Dixter, I found quite a few oranges including Tagetes 'Cinnabar' mentioned by Dan:
 And a lovely orangy red dahlia with dark red leaves:
This glorious annual Rudbeckia which was self sown and came from home made compost:
And I knew it was a good idea to buy Rudbeckia fulgida last year, it's looking wonderful:
On the other hand, there are also the most amazingly deep blue Ipomoeas near an arch and growing over a lovely structure bought from the Kingston Bagpuize  Rare Plant fair this summer:

 The flowers are only open until mid day, hence the name Morning Glory, and each one only opens once, so it's fun to see how many are open each morning,


Saturday, 17 August 2013

A Taster of Ken White's and Andrew Tucker's Gardens and Studios in the Mall

With three weeks to go until Swindon Open Studios 2013, it's hard not to get over excited.
I would like to publicise Ken and Andrew's Open Studios, they are open on the second weekend only, the 14th and 15th of September, so it's important to check opening times of studios beforehand by looking at the brochure or website.
I visited them recently to highlight the wonderful gardens on show during Open Studios, and couldn't resist one of Ken in his studio:

 And another of the other side of his studio:
 And the restful, well thought out garden:
 And on to Andrew Tucker's garden with arrangements of pots, with trellis work made by Andrew in the background, place an order when you visit if you would like one:
 A verdant sitting area with some of Andrew's fencing in the background:
 And look at this clipping and super veg.:
 The wood stores are literally works of art, both the structres and the stacking:
 And here's the newly installed arbour at Tom Carroll's garden on a very bright, sunny day:
 Below including this is self indulgence on my part, doesn't it look good?:

Wednesday, 14 August 2013

Party Party Party at the Launch of SOS 2013 on the 6th of September from 7.30pm onwards

Invite your friends and come and join us to launch Swindon Open Studios at the Post Modern, Artsite, Theatre Square, SN1 1QN

Please copy and paste the invitation which features the iconic Tom Dixon light sculpture on Tim Carroll's Town Centre painting:


Tuesday, 13 August 2013

Visits to Derek Gale and Pat Elmore to Deliver Brochures - Their Delightful Studios are a Must for Visitors to Open Studios

Derek Gale lives at 7, Eagle Lane in Watchfield, I visited him to deliver brochures, and would encourage visitors to Open Studios to go to Watchfield on the way to Longcot.
Watchfield can be reached by turning right off the A420, driving through Shrivenham and turning left into Watchfield High Street, Eagle Lane is about half a mile down the High Street on the left, with the wonderful looking Eagle Pub signed from the High Street.
Alternatively and more safely, drive on further to the next roundabout and take the third turning to Watchfield, High Street is now on your right.Parking on the High Street is essential, not on Eagle Lane because it's very small. Derek's website
The number 66 bus will drop you at the road end.
Here's a photo of Derek's studios at the entrance to the garden:

In addition to visiting Derek's garden studio and enjoying his fine art photography, there's  his garden to enjoy, and possibly cakes:
 A shrubby start, and then it opens out, and there's a natural looking pond at the bottom of the garden
 Here's the pond:

And the Eagle pub:
 And the interesting looking village shop.
From Watchfield, it's a short distance to Longcot and Pat Elmore's studios, workshops and gardens.
Pat's website
 Here's a taste of what you will see when visiting Pat, above the outside of her house, and below one of her sculptures:
 Below a work in progress:
 The workshop:
 Below part of the garden with various sculptures:

 Above the torso inspired by one of Pat's daughters, and below some beans looking so good.
There are more sculptures a mile down the road in Sharon Rich's garden where the best views of the Uffington White horse are to be had, and there are free range hens and eggs for sale.

And the King and Queen pub at Longcot is under new management and apparently very good.