Tag Archive: Glyndwr University


Sketching day at Llanymynech - panel from Limescapes comic (2012)

Sketching day at Llanymynech – panel from Limescapes comic (2012)

Had a great sketching day at Llanymynech Rocks on Sunday.  About ten of us met up at the quarry carpark and braved the chill for a morning and afternoon of exploring, photographing, painting and drawing. We were met there by Steve Evison from Underhill Farm, where we stopped for lunch and a welcome cup of tea. Actually, it wasn’t nearly as cold as I expected it to be, and as the day wore on, it was actually quite warm in the sunshine. After lunch, Steve took a group of us on a tour of the older limekilns underneath the brow of the quarries, and then up to the toposcope for a view out over the canal, the railway line and the long oval of the Hoffman Kiln across the other side of the B-road.

This was not our first visit either to Underhill Farm or to the “limescapes” in Llanymynech, but it confirmed it as a place rich in creative possibilities. A number of us are now starting works that focus on the quarry, the limekilns and the wider natural and heritage landscapes that surround the quarry. Dorothy was muttering enthusiastically about centring at least part of her MA work on the quarry, Al was interested in also directing some of his course work towards the area, and I know Gill has also been working on a series of paintings set up in the quarries. I’ve also now started work on two graphic novel projects – one which Steve and I have talked about previously, about the heritage and environment of the quarries and the limekilns, bringing a number of different aspects – industrial history, archaeology, geology, social and community history and leisure – together; the second a more explorative graphic work which uses the quarry as its geographical focus.

With all this interest in the quarries and the kilns, I’m glad we’ve got a good working relationship with Underhill Farm. Both Steve and Irene are keen to have us Inside Out artists make the most of the place, and would welcome individuals or small groups back to use the farm as a base for working and sketching days. I know a number of us will be returning individually through the winter, making headway with our individual projects – but if anyone is interested in another sketching day out at the quarry, just say so!

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If Music be the Food of Artists…?

Play it again, Samantha…

Had a really interesting discussion yesterday morning up at Glyndwr about music and art – or more specifically, about music and artists.

How many of us listen to music while we work? How important is it what kind of music we listen to? Does different kind of music inspire us to work in particular ways? How do we listen to our music – out loud, on headphones, via the radio? Do we listen to music when we work that we don’t listen to at any other time? Do we feel that music shapes our work? What about viewing art while listening to music? How does that shape our understanding of and appreciation of what we’re looking at? What about music and art? How many of us include music or sound as an integral part of our work? What difference might it make if we don’t… but did? What about “suggested playlists” for viewing our work? Book authors sometimes make suggestions for playlists, and musicians sometimes suggest reading lists – but I’m not aware of visual artists making similar connections.

Anyway, fascinating discussion – no conclusions reached, but plenty of ideas generated. I can feel a playlist coming on…

Young Artists Stage First Major Exhibition

Good headline!

There’s nothing like a good write-up in the local press! Hannah Phillips and Becky Roberts, who are exhibiting as featured artists down in Studio A1 at the moment, had an excellent article written about them in the Shropshire Star under the above headline.

Click the picture [left] to read the full article.

Their exhibition looks excellent – some really nice texture pieces and that great bluebell featured in the Shropshire Star photo. We’ve had a lot of people in so far, and quite a number of members of the public, too.

Congrats to Becky and Hannah – come down and see their work for yourself this coming Saturday.

Well Grounded

Advertiser, Feb 22 - click for larger view

Good pic and write-up on Anne’s exhibition in this week’s Advertiser!

Well Grounded: Artist Elizabeth Spence is currently exhibiting at “Inside Out” Studio in Coney Green. The artist’s inspiration comes from her interest in archaeology and geology and she has been using mixed media including natural and organic materials along with oils in her representations of the natural world.

Hannah Phillips & Becky Roberts at Studio A1

Stripes #2, Rebecca Crowell - no, not on exhibition at Studio A1, but a major influence for featured artist Becky Roberts.

Glyndwr students Hannah Phillips and Becky Roberts are our next featured artists at Studio A1. They’re hanging tomorrow, and will open their show on Wednesday. Here’s a taster for what they’ve got in store in the form of their artists’ statements:

Hannah Phillips

I focus on nature’s organic objects and processes to create my work. The beauty of nature has always interested me and I tend to explore this through different techniques and media.  No matter where my creativity takes me, this theme will continue to inspire me throughout my art practice.

My earlier work is based on organic objects, concentrating on using acrylic paint in order to expose their flowing lines and shapes which I am very interested in. I enjoy exploring the form of the object and how the addition of colour adds to this.
In my recent practice I worked with Richard Spence on advertising, and I have also worked collaboratively with Rebecca Roberts where the end result was a sculpture created from rusted metal. This was a turning point in my own work, as the combination of Rebecca’s work on rust and my work on nature led me to explore the beauty which an item of decay can induce. I enjoyed working collaboratively as it has an element of unpredictability, which is refreshing in comparison to working independently. I became more interested in how texture can bring a new dimension to a piece of work when used in an abstract form, rather than concentrating on the image.

I went on to explore the concept of beauty in decay though different media. Using various substances to create texture leads me to discover how vibrant paint merges, blends and interacts with the surface. This has been a key process in my work. Photographs of deteriorating organic objects recently spurred me to move into the medium of print in order to focus on the beautiful forms and lines which decay initiates. I found that the addition of water colour to this otherwise black and white technique prompted me to explore how a process which is commonly thought of as detrimental, can indeed be elegant.

My practice uses different media and techniques to show that things are not as they seem, in an effort to challenge the perception of the viewers.

Becky Roberts

I am a local art student from Wrexham, currently studying my second year of Fine Art at Glyndwr University.
My work consists of a wide variety of styles and techniques. This current exhibition focuses on a more abstract approach compared to my previous work.  These compositions are textural giving attention to colour, tone and layering. I was drawn to the rustic aspect of found rusted objects, using these as a starting point I aimed to re-crate this effect in paint reflecting the colour and textures of the pieces I found. I then moved onto other media’s including print and sculpture. My work developed from using different surfaces to varied materials

I went from painting to sculpture in a collaborative piece made alongside Hannah Philips. Hannah’s theme was ‘Beauty and Decay’ which included the study of flowers which was an opposite of my rusted metal theme. Despite this I believe the contradiction of nature and manmade items worked. The sculpture was made using orange rusty metal which was found; this again was a contrasting colour to the bluebell we chose to base our sculpture on. I found working both collaboratively and independently beneficial and enjoyable as there are different qualities in both approaches. Working independently allows more control however; I find lack of control in collaborative work results in interesting compositions as different ideas collide.

Rebecca Crowell, a Canadian painter was a main influence in my work; Crowell’s paintings are also based on found materials such as driftwood and stones. She chooses her colour pallet based on objects she finds or even elements such as sky or water. I also incorporated the colours of my found pieces into my abstract paintings as well as the textures of them. Another aspect of Rebecca Crowell’s work I found interesting, was how she composed her pieces. She selected different panels which she had painted and arranged them together and when happy with the outcome she fixed them together as one individual painting. I liked this idea as it made compositions changeable. The idea of combining different painted surfaces to create one piece appealed to me, therefore I pursued this.

Anne Spence – final day

Men An Tol, Cornwall - Neolithic holed stone and two uprights

It’s the last day of Anne Spence’s exhibition at Studio A1. She’s put on a really good exhibition, with lots of really interesting and thoughtful pieces. As Anne takes down her exhibit later this afternoon, I thought I’d summarise her show by puting up an extract from her artist’s statement on the blog:

… The inspiration for this body of work came from my interest in archaeology and geology. I am currently exploring different organic mixed media works within my art. The reason I am using earthly, natural and organic minerals is that it relates to the unique megalithic structure Man an Tol, Cornwall, which is, for me, an inspirational site. Our Stone Age ancestors built this and they too would have used the same natural minerals of the earth for their cave drawings, but I have used these combined with oil paint within my contemporary abstract interpretation. I want to show how our Neolithic ancestors worshipped the sun and the moon through their megalithic structures. Highlighting how in our modern times we have lost these beliefs in our natural world, showing how such phenomena as eclipses of the sun and moon still leave us in awe, as it would have done for our ancestors. I want to display and bring awareness to the viewer, that in our modern day life we have not lost our inner feelings of our senses, but still have them, as did our ancestors, even though we are living in such a virtual world of the information era. I want to portray a sense of depth within my work that pulls the viewer into my world.


Anne Spence at Studio A1

Hanging Form - Elizabeth Anne Spence, acrylic on canvas, 2010 (detail)

Anne Spence came in on Monday and hung her exhibition in Studio A1. She’ll be exhibiting current work there through the end of February as one of our “Featured Artists”. Anne’s got a great selection of work on show – pieces that show as much where she began as a former graphic artist, but also where she’s going as that graphic tradition works its way into a new fine art aesthetic. I had a sneak preview of the work yesterday, and I was particularly taken with the way in which she’s taken photographic references and translated them into not just graphic forms and painting, but also allowed them to migrate very successfully back into the 3D realm of sculptural expression.

Don’t miss this chance to see what one of this year’s Second Year students at Glyndŵr is up to – exhibitions like Anne’s are real opportunities for all of us to stay in touch with what’s going on up there.

Anne will be in the Studio on the following days:

Wed Feb. 2nd 10-4
Sat Feb. 5th 10-4
Mon Feb. 9th 10-4
Wed Feb. 12th 10-4
Mon Feb 14th 10-4
Wed Feb 16th 10-4
Fri Feb 19th 10-4

Stop by and have a chat and a cup of tea!

Ann Spence at Studio A1

Feb. 2nd – 19th, the featured Inside Out artist in Studio A1 will be Elizabeth Anne Spence. Ann is a former graphic designer now doing a degree in Fine Arts at NEWI in Wrexham. Her exhibition of recent work will be open:

Wed Feb. 2nd 10-4
Sat Feb. 5th 10-4
Mon Feb. 9th 10-4
Wed Feb. 12th 10-4
Mon Feb 14th 10-4
Wed Feb 16th 10-4
Fri Feb 19th 10-4.

A great chance to see work by an emerging local student artist. Hope to see you there!

 

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