Tag Archive: art

Dzintra has been busy at Oswestry Library this month with her butterfly project – and, following on from discussions about the BioBlitz at our last meeting, she has included Old Oswestry Hillfort as a recommended butterfly spotting location!

Next time you’re in the Library, check out her display:



Butterflies and Moths

Hand drawn and hand painted by Dzintra Bernsaida

Through my displays in the library, I like to encourage people to go outside and explore nature.  This time it’s butterflies!

Do you see how colourful they are and how just watching them can cheer you up?  Maybe some of them are in your garden, local park or even our very own Old Oswestry Hillfort.

Just sit quietly and wait to see what will happen. Maybe one of the butterflies will land near you and you can see all their beautiful colours and patterns.  If you can spot some of the butterflies I’ve shown here and say the name to your family and friends you will sound like a cool nature expert!

Dzintra Bernsaida is a Community Artist, a member of the Oswestry Makes team, a member of the Hillfort Creativity group and a good friend to Oswestry library. 

Snow above the Ceiriog

Snow! And plenty of it...

Snow! And plenty of it…

A small group of us – well, two – braved the cold and made our way up to the moors today above Llanarmon D.C. Still a bit grey overhead, with snow clouds low enough to mask the tops of the hills, merging the snow into the sky.

Armed with cameras and sketchpads, we made it as far as the woods at Tyn-y-Coed. Absolutely still, silent and beautiful up there – snow still clinging to the branches overhead, and carved into deep, fluted ridges across the road by the low wind.

Back down to the village to sit by the fire and work up some sketches – a handful of prints now a distinct possibility. Plenty of inspiration up there in the snow!

Mathematical Dreams

John Wragg, Oswestry Heritage Gallery – http://www.johnwragg.net

I’ve always enjoyed Oswestry artist John Wragg‘s work, and it was great to see his recent exhibition in the Oswestry Heritage Gallery.

Vibrant yet controlled, precise yet explosive – John’s geometric paintings are studies in colour as much as they are studies in composition. His twin interests are geometry and light; the end result is a sort of mathematical dream – twistingly precise tesseracts, spirals and hypercubes glimmering with colour.

But his work is more complicated than just strange shapes and bright colours. John also plays around with that 2D/3D boundary that his interest in geometry explores, manifesting itself in a number of 3D mixed media and hanging/kinetic pieces. He’s also clearly interested in the way in which visual interactions with narrative creates a language of representation that thrives on incoherence – meaning born of a fractured and splintered whole.

John Wragg’s studio is underneath mine in the Cambrian Studios Buildings. He exhibited with the Inside Out group at our current work show a few years ago. He exhibits widely, and regularly as part of The Chicken Gallery group on the ground floor of the Cambrian Studios. It’s worth knocking on his door or visiting The Chicken if you’re interested in seeing more of his work.

The Chicken Gallery
of contemporary art and craft

Cambrian Studios Building,
Coney Green, Oswestry
Open: Wed-Sat, 11-3pm

Art Works at Oswestry Chamber

Wednesday evening I gave a quick 15-minute presentation to the Oswestry Chamber of Commerce about ideas that Diana and I have had for promoting art and artists in the business world. From our original “Art Works” ideas for linking art and business together we’ve expanded to cover a range of ways in which these links could build a new business environment for art in Oswestry.

We’ve based these ideas on Inside Out’s experiences working with The Hand, at the Cambrian Buildings, and with Fineline Tattoos. Using these as “case studies”, we’ve come up with a range of broad suggestions for future links and ideas. For anyone who’s interested, there’s a pdf transcript of my presentation here.

The presentation was really well received, and what we do now is to establish lots and lots of dialogue between ourselves, other artists and art groups in Oswestry, and interested businesses. We’d love to talk to anyone in the group – or beyond – who has ideas of their own about business ventures and enterprises, or ways in which art as a business could do – could be – more in Oswestry.

photographic Exhibition

Marches Independent Photography

Marches Independent Photography is holding an exhibition of member’s work. We invite you to come and enjoy this, our fifth exhibition at:-
The Edge Arts Centre, Much Wenlock
From 25th February until 15th April
We are a small informal group of photographers based around Shropshire and the Marches. All of the pictures on show have been selected by the person who produced them and not by a panel of judges. In this way we hope the exhibition reflects our aim of encouraging diversity and innovation alongside the development of classic photographic skills.
We welcome new members and visitors to any of our meetings.
Visit our website to see more of our work and news of meetings: http://www.mipgroup.org.uk

Notebook Meeting Tomorrow!

David Nash at Oriel Mostyn late last year - something to inspire us all!

Just a quick reminder to everyone: our monthly “Notebook Meeting” is tomorrow, 2pm at the Willow Gallery.

Come along for some good art conversation and updates on exhibitions, classes/workshops and projects.

Bring along your sketchbooks or work to share!

Limekiln sketching day

A super day was had by all thanks to Diana’s organization.  As I can’t sketch here is my ‘take’ on the day.

New project: Artists at Work!

Art Works!

We’re launching a new Inside Out project in Oswestry which we want to use to foster collaborative relationshipsw between artists and local businesses.

The project – called “Artists at Work” – aims to create links between the work and practice of local artists and the local business community. The project is designed to evolve to suit the working culture and methods of individual artists and businesses.

What this project will do is bring together artists to produce work inspired by a programme of collaborative, on-site working with a local Oswestry business – a sort of informal artist-in-residence relationship. As the project develops, we will be bringing in local trade and commerce groups in Oswestry.

What kind of work would the project be looking for? That’s totally up to the artists and businesses involved, but some suggestions might be:

  • works which document or record a business’ working practices
  • works which utilise a business’ working methods or materials
  • works which focus on employees, location or tools
  • works which explore patterns of activity, or relationships between customers and staff
  • etc.
We’d hope that artists would engage closely with their collaborating partners, perhaps designing site-specific or interactive pieces. Work in any media, at any scale could be incorporated – again, it depends how the relationship between individual artists and businesses evolves.
We’re giving everyone a few months to think about this project and how they might get involved. We’ll kick-start the project officially on Saturday, July 9th at 10:00am in The Willow Gallery cafe with an informal get-together of any interested artists/business owners.
If you’ve got any questions or observations – go ahead and comment this post. Hope to see you there in July.

Ai Weiwei

Ai Weiwei - currently "detained" by the Chinese authorities.

I’m sure everyone will have seen in the news that the artist Ai Weiwei – under house arrest in China since last October – has been detained by the Chinese authorities, and that fears are growing for his safety. For those of you who might have missed the story, The Guardian has been covering events. Amnesty International as well as leading UK artists like Anthony Gormley are leading the pressure on the Chinese to release the artist as well as other dissident figures.

We’re not used to seeing this happen to artists who have exhibited in the Turbine Hall; given the warmth of the reception afforded his sunflower seeds installation here, and given also that it’s still on display there, it seems particularly shocking to realise that he is regarded as dangerous by his own government.

Arts Cuts

Cuts for the Arts - sculpture by Christopher Locke made from scissors confiscated from airline passengers. via Neatorama.

Not that I wish to be the bearer of depressing news, but today’s the day we all find out how bad the cuts in funding to the Arts are going to be. The Guardian has very good coverage of the results – a good blog and an interactive Google-based map showing where the cuts are falling.

The good news in all of this (if you can call it “good”), is that we failed to get Arts Council funding for Studio A1, which means that we won’t lose our funding! I suppose this really counts as making lemonade out of lemons, but it’s a useful lesson: this is the way arts projects like Studio A1 are increasingly going to have to be funded in the future – through contributions and volunteer time from those who value them.

So, no thanks to the current government, but thanks to all our members who are making Studio A1 possible!

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