Autumn Open 2019

Autumn Open Exhibition 2019

31st August – 19th October

Current Exhibitors

Works Inspired by the Whittingham Music Festival

Whittington’s seventh international music festival made a big impression on five Borderland artists who were among the audience in May. With sketch-books in hand they recorded their impressions of the six-day programme of Czech classical music by attending rehearsals and performances by eleven world-class musicians.
The results of their creativity are on display in Oswestry’s Willow Gallery throughout September.

Julie Price

What can you say about painting landscapes that hasn’t been said already? It is after all, a personal response to things of nature. This work is my response.

I love painting landscapes, but often I don’t want a landscape to be a landscape at all, but merely an expression of it. So, after over 30 years of living, walking and painting in South Shropshire and the Welsh Borders, this new work is an immediate, searching, emotional, and sometimes playful contemplation between myself and the great outdoors.

Some may call my work abstract or expressionist because the subject may seem ambiguous or indistinct. But working outdoors in all weathers allows for rapid and responsive mark making, where the powers of emotional suggestion come into play. Using a large brush, I paint quickly, producing marks with a sense of urgency, I have to capture that moment in time somehow. I work in a spontaneous way, and usually several paintings are worked on during the process. All paintings are completed in one sitting.

My paintings are evocations from memory, suggestions and thoughts. They relate to observations made during my walks through colour, line, marks and rhythm of paint. Yet whether remembering, recasting, or inventing anew, all are a glimpse of my exterior life made visible on paper.

I have won a number of prestigious competitions, exhibited widely and have work in various collections throughout the UK

Previous to my painting career, I spent many years working in advertising and design agencies.

My love of painting landscapes is directly born from my intimate relationship with South Shropshire and The Welsh Borders, an area I have lived in and walked in for the past 30 years.
Using a large brush, I paint quickly, producing marks with a sense of urgency. Working outdoors means that the weather and atmosphere is constantly changing, so it’s all about capturing the moment. The more diverse the weather conditions the better. I like to take risks, pushing the work to the very edge of abstraction.
I have won a number of prestigious competitions, exhibited widely and have work in various collections throughout the UK.

Sylvia Stead

An embroiderer for over 60 years and a member of the Embroiderers Guild since 1987 during which time my main focus was on hand embroidery, traditional techniques and free machine embroidery.

Elizabeth Jean Ward

…has never been happy without a brush or a pencil in her hand, and has been known to paint with anything available and in a wide variety of media. She currently abides and works in Shrewsbury, having lived and exhibited work in Cumbria and the West Midlands. She gained an M.A. in Fine Art at the Birmingham Institute of Art and Design where she won the gold medal in the University’s Marine Painting competition.

The subject of her work is wide-ranging although there is a recurrent theme of viewing the world through some kind of transformation, whether by reflection as in the Erddig lake paintings or enlargement as in Untitled IV, for which the inspiration was the bar-code on a crushed beer-can. Taking an unusual viewpoint can make revelations about our environment.

Gail Dickenson

Having trained at Liverpool College of Art (now John Moores University) I have painted most of my life. I find it rewarding now that I’m retired to be able to paint whenever I please!

I have always lived in the countryside and am drawn to the ever-changing beauty of our amazing flora, fauna and landscapes. However, I have been lucky enough to have visited many exotic countries and feel particularly drawn to India. I hope my three paintings in this exhibition will convey the character and proud demeanour of the beautiful local people.

I paint in many mediums, and find the challenge of each one stimulating. Painting is in my soul and I am so grateful to be able to explore this gift. 

Georgina Shepherd

Painting for Georgina is an intimate means of sharing her expression of the landscape.  This is where she makes observational drawings; these being the first and most direct point of contact in the process and materialisation of her paintings that hover between abstraction, landscape and figuration.

Her perception of natural forms through gestural marks, vibrancy and energy illustrate her motivation to invite the viewer to contemplate, link and recall the ephemeral nature of the landscape through her interpretation of its presence.

Part of this current body of work explores the connections that rock climbers make before and during the ascent; the walk towards the rock face, the ‘reading’ of the route, its risk factors, techniques, characteristics and geology of the rock.  It is here that decisions require the climber to prepare placement of hands and feet and to gauge complexity, balance and ability to overcome perceived risk of fall, against the euphoria of overcoming the ‘crux’ move and emerging at the top of a gully, arête or slab wall.

The atmosphere, complexities of terrain that lay bare the scars of erosion, eruption and exploitation through farming and quarrying, are translated through visual enquiry and intrigue.  Scale becomes speculative.

It is Georgina’s vision and belief that her role becomes an observer and analyst of shared visual moments.

Judith Woods

Some pieces are made using found objects in conjunction with dissimilar materials. The juxtaposition of different materials, textures and colours, where each component contrasts and enhances the innate nature of each element can be visually stimulating. Combinations of rusted iron and smooth acrylic, painted metal, oiled wood or stone give constructions an unexpected dimension. I endeavour to create a shared appreciation of the beauty of natural and man-made materials with the spectator.

I re-contextualise mundane objects into three-dimensional larger minimalistic abstractions using materials that are removed from their previous familiarity. The diverse use of materials gives rise to forms and qualities in an investigation of abstract representation that is unexpected.  Surface treatment and colour play a significant role in my work adding to the coherence of the piece. Some materials, enhanced by a simple finish are left in their natural state; others are higher coloured.

 I am intensely interested in the concept of large scale sculpture in relation to the smaller representation in the form of jewellery. In the making of jewellery, each item is designed to relate to a piece of the sculpture. Where sculpture relies on a longer view and space to generate a visual tension and dialogue of the static three dimensional object, the jewellery creates a dialogue between the wearer and viewer in a kinetic close-up observation of detail. I do not lose sight of the need for a wearable and attractive piece of body adornment.

Outline Art

Outline Art is a group of professional artists who live on the borders of Cheshire East and Staffordshire.

The group was formed to promote the work of individual members who live and work in outlying areas, where easy access to the opportunities in large cities is limited. Our collective aim is to bring high quality work to the attention of a wider audience through exhibitions and events at venues throughout the region and beyond.

The ten members of the group combine a wealth of experience through backgrounds in education, industry, commerce, and arts organisations.

We work in different styles across a wide range of disciplines, including painting, ceramics, sculpture, photography, stitch, original printmaking and installation, ensuring a stimulating visual experience for visitors to our exhibitions.

Barbara Barlow

I am a printmaker specialising in reduction linocuts. I make very small editions, usually between five and fifteen. Creating linocuts is technically very demanding and each image will take up to five days to create. Time is required to ‘cure’ each layer of colour, prior to applying the next.

There is usually a back story to my images. For example, it may be that someone has asked me to create something on a subject they feel passionate about or I may be seeking to interpret a surface pattern using the medium of linocut.

Margaret Ann Brothwell (Outline Art)

As an artist, I am drawn to moments of inspiration which often catch me unawares. I enjoy working in a variety of media, experimenting on different supports.

Just as life is ever changing, a painting becomes what each viewer brings to it.

Estella Scholes (Outline Art)

I originally trained as a painter but now work mainly in original printmaking and artists books. I make etchings, monoprints and collagraphs, using my observations of the vanishing evidence of coastal industries which linger amongst more familiar natural objects found on the shorelines of North West Wales. These memories of texture, weathered colours, and forms eroded almost beyond recognition by the winds and tides, are further abstracted in these recent collagraphs.

Ann Roach (Outline Art)

When painting flowers, I am interested in the essence and vitality of the bloom. I aim to paint this as expressively as possible, often, for greater impact, the image spills over the mount.

Ondre Nowakowski (Outline Art)

I am fascinated in the ways that seemingly everyday experiences, objects, and observations have the potential to become iconic and symbolic. In my work I look for the extraordinary in the ordinary and the unfamiliar in the familiar. I use media to pursue answers to questions: What is it that makes the remarkable, remarkable? How do we escape the containment of our own subjectivity? The answer to the latter, for me, lies in the testing and sharing of ideas with others using creative media.

Anne Mychalkiw (Outline Art)

I had a rural upbringing on a farm in Mid-Wales. The River Severn flowed through the land. I have always been fascinated by the seasons and the changing colours.

The theme of my work is invariably linked to the countryside, flora and fauna.

I have a passion for surface pattern design. From a young age I was interested in patterns on objects, patterns in nature etc.

I collect old linens and patchwork fragments and often recycle them into my work.

I use a variety of textile techniques. They include patchwork, quilting and applique.

Bridget Bowie (Outline Art)

My prints are based on sketches and drawings done on site, providing an archive of information which is a source of inspiration and a challenge for technique and execution.

Penny Beautiman (Outline Art)

I initially trained in Textiles which still remains a massive passion of mine. I love to experiment, so I never restrict myself to convention and often use the needle, stitch or threads when making my work, either to add detail to a finished print, or more frequently when I am constructing the plate to print from!

My main interests are in working environments, the areas which are left after manufacture and industry. I am particularly aware of the imprint this has left on the landscape both urban and rural.

The basis for my current practice was founded whilst I was studying for an MA at Manchester Metropolitan University.

The overarching theme of all my work is entitled ‘Processing the void’. This manifests itself either through the starting point or in the techniques I choose to use.

I exhibit regularly in Cheshire and Staffordshire and am a member of Cheshire Artists Network and Outline Art.

I use print because the construction of the blocks gives me a physical involvement in the finished images, the cutting of the block is part of the enjoyment, as well as being in control of the marks made. I use lino, soft cut and MDF to produce the main outline and then add texture, usually mesh or sandpaper. I usually produce six prints of each composition and because of techniques used these can have variation in colour and pressure, each print s signed as Artist Proof.

I am interested in how we process our emotional responses to loss, places and objects of significance, and the passage of time. I can often be found yielding a craft knife, cutting away materials, removing and severing ties. I don’t attempt to replace things, but explore how we can find the positive in what remains.

Currently I am enjoying using the medium of print in various forms – Aluminium copper plate etching, collagraph and mono-print – to explore these ideas.

Allan Howard

Two paintings – one in Gouache and one in Oils. Two different mediums and two different ways of painting.

In Deep Ultramarine is a recent Gouache painted in April 2019. It is not derived from any external subject matter and is completely autonomous.Make of it as you will. Some shapes are underdrawn in pencil but most are not.

Blue Haven on the other hand is a kind of metaphor for a harbour. Calm within and wild without.This painting has no under drawing. It is straight in with a fully loaded brush.

Blue Haven I have for the most part abandoned subject matter. Patrick Heron used the phrase ‘the tyranny of the subject’. Without having to be dictated to by a chosen subject I am free to place any shape and any colour anywhere in the picture but this means the creative process is completely exposed and that much more difficult, but with ample rewards if you get it right.

Moira Metcalfe

My Creative spirit has always followed the folds and contours of dramatically illuminated landscape and seascape, the light and colour influencing my vision as I progress along my artistic path. My work is a personal statement of how I visualise and interact with the world as it unfolds into my ever expanding space.

I have lived almost all of my adult life in the Yorkshire Dales, where the inherent drama has been a major influence on my work. Having recently relocated to Cheshire I am finding a new calm as this gentler landscape is captivating my evolving imagination. Although I have worked in oil and acrylic in the past, at the moment watercolour is my preferred medium for this work, lending its serendipitous nature to my current way of thinking.

My work has been an ever changing process over the many years I have been doing it and is now in private collections worldwide. I have exhibited mainly in the north of England but also in London and Switzerland.

Lesley Fisher

Painting is an exciting journey of discovery for me. I am continually seeking new ways to express my personal visual depiction of the beauty around me.
My belief is that art should not stand still. It should continue to grow and evolve showing the imagination and innovation of the artist.
This latest work is a combination of coastal scenes and the colourful gardens I have visited and enjoyed.

Peter Moore

I am a trained artist with a PGCE from Cardiff University. I live in Llandudno in North Wales and the inspiration for my paintings lie in the landscape around me. I produce my finished paintings from outdoor drawings in my numerous sketchbooks and I am often walking in the Snowdonia mountains or along the coast with sketchbook in hand.

I paint with acrylic ink which is not only permanent but is very transparent. I can then layer my washes of colour to give luminosity to my paintings and capture mood and atmosphere.

James Stewart

My art education started at grammar school, progressing to advance level, with fine teachers, all practising artists. At seven I got my first camera, and have used photography throughout my career. After retiring, my photography and my sketch books kept up my interest in environmental design and visual arts. I returned to live in Wales in 2003, having previously lived seven miles across the border. Revisiting Liverpool, its historic docks and buildings now open to all, I am enjoying exploring places once closed to the public, like the docklands, with my photography. At post graduate level I tutored students in the fascinating study of “place”. The character of places still excites me, and I enjoy sharing my interests with others through exhibiting my pictures. The Liverpool Docks are certainly true “places” full of contrasts between old and new ways of living.

Jean E Murphy LRPS

I enjoyed studying Art Photography at Kenton College, Newcastle upon Tyne and received my LRPS award at the end of the course. I like the magic of the darkroom so have kept up with darkroom practice as well as digital work. I like reflections and unusual viewpoints, detail and abstraction, patterns and textures. The view from my window at night was irresistible!