Summer Open 2019

Summer Open Exhibition
Earth, Air, Fire & Water

Saturday 6 July – 24 Aug

Soil Degradation, Air Pollution, Global Warming & Water Poisoning are all having devastating effect on the Earth’s biodiversity as well as a serious impact on human health and well being.

This poignant exhibition aims to raise awareness, through art, of environmental issues and the damage that consumer culture is causing to the natural world. We therefore encourage artists to create thought-provoking and innovative works that address many of the issues affecting our Planet Earth and the incredible unique diversity of the life it currently supports.

Featured Artists

Christine Davies

Recently the inspiration for my artwork has been driven by the natural World. I think that art is a powerful medium to draw attention to the harm humans are doing to the planet  I want to make people realise that the planet doesn’t just belong to us, that we have to share it with all living creatures and that we need to change the way we live out lives so that we live in harmony with the Earth. That we can not keep using up many of the Earths natural resources, allowing animal and plant habitats to be destroyed, allowing endangered animals to be killed.

    This painting ‘Polar Bear- It’s Our Planet Too’ is linked to Water showing the polar bear surrounded by the sea. This is to make the point that the ice is melting in the Arctic Circle at an increasing rate and polar bears are finding it harder to survive. I wanted the polar bear to be expressive so try and link to the viewer. The painting is done in acrylic on board with underpainting and then layers of wash overlay to create the water.

Debra Warne

I love nature, animals and colour and that is reflected in my work. My paintings tend to be bright and happy, because that is how I feel.

Daniel James Yeomans

Daniel studied at the Charles H. Cecil Studios in Florence, where he trained using a technique known as ‘sight-size’ favoured by many of the masters such as Velasquez & Van Dyck. In his 2nd year Daniel received a scholarship and spent another year as a teacher/studio assistant whilst continuing his studies.  In-keeping with his training, Daniel continues to paint directly from life under natural light, and has a purpose built studio in the Welsh countryside, Montgomeryshire.

Jenny O’Leary

Sarah Hill

Glass is an amazing material – it can be transparent, translucent, reflective, iridescent, light-catching, eye-catching yet unpredictable. That is why I find it so fascinating and captivating to work with.

For my glass landscapes I use an amalgamation of transparent, hand-made streaky glass, sheet glass, frits and powders (I mix my own colours, seeking to match those in the natural world.)

I also look for chemical reactions in the glass which create a ‘third colour’. The pieces usually have several firings, cold-worked and often sandblasted to remove the ‘shiny’ aspect of glass. I feel sandblasting reveals an extra depth to detail and colour.

Martin Salway

I find my inspiration comes from living in North Shropshire with its stunning countryside.

Short trips into North Wales provide further fuel for my fire!

Painting in oils using traditional technique and the heavier impasto style. I never cease to enjoy the offering of oil paint onto my chosen surface.

Recent retirement has given me more time to paint and improve not only as an artist but also the way I look at our world: Becoming increasingly aware I am chronicling the environment and the way we use it.

Jane Brookshaw

I grew upon a farm in the beautiful countryside of the Welsh Borders and have been painting all my life.

My inspiration is drawn from the things I love, nature, the countryside, animals and in my abstract work, this is more about colour and emotion. I apply the paint to the canvas in a spontaneous way, producing marks quickly, with energy and gradually building layer upon layer until it is completed.

Art, like music or literature had the power to uplift, heal, challenge and can sometimes even make you smile.

Philip Callaghan

My work focuses on the interface between people and the natural world.

I work primarily in wood and stone and my practice often involves the inclusion of other materials.

Here, the imperfection of the act of conservation is shown in the ‘repair’ of the forms. The ‘staples’ are copper electrical wire, chosen to highlight man-made intervention and to show our intrusion is not unbeautiful.

Originally from Belfast, now living in north Wales, I draw inspiration from the rural landscape as it contrasts with the urban desert of my childhood.

Susanna Callaghan

My paintings focus on the relationship between humans, the elements and all other living beings. I question how we may evolve this to a more harmonious interrelationship.

Acrylics dry fast, so I must paint fast, direct from my subconscious drives, dreams and emotions. My paintings and philosophy of life are influenced by surrealism and moving towards minimalism.

Born in London, now living in north Wales, much of my time is spent outdoors, living and working with the natural rhythms and flows. I also sculpt in wood and stone, a beautiful way to express connection in a tactile form.

‘Allegory’ expresses my thoughts around the relationship between the elements of life in the future, if we continue on our present trajectory.

Hilary Reed

Pesticide use, deforestation, large scale agriculture. The clear fell mono culture, the magnificant forests that are just residual energy – fields of ghosts.

This group of works is about pollination and the potential devastation of our world without insects and plant pollination. Its inspired by my garden and the plants and flowers growing in it to feed me. The loss of meadows. The mature trees each supporting hundreds of species, including us. The everyday cycle of life. The choices I make and the reaction those choices have in the wider world.

Over time my practice has and is becoming more abstract but I like to include a bit of realism within the abstract and have started using materials other than canvas and paper to paint on such as pieces of scrap wood with cuts and marks in. I use the technique of underpainting a lot, building up layers then removing to reveal colour, shape and texture and create depth. I like the unpredictable nature of this way of working.

I use all sorts of materials including acrylic, oil paint, emulsion paint, oil pastel, charcoal and pencil make marks and then I start to work into the paint with thin pieces of metal, card board, knifes, rollers and sandpaper.
I have hope for regeneration and abundance, there is always hope! I want to capture that, along with a little bit of beauty.

Jane Samuel

My work reflects our journey through life, with ceramics inspired by the coast, broken shells, and the movement of the sea, with its ever-changing effect on the beach it washes over. 

Looking deeper into my work it can be said that the fragility of the human mind and body coupled with the unpredictability of life itself, if visualised, are like the broken and fragile shards of porcelain which fill my forms. 

Often our fragility is hidden away under many protective layers, these layers are represented by the glaze; which when fired envelops many of the shards, as they are sanded away the hidden beauty beneath is revealed. These fragile shards are ‘held’ in strong silence by the forms that surrounds them.

Elliot Channer

Born in 1989 in Staffordshire, Elliot showed a passion for wildlife and art from a young age. Described as one of the ‘young stars’ of the international art fair circuit by Belgravia magazine, he is influenced by the animal sculptures of Rembrandt Bugatti and Antoine- Louis Barye. He focuses on capturing the life and grace of the subject, concentrating on their key features but allowing spontaneity to make up the main body of the sculpture. Largely self-taught, Elliot takes inspiration from the countryside, initially in Staffordshire and Derbyshire, Elliot now travels the country in order to observe and photograph animals in their natural habitat.

Alongside lifesize sculptures, he also scales down large animals creating more manageable sculptures. Focusing his art on British and international wildlife, Elliot’s clay sculptures are then cast in bronze. He works closely with the team of skilled craftsmen at the bronze foundry in Birmingham where his work is cast using the ancient Lost wax process.

Rachel Harris

I love scavenging the Strandline for treasure! This treasure for me also helps to clean the beaches I am lucky enough to spend my holidays on beachcombing!   Rope, netting (known as ghostnets), buoys and other fishing detritus are  dislodged, thrown or discarded from boats and do not rot, it entangles in the debris and is brought up on the beaches of Wales, Connemara in Ireland, and the Outer Hebrides where I collect, weave, knit, sew it all as my visual poems come to life in the small hours of my holidays or in my garage at home.

Judith Samuel

Judith’s proximity to and love of the sea informs all her work.  She paints primarily in oils, sometimes in egg tempera.  She is inspired by the seabirds of North Wales but she has also in recent years visited Senegal and the Canadian Arctic in pursuit of seabirds to sketch. 

Most recently she has visited the Falkland Islands, which is where most of the present paintings were produced. She is inspired by the illustrations of Eric Ennion, who said that the essential motive in painting birds was not to portray the species in general but to capture the essence of ‘that particular and individual bird alive before you while you sketch’. 

David Bannister

David’s work is diverse and exploratory. The Saddle. Brecon Beacons  was completed from memory following a walk up to Corn Du and Pen y fan in the Brecon Beacons. David’s  work has mainly centred around the landscape and exploring mood and atmosphere within the landscape genre. Out of this have come paintings inspired by the theme of Inner and Outer Worlds- these paintings are as a response to David’s interest in the nature of human consciousness, the spiritual realms and the new discoveries in the nature of reality and the universe.

Gill Crozier

“Fundamentally I am drawn to the underlying structure of landscape and of human interaction with it.

I work with landforms from drawings, photographs and memory. Points of departure come from direct experience or from the written word.”

Janie McLeod

Janie McLeod is essentially a landscape painter but draws on the thinking and working practice of Abstract Expressionism.  What goes on the canvas is not so much about creating an image but more a process that seeks to show the immediacy and excitement of painting.

It is the often difficult battle between what is seen and what is felt that is played out on the painted surface.  The sheer physicality of moving paint around whilst retaining an emotional connection to ‘Place’ (most often the far West of Cornwall and North Wales)  is what challenges Janie during each work.

Oswestry Hill Fort

Works in response to Oswestry’s Iron Age hill fort. The earthworks, which remain one of the best preserved hill forts in the UK, have been described as “The Stonehenge of the Iron Age Period”.