Drawing upon Drawing

Drawings, Galleries, Workshops

So much has been happening of late that I haven’t had time to finish a blog entry. I was thinking of merging them into one but will try to be focused and get it done in two.

The sculptor has had various interesting meetings recently which included a workshop for the first time which went well. It was focused on his exhibition and for the participants to create a sculpture but he wanted the group to focus on drawing their idea first. A large collection of work went in a restaurant in the middle of Bradford city centre, and that followed with a radio interview for BBC Radio Leeds. (Sound bite will only last for the night 3 days and he is speaking at roughly 40.43).

The sculptor talking about ‘drawing’ at the responses to art workshop

The sculptor talking about ‘drawing’ at the responses to art workshop

We all went for ‘The Big Draw’ at Cartwright Hall during half term and had well over 100 people draw on huge paper which we intended to wrap around the building but it was too windy on the day when we wee finishing. It was really interesting to see patterns in drawing.

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Four year olds drawing of people, The BIg Draw 29th October

Lots of 4-year-old drawing circles, dots and lines to represent bodies. Parents drawing houses, some finding inspiration from their family. A grandparent sat for a good while some fantastic shading in of a beautiful snail his granddaughter had drawn. A young boy drew his fish tank with amazing detail and a family came in to warm up from the park and covered their paper in ducks and birds and visions inspired by Lister Park. Upstairs in the gallery Tim Curits , another local artist who does lots of drawing in his own practise, they were looking at a college and self portraits and making pictures of themselves with newspaper. Drawing upon a lovely collection of Hockney’s drawings and college work.  Our eldest, feeling comfortable to roam the gallery by himself went to see what was happening in Tim’s workshop and usually keen to do anything creative declined out of loyalty to Baba downstairs. It was the first time for my husband to do this community art workshop event. We had thought that we would ask family to look at each other and draw each other , perhaps looking at the style of my husband’s sculpture. However, when its a drop in and the numbers fluctuate with busier times and quieter times it was just good to see people sitting and drawing and not being too prescriptive.

The gallery was a hive of activity and what was also interesting was seeing on one wall in the Hockney exhibition, all the drawings were hung at child’s eye level and there were little drawings of Hockney to find around the exhibition. So with the Big Draw event, Julia Donaldson exhibition and curators hanging work directly for children there is no better place or time to introduce children to the wold of museums and galleries so I totally agree with Jake Chapman and his quite ridiculous statement about children and galleries.

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Our eldest’s drawing at The bIg draw event at Cartwright

Children aren’t suddenly going to want to go to an art gallery at 18 if they have been ousted in infancy. Art and drawing is already squeezed out of the main stream too much. Drawing is such an important and valuable skill and something we forget to continue to do as we grow older. With my husband and eldest constantly drawing it is something that happens in our house naturally but something I personally don’t take time to do. After such a busy half term the house is in a state where I have drawers to wash, draws to put things away into, we have been rushing around so much and leaving a mess.

I noticed this morning a sudden drop in temperature, the skyline grey and wintry. Like shades of  newly sharpened pencils crisp and fresh. Time to sit down, wrap up and draw.

 

 

Family Tree

Exhibitions, Relationships, Soul searching

family tree

The Family has been a subject of exploration in recent sculptures, with two different styles, one in ‘the beginning’ collection and this one in the ‘Souls’ collection.

It represents the idea that within the family we can have a full spectrum of personalities and characters. The family is a microcosm of the community and the globe. If we could live in harmony and peace with our loved ones, be accepting of our differences and celebrate them but realise and honour our similarities we would understand the same principles that bond and unite us as the human race. So much of the world looks at the dark side, to the negative, the qualities which separate us. It casts a shadow.

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My son once asked me which was the most important part of a tree. I think I quickly answered off the cuff the seeds but at 6 years old he said “No Mama” it’s the roots. Such is the wisdom of children. We need to build and strengthen our ties. Focus on the roots and the branches will flourish. We can stand tall and proud supporting each other.

family tree 2

‘Souls’ is opening this evening in Blackpool from 6pm and the exhibition runs for 4 weeks. Venn Projects, FYC Gallery  (Open Mon, Wed, Fri 10am-4pm. Please contact the gallery direct on 01253 477147, if travelling distances, to ensure it is open to the public)

The Family

Colour, Connections, Relationships, Steel
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‘The Family’

This piece is the third in the series ‘Beginnings’ and entitled ‘The Family’ included as the start of community, the point from which generations follow. The beginnings of so many events, feelings, memories, a microcosm of the world.

In recent days I have felt for those families affected by the missing plane in Malaysia. The impact on relatives of those sentenced in Egypt. The families suffering in Syria. When a catastrophe hits an individual it has repercussions on the whole family.

This piece depicts the connection between Father, Mother, Child. The precarious nature of this is visual and from one angle we see Mother and Child with only the thin line of ‘Father’ and from the other angle ‘The Father’ is dominant. The idea that genetic character traits we inherit from our parents and grandparents in some fashion shape who we are.

'The Family' (Mother and Child)

‘The Family’ (Mother and Child)

The Family is a complex and intricate balance. As a unit it encompasses all the emotions we can feel. Individual families can be so different and  diametrically so similar.  Within our own family unit, the fact that we are mixed culture makes this very interesting to experience and learn from, both shared and different values and traditions. For a while I thought this was unique but actually with  increased discussions with families even where both parents are from the same country a difference in backgrounds and upbringing can create stumbling blocks and need for comprises when children become that shared responsibility.

For me the colour in this piece also has some meaning, the connection between the Mother’s head as yellow and the child as yellow displaying the way a mother’s mind is preoccupied with her child but also the vision of hope for the future, for the next generation. The peaceful white body of the mother connected to the father with ‘red’ for passion, love, heat, anger, attention, warmth, protection. The symbolism of this simplistically and elegantly piece shows all this as it portrays the ‘family unit’

'The Family'

‘The Family’

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The Family’

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‘The Family Unit’