The Bus Sculpture Trail – Painting Cath Kidston and Orla Kiely buses.

   Cath Kidston and Orla Kiely have very different styles which necessitate different techniques to reproduce them on the bus sculptures. Both designs work beautifully when scaled up and I found them both a delight to work on. Getting the … Continue reading

Reach Art Project, Phase One – submitted Designs 2014

My designs and ideas submitted for Reach Art Project – Phase One. Reach is an artist project I was commissioned to undertake earlier this year which was linked to the physical redevelopment of the St Annes Swimming Pool on the Fylde coast. This commission focused … Continue reading

Junior Rangers Art Activities, Beacon Country Park

               What fun I have had this summer running workshops in the wonderful location of Beacon Country Park in Upholland. I have been doing these summer art activities for the Junior Rangers for a couple of years now and it is always an absolute pleasure … Continue reading

Ceramic bus commission for The Year of the Bus

I am very excited to be working again for Wild In Art on their new project with Transport for London (TfL), bringing up to 60 New Routemaster bus sculptures to London this September as part of celebrations to mark the … Continue reading

Walk On Exhibition at The Atkinson

Last night was the Private view of the fascinating new exhibition at The Atkinson.

From Richard Long to Janet Cardiff 40 years of Art Walking, this exhibition explores some of the many ways in which artists have approached, experienced and documented walks/walking.

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Tracy Hanna – Hill Walking

For this exhibition I created an interactive piece of art within the ArtBox to get visitors to consider their journey to The Atkinson. With reference to the work in the exhibition created by Sophia New and Daniel Belasco Rogers in Plan B, visitors are invited to mark their journey along a large map of Southport by threading red yarn through eyelets. The process of considering and contemplating the journeys is explored further by the written notes at the start of each line which give personal accounts of observations and opinions. This piece of work will develop over the duration of the exhibition.

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Displayed is photographs and drawings from Marina Abramovic’s epic 90 day walk from the East along the great wall of China to meet her partner, Ulay travelling towards her from the West in The Lovers. I find this incredibly moving especially when contemplating the actuality of hour upon hour of walking with prolonged focus and anticipation of the final goal. Also the poignancy of the meeting of two people, the importance we place on finding the other, how far will we travel? of two becoming one. The couple split up not long after this project which adds a new dimension and line of thought when contemplating the work.

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 Julian Opie has gone for little steps, literally. Using computer animation he had documented the walk of a toddler. Taking a photograph every twenty steps the toddler makes, these beautiful images are displayed one after another forming a mesmerizing experience of the journey undertaken.

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There is the opportunity to be involved with Mike Collier hosting art walks during the summer along The Sefton Coast. Mike’s work is a fascinating mix of word, spoken word, visual art, sound, photography and happenings along literal journeys and journeys into thought and retrospect. Journeys are recorded and explored in multiple layers leaving an enriched understanding of place and time.

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This exhibition is a fantastic collection of work that makes me think, makes me laugh and inspires me to create.  For this a huge thank you to everyone involved and in particular Cynthia Morrison-Bell,  who was inspirational to be around during the set up.

Now, Im off for a walk.

Saturday Art Club – World Map Project

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The first term project for this years Saturday Art Club at The Chapel Gallery was based on a map of the world.

In the beginning we discussed places in the world that the children had personal affinities with – where they may have family living, where they are from, where they had been on holiday or where they would love to go.  We used an atlas and located different countries and discussed if they were well known for anything in particular.

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These discussions led to visual interpretations which the children developed in their work. Some had most detail in the sea, some had details in sea and on land whilst others perfected particular painting techniques. We used mixed media – collage, painting and drawing to create personalised maps of the world.

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These maps were based on a factual depiction of the world, however creative imaginations took small liberties with new islands popping up here and there. This project was great fun and some really stunning work was developed which the children were thrilled to take home.

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Public Art Commission – Reach Art Project Lytham St Annes

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I am really excited about being chosen as one of two artists to work on this project related to St Annes Swimming Pool on the Fylde coast.

St Annes Swimming Pool, which is run by Fylde Coast YMCA on behalf of Fylde Council, reopened in January 2014 after a £625,000 refurbishment to changing rooms, the spectator area and café and entrance/reception area.

St Annes Swimming Pool sits within a significant heritage context, within the grade 2 listed registered landscape setting of the Promenade gardens, on the site of the former open air baths. It has a strong connection to its place and with the local community.

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The aim with this project is to look to develop proposals that see an improvement in the signage and access to the building, as well as improvements to the external environment within which it sits, all complementing the improvements to date that have taken place within the building.

I will be focusing on visual imagery and how this venue might be profiled  in and around the building and along the main thoroughfare through Lytham St. Annes.  Artist Sophy King will work with the Landscape Architect and focus on the immediate heritage and environment around the Swimming Pool. http://www.palace.co.uk/sophking/

For this first phase of this project Sophy and I will work collaboratively on an intensive programme of creative engagement activity aimed at involving the community in developing ideas and proposals for the art works. This process will involve workshops with community groups, users of the pool and local schools, as well as onsite engagement with the public, to develop ideas and proposals for permanent interventions into the scheme.

This job represents a fantastic opportunity for me to learn more about working within the public art area and to develop my outlay and experience as a visual artist. It also is a great chance to work with the inspiring artist Sophy King and has the added benefit of having mentoring sessions with artist Alan Dunn.

We have set up a blog and face book page as places to exhibit the work created and collected during this first phase and to share the developments of this project, please follow the links below for more information:

http://reachartproject2014.wordpress.com/

https://www.facebook.com/reachartproject

Artist in Residence, The Atkinson, Southport

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I have recently been asked to fulfil the role of Art in Residence at The Atkinson Gallery in Southport.

The Atkinson is Southport’s beautiful new home for music, theatre, art, poetry, literature and history, right in the middle of Lord Street in Southport. Significant investment has been made in refurbishing the stunning 19th century buildings, to create a really welcoming multi art-form venue with a strong contemporary feel.

As artist in residence I am charged with animating the ArtBox with launch events for each exhibition, creating and facilitating workshops and art activities for public events, adults and children and for school groups. These activities will tie into the exciting range of exhibitions and theatre productions The Atkinson is hosting.

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Showing until 16th March is the wonderful touring exhibition of Matisse’s later works in cuts out, represented in lithographs. This fascinating exhibition shows some of his most iconic work using this innovative technique.

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I recently designed a day workshop for children where we created our own cut out design on the ArtBox wall. The gallery was filled with children and adults who all contributed to the 7ft by 14ft artwork as a homage to Matisse’s cut outs.

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The day was a huge success with many thanks to the wonderful team at The Atkinson for their support and help throughout. This collaborative piece of work is on display in The ArtBox for the duration of the Matisse Cut Outs exhibition.

For more information on all the fantastic opportunities to get involved with art at The Atkinson please visit their website: http://www.theatkinson.co.uk/

and pop along to show your support for this forward thinking, dynamic creative hub in the heart of Southport.

Gordon Matta-Clarke at The Open Eye Gallery Liverpool

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I attended a fascinating talk by the charming and compelling Lorenzo Fusi on Gordon Matta-Clarke  as part of the Alvin Baltrop and Gordon Matta-Clarke: The Piers from Here exhibition.

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The talk spanned Matta-Clarkes vast and varied output as an artist, including his involvement in creating FOOD, a restaurant cum artwork, which often gave away food for free.  I was particularly enticed by the knowledge that a singular daily special was served  advertised on a chalk board, which may or may not be food. Some of the things on offer on the menu included improvised music and poetry, food for the soul.

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My favourite aspect of Matta-Clarkes visual output is his interactions with buildings, specifically his conical intersect project. I am truly inspired by these cuts into buildings that open up new view points and channels of perspective, allowing light to pierce in new ways and creating dizzying effects.

The Open Eye Gallery is located on Mann Island in Liverpool. For more information on their exhibitions and events please visit their website: http://www.openeye.org.uk/