Visiting family in the UK this weekend and I got the chance to visit 4 art exhibitions being held in the Royal West of England Academy in one day!
The first was the annual show of work produced by the Clifton Arts Club and covered digital photography (one entry) through mixed media, fabric and more traditional offerings in watercolour and oils. Apart from 3 beautifully engraved crystal glass bowls these pieces most impressed me. The first called “path to the sea” is a mixed media piece including words, beads and shells on a background of – wait for it – knitted plastic bags!
The second was a fabric triptych called “shoreline triptych”; I love the muted sea-toned colours in this one although I am not sure I like the knitted edge.
I also thought this jug/vase was rather fun.
“Flown away” is a fused glass panel.
and finally, this beautiful picture of Clifton Suspension bridge in winter
The next exhibition was entitled “Four” and consisted of work by 4 ladies from the West Country although I only liked the work of two of them:
Margaret Collet produces prints of birds and animals experimenting with printing over other printed material such as old book pages, old bank notes, old music and old maps. This one is called “rook attack”.
This one is called “transparency-obstacle”
Gloria Armstrong makes these Byzantium-inspired fabric creations – sacred vessels, libation vessels and temple vessels
and reliquaries to the moon,
and a reliquary to love
a reliquary to the Hesperidae
This piece is called “Mysterium”
They were all absolutely beautiful – rich fabrics with intricate gold thread embroidery, beads, sequins and charms. If I had my stash of beads, etc. anywhere near to hand I would have been tempted to dash off and try my hand at one of these.
Next stop was an exhibition entitled “Near and Far” – as an avid traveller myself I thought this sounded really promising but, alas, I was sadly disappointed. Most of the pictures seemed to lack the colour I always manage to find and were drab in the extreme. Glimpses into some of the artists’ notebooks were much more pleasing and the best exhibit was an installation of a suitcase containing an itemised list for Customs, a small book in a box with pages each decorated with a postage stamp of a bird and a painting of a bird (not necessarily the one featured on the stamp but in similar colours) and a length of handmade aper with pen and ink drawings accompanied by notes. The paper was attached to a length of wooden dowelling at each end so that it could be rolled up. The suitcase, like a cabinet of curiosities, contained porcupine quills in lieu of chopsticks, a travelling game, pens and brushes etc.
The final offering was a series of pen and ink drawings(?) by the famous artist David Hockney to illustrate 6 of the fairy tales written by the Grimm brothers. Not being a fan of DH what can I say except that the pictures were grim :-).