ARTIST'S RESIDENCY AT THE DEAN HERITAGE CENTRE
I’ve always loved museums, especially smaller local ones that display my favourite subject, the artifacts of everyday life.
A few years ago I approached The Dean Heritage Centre, here in the Forest of Dean with the idea of becoming an Artist in Residence. I wanted to spend time amongst the museum’s treasures, looking in detail and recording my favourite pieces in pencil and paint. I was on site with sketchbooks and drawing boards, a couple of times a week for eight weeks of the summer, and also ran some childrens drawing workshops.
There was a great response from visitors, who enjoyed seeing my work in progress around the museum, and were often sparked into conversations by objects I was sketching, ‘keen to share their memories with me.
The residency culminated in a popular exhibition at the centre.
MUSEUM IN THE PARK, STROUD ‘COLLECTIONS’
With felt maker Sarah Brooker
I met artist, Sarah Brooker, at Brewery Arts in Cirencester and we realised that we were working in very different mediums but with almost identical subject matters, Collections. Feathers, cotton reels, hankerchiefs and cutlery!
We decided to exhibit together, and worked from both our own collections of favourite objects and each others. We first showed work together at Brook Street Gallery in Hay on Wye. Our approaches were very different but the paintings and felts complimented each other perfectly in a colourful collection of favourite things. We liked the idea of touring the exhibition, so approached the Museum in the Park, Stroud. We proposed a residency, where we would both work from the museum’s collections and would hold an exhibition of paintings and felts alongside the objects that inspired them.
We loved the large and light gallery at Museum in the Park and the exhibition was a huge success, with visitors especially enjoying the display cases of treasures and sketchbooks Sarah and I had brought from home.
Postcards were produced of paintings inspired by the museum’s treasures, for sale in the shop, and Sarah and I ran workshops to co-incide with the residency and exhibition.