Saturday, 28 May 2011

A brief visit last evening to Yorkshire Coast College in Scarborough, to see Steph Mitchell and Carmen Mills's degree shows in particular.  Unfortunately we missed seeing Steph; I think she was at the fashion show while we were looking around.  Steph seemed to have drawn the straw for worst space but she managed to show her work to advantage anyhow.  I particularly liked the small collaged painting she showed and her grid of dark blue paintings were interesting.  Carmen;s work is interesting, linked to geology, archaeology and real time responses.  Both artists seem to be developing in the right direction.

Other work we saw that we were particularly taken with was the fab crochet work by Diann Atkin; a really joyful response to what can at times be a misogynist society, and Jean Harlow's meticulous digital drawings and prints, although I was slightly alarmed that the presentation of the fascinating works presented in a block or grid looked a bit like a splash back for an Aga!   Congratulations to all the artists and best wishes for their futures.

I am not sure how long the show runs for, it is usually at least a week but a word of advice:  make sure your catalogue has the dates, times of opening and the venue address, as it helps people like us who are relatively new to the area to find the show!  We had fun, and I particularly enjoyed the Yorkshire Mixture sweets after which the show was named, very aptly, I thought. 

Tonight is the opening of Debbie Loane's show and we will be going over to Ryedale Folk Museum early to make final checks and take photo's before the public arrive.  We are hoping for a really good response.

Friday, 27 May 2011

I worked with artist Debbie Loane in the Gallery at Ryedale Folk Museum all day yesterday to finish hanging her show, February to May, which is a wonderful body of work and looks stunning in the space.  We both graduated in the same year, and reminisced about such things as going to Atlantis in Brick Lane to see the stupendous Hughie O'Donoghue show in the '80's.  I am hoping that we have a good turn out for the private view on Saturday evening, it would be great if she sold some!  There has been a lot of interest from visitors and volunteers at the museum while we were hanging the show; people kept sneaking in for a look and being very complimentary.  It has been a real pleasure to work with Debbie.

Last Saturday I was at Duckett and Jeffreys gallery in Malton for Jacob de Graaf and Ian Mitchell's show, paint, print and place, which is good.  I prefer paintings with a bit of gesture and energy about them, yet Jacob's had a strangely calm and unsettling air about them that was intrigueing.  Ian's prints of motorway bridges sans any hint of human activity were also slightly unnerving;  their abstract quality, a result of Ian's reducing the subject down to their essential structure and his colour selection made for some really strong work.  I was slightly alarmed when he told me that he is in the habit of balancing his camera on the dashboard of his car and taking photo's as he drives, made me laugh!  I liked these prints a lot and think they are an interesting development for Ian. I have often thought that motorways, their bridges and embankments are interesting subject matter and there Ian is, with his fab prints.