Sunday, 21 February 2010

Amanda Simmons in Craft and Design Magazine

If you click on the pages above you will be able to read the article.

Amanda Simmons, who is exhibiting with us from the 13th of March (the Private View is on the evening of 12th March 7pm - 9pm), has a really nice piece in the March 2010 issue of Craft and Design magazine. Her career path has been a fascinating journey, and she never gave up on finding her true calling in life.

I am busy getting the Private View cards ready for Amanda's exhibition - sticking address labels on what seems like an endless pile of cards. Since I did my Adobe InDesign course last year, designing all the cards myself is really enjoyable - it's lovely not to have to convey my ideas by painstakingly drawing out the plan of the card by hand. I can just play around with my ideas on the computer until I get something we're happy with, and send it straight to print.

Amanda will be exhibiting her glass alongside six different painters: Michael J. Ashcroft, Josephine Broekhuizen, Winifred Hodge, James Orr, Anitra Rushbrook and Rosie Villiers - Stuart.

Saturday, 20 February 2010

A bottom in the window

ANITA KLEIN New Shoes from Soldini £340 framed

We changed the gallery window earlier in the week. We try to change our window displays at least once a week. When we put this drypoint 'New Shoes from Soldini' by Anita Klein in the window, who'd have thought that it would cause so much interest! The number of people who stop to look, and point, and laugh. I wish I could post a photo of their faces as they smile through the window!

Friday, 19 February 2010

Peter Pan Update

I couldn't resist sharing this photo of Peter Pan looking exceptionally cute in his new stable rug.

It's a week today since we got him back from the Equine Hospital at Glasgow University and his treatment for Cushing's Disease is going well.

He gets cheekier by the day. We have started bringing his friend Hamish in to keep him company during the day and there is a lot of whinnying to be heard at dinner time! Peter Pan was feeling so well today he even managed to have a buck round his stable when it was time for Hamish to go back to his field.

It has been a good week in the gallery. Half Term holidays meant a lot of new visitors.

Tuesday, 16 February 2010

Van Gogh at The Royal Academy

Just over a week ago I was at the Royal Academy in London to see The Real Van Gogh: The Artist and his Letters. It is, not surprisingly, proving incredibly popular.

I don't think I've ever been to such a crowded exhibition. It did have the feeling of a rugby scrum at some points, with Royal Academy 'ladies' elbowing their way towards the front of the crowds! I more or less gave up trying to see Van Gogh's letters as they are available to view online and the cases that they were displayed in were completely shrouded by people who were spending ages pouring over them.

I left the show with a slightly heavy heart and didn't have the feeling of elation that I got when I visited the Van Gogh museum in Amsterdam. After chatting about this with my brother Leo we decided it was because the inclusion of his preparatory sketches and his private letters makes this exhibition incredibly personal.

You feel his struggles and see how hard he strived to be better and better, with very little positive recognition from anyone. The exhibition is also a story of brotherly love, you are left in no doubt of Theo's commitment to what Vincent was doing. The fact that Theo kept all his letters so carefully shows that he recognised the significance of his brother's talent and I'm sure he knew his letters would be of great interest in the future. The pen illustrations in his letters are so intricate, I found it interesting that they were often done after he had completed a painting - on the whole they weren't sketches of his ideas, rather sketches to show Theo what he had completed. In the age of digital cameras and email I wonder if Van Gogh would have been emailing Theo from the Cafe next to The Yellow House with images of his latest work!

Thursday, 11 February 2010

New Paintings from Jonathan Mitchell

JONATHAN MITCHELL Winter, the Haughs oil on board 34 x 45 cm £825

JONATHAN MITCHELL Winter Landscape oil on board 45 x 60 cm £1,825

Jonathan delivered new paintings to the gallery today. Beautiful wintry landscapes. Our new mixed exhibition opens on Saturday - no private view as it is not the best time of year to expect people to travel on a specific day, but I hope you will all pop in to see the new paintings and also the new prints by Lisa Hooper.

Gallery work is being done remotely on my part as I am back up in Glasgow with Peter Pan my Shetland pony. He has been admitted back into the Equine Hospital. A diagnosis of Cushing's Disease looks more than likely. That will mean that, although he will never be cured, we will be able to give him medication to improve and, hopefully, reverse some of his symptoms. It looks as if we will be traveling home tomorrow.

Thursday, 4 February 2010

Lisa Hooper ~ Hydrangea

LISA HOOPER Hydrangea linocut £290 framed, £250 unframed

Here's an image of Lisa Hooper's new linocut, Hydrangea, that I mentioned in a previous posting.

I put it in the window today along with some paintings by Maggie Savage and Alison Proudlock. All very soft feminine colours.

Our friend Jo brought us some heavily scented Witch Hazel today, such a mysterious looking plant, I absolutely love it.

Wednesday, 3 February 2010

Galloway Forest Dark Starry Skies

As well as being so very cold last night the sky was also incredibly clear, with the most brilliant display of stars. It was pretty obvious why nearby Galloway Forest Park has been awarded 'Dark Sky' status.

Being slightly preoccupied by Van Gogh's work at the moment, I was immediately reminded of his masterly depictions of starry skies. Last year I was lucky enough to see his exhibition of night paintings in Amsterdam.

I can't think of many artists who tackle painting stars and a true night sky. The sky here was so beautiful last night that I can see why - the challenge would just be too great for most people.