new work


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my exhibition at winterbourne show cases eight new abstracts and i will be talking about them this thursday during the lunchtime lecture. i’ll also be showing behind the scenes photographs taken during the making of our film, remembrance of things passed, and talking about the making of the portraits which are a new addition to the walls of winterbourne house. previously unseen photographs of winterbourne house & garden taken in the snow last january will also be seen when three feet of snow fell whilst the house was closed; a magical landscape. i have put together 100 odd images to show and just need to find now a memory stick with enough memory to store the material so i can bring it over on thursday. there was  mention of the exhibition in saturday’s birmingham mail. hope to see you there! birmingham mail article

Remembrance of Things Passed


A collaboration between Indian filmmaker, Parul Punjabi and British artist, Sara Hayward, the film recreates the life of an Edwardian English family and the several secrets they held- relying heavily on the dreams and memories of the various characters, instead of a linear, narrative description of their lives. Set in the idyllic, quintessentially English Winterbourne House and Gardens and structured loosely as a meditative, mood-poem, the film seeks to capture both the exterior visible reality and the inner subtle reality of its characters.

Building on Proust’s famous quote, ‘Remembrance of things past is not necessarily the remembrance of things as they were’, the filmmakers pay homage to the very idea of memory as they collectively remember the everyday life in the early 20th century. With no dialogue, the natural sounds and dreamlike imagery become crucial in evoking this memory of a bygone era.

winterbourne snow


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when i began my residency at winterbourne last january the snow had fallen and shaped winterbourne into a visually softened silent spectacle different to all that was to follow in the ensuing months of growth. this painting sought to capture the quiet beauty of the changed landscape and was the view form my studio window.

winterbourne revisited


winterbourne revisited

john nettlefold (1866-1930)

this painting of john nettlefold sought to capture his steely determination as he not only had built the first house in birmingham to have electricity (winterbourne in 1903) but also went onto forge through dynamic house planning which would change the lives of many for the better. sadly he himself went on to suffer ill health thereafter which must have been a tremendous worry for his close family.

my exhibition winterbourne revisited opens on 01 february and as you can imagine i am putting the final finishing touches to and framing the 18 paintings which will feature in the exhibition. to wet your appetite here is one portrait study of john nettlefold which will hang in the main house, and  hopefully in his study in a few weeks time. my stomach is turning as i anticipate the public’s reaction to my ten month residency. inspired by such an old and by now dear friend such as winterbourne has been amazing; thank you winterbourne for having me.

Remembrance of Things Passed


Upon the bridge at Winterbourne

Upon the bridge at Winterbourne

On a rare sunny day in mid June 2013 a short film was shot  with Parul Punjabi, a scholarship student in film studies at Birmingham University, at Winterbourne House & Garden, Edgbaston, Birmingham. The film, Remembrance of Things Passed will be shown at Winterbourne from February 2014. Much planning and days of preparation paid off as on the day as we were able to film  4 hours of footage which Parul expertly edited down to  22 minutes.  As Winterbourne is open daily it was difficult fielding visitors so that they were out of shot; I lost count of the number of times I said, “Excuse me, could you possibly…” The film features my daughter Sylvie Powis and Winterbourne gardener Phil Smith. Each were amenable and a joy to work with.

High winds & blades Day 18


 

water colour study from my sketch book

water colour study from my sketch book

Wednesday 17th April.

My how the year is skidding past. High winds meant that on arrival one of the volunteers who had been helping the staff put up a large marquee was very nearly badly hurt when a sudden gust meant the whole thing buckled; needless to say it was taken down immediately. Working on the process today cutting stencils and trying not to cut my fingers off. I was taking a section form a painting and putting it into another – like a transplant – or inlay. Popping out the stencils reminded me of those found at the bottom of the cereal packet. The plastic I am using is very strong consequently very difficult to cut. Forgot the plasters but didn’t need them. Realise I was working with stencils at the Museum of Royal Worcester. Forgot my camera. Went for a walk after lunch and saw these enormous yellow “crocae” which are called swamp lanterns (or skunk cabbage). Chatted to volunteer Hugh who was digging the anthemis border which was decimated by last year’s wet summer; also Berry who was tidying up the sunken garden and asked me if her eye looked sore; fortunately not.Yesterday I wrote a review of the Lucy Tomlins sound installation at Worcester Cathedral which I will upload plus my review of Dan Roach’s exhibition. Chatted to folk from Canada and southern India. Of course today was the day of Margaret Thatcher’s funeral so Winterbourne was very quiet. Arrived home at six thirty and slept for over an hour.