Wednesday, 29 April 2009

From Pigments to Paint

Mixing pure pigment with linseed oil

Here's another photo from our visit to Rembrandt's house. We watched a demonstration of making oil paints from earth pigments and semi precious stones. The powdered minerals were mixed with a little pure alcohol and then linseed oil. The mixture was then emulsified to a glossy oil paint by grinding on a stone block with a flat circlular stone. Rembrandt had lots of students to do this laborious process for him. They would also go on to mix any individual colours that he required using a basic palate from only a few pure pigments.

Tuesday, 28 April 2009

Rembrandt the Printmaker

The Printmaker at Rembrandt's house in Amsterdam

A reproduction of the printing press that Rembrandt used.

Zoe and Jill with an etching hot off the press.

On our recent trip to Amsterdam we visited Rembrandt's house.

Because he went bankrupt there are detailed records of his house contents. This allowed the museum curators to make an accurate reconstruction of his house contents. He had his studio in his house and pupils paid to study with him. Next to his painting studio he had a Printmaking room complete with Printing press. We watched a demonstration of the etching process and different etching techniques were explained. Rembrandt often used etching and drypoint on the same plate and his etching plates were often worked over several times, creating very different versions of the same image.

In the upper part of the house there is a huge collection of his wonderful etchings. I think one of my favourites was a tiny sleeping dog, the only image he ever created of an animal on its own. I also loved his studies of people - he always managed to convey their individual characters with such vibrancy whether they were peasants or important dignitaries.

Monday, 27 April 2009

Rebecca Callis, Jonathan Mitchell, David Sinclair RSW

Jonathan Mitchell and Rebecca Callis with Jonathan's painting 'Sunday Afternoon, Castle Douglas' and Rebecca's Trio of Pots.

I didn't get time to upload these photos yesterday as we were at Glasgow Art Fair.

Here are few snaps from our Saturday Private View - Rebecca Callis' Porcelain and Jonathan Mitchell and David Sinclair RSW paintings. It's the first time we've had an all day Opening and it was a much more relaxed affair, with lots of time to chat to customers. Both Jonathan and Rebecca were there to chat to customers and it was also an opportunity for Jonathan to meet the people who bought his paintings from our exhibition of his work in 2008.

Jill with 'Pedestrians, Central London' by Jonathan Mitchell

There is a really change of ambiance in the gallery after the busy Printmakers' Exhibition. We felt when we chose these three artists that the works would complement each other. We were delighted to have this confirmed when we'd finished hanging the paintings and placing Rebecca's pots around the gallery. The soft glazes in greys, blues and pinks that Rebecca uses look exceptionally good with Jonathan's cityscapes and the pale blue/grey paint that David is so fond of in his Still Life work.

Zoe with 'Peeled Orange' by David Sinclair RSW

Thursday, 23 April 2009

A quick change around

Jonathan Mitchell unpacking his work and Jill hanging one of his new works.

Jonathan unpacking his paintings whilst having tea and cake!

We had a very busy day taking down the Printmakers' Exhibition. Jonathan Mitchell arrived with his paintings, we unpacked them and started to hang the new exhibition straight away. The exhibition already looks stunning - David Sinclair's still life paintings complement Jonathan's landscapes and cityscapes beautifully and Rebecca Callis' porcelain looks so pretty clustered in little groups round the gallery.

Wednesday, 22 April 2009

Flying Fox

RICHARD W BOARDMAN Flying Fox - wax - work in progress
height: 31 cm. width: 9 cm. length: 50 cm.

I've been doing some flying myself recently as I'm just back from a wonderful trip to Amsterdam followed by a fantastic exhibition packed trip to London. I'll be posting more about it over the next few days - if I get time in between hanging the new exhibition ready for Saturday.

Whilst I was away I was excited to receive an image of 'Flying Fox' by Richard W. Boardman. Richard is exhibiting with us in August and this is his latest sculpture. Richard has worked the sculpture in wax and it is now ready to go to the foundry - the finished bronze should be ready for us in August. The photo above has been 'photoshoped' to create an impression of the colour of the finished bronze, as the wax Richard works in is actually a rather delightful bright red.

Wednesday, 15 April 2009

Last few days of the Printmakers' Exhibtion

Our front room, you can just spot the huge picture frame that we have mounted on the ceiling.

Jill looking in the browser

I'm going to miss this exhibition when we take it down next week. We have had great feedback (and sales!) from our customers which makes all the hard work worth it.

It has been inspiring to walk round all the work and see the seemingly endless ways that people make prints. I hate the way the word 'print' has been high jacked by the reproduction/giclee market but anyone who visited the gallery in the last few weeks would be under no illusions that we were celebrating original printmaking in the UK, in all its vibrancy.

Monday, 13 April 2009

David Sinclair RSW

DAVID SINCLAIR RSW Humbugs and Whisky Nips 
oil on canvas 14 x 10 inches  £900

DAVID SINCLAIR RSW Glass and Apricots
Oil on canvas 12 x 10 inches  £850

Oil on canvas 26 x 36 inches  £2000

Oil on canvas 20 x 24 inches  £1600

David Sinclair's paintings have been delivered ready for his exhibition which opens on the 25th of April. Here is a preview of the work we will be showing - we are so excited about the exhibition - the paintings are absolutely exquisite.

Our online gallery should be up and running by early May - I want to get it looking absolutely right before we launch it. I will keep you informed of progress!


Friday, 10 April 2009

Chocolate all round

I've got this bowl of chocolate eggs ready for customers in the Gallery this weekend. We will be open as normal, 10am to 5pm on Saturday. Just for the Easter weekend we are also on Sunday 12 noon to 4pm. On Monday we will be open the usual times: 10am to 5pm.

The gallery is full of hyacinths and daffodils from our garden.

Hope you all have a good Easter break.

Saturday, 4 April 2009

A pony at the bottom of the garden

I took this photo a couple of days ago, on what was a spectacularly sunny day. I was out at the bottom of the Gallery garden admiring all the Spring flowers. As looked over our wall I caught sight of a Shetland pony! Our garden is right in the middle of Castle Douglas so it wasn't something I was expecting.

Our neighbour had his Shetland pony Jilly out enjoying the sunshine. Bliss!

Wednesday, 1 April 2009

Kitty & Dude

This week we have new pots in the gallery made by Cosima Sempil from her Kitty and Dude range, as featured in this month's Homes & Interiors Scotland magazine. We have milk jugs, winged mugs, swooping swallow brooches and little bird brooches.