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

evelyn nettlefold


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i am rooting though my plan chest drawers looking for paintings of pots and gardens in my archive  that are relevant to be current exhibition at winterbourne. i shall pop them into a browser and they’ll be available unframed. i watched a programme late last night about exercise and it said for general well being to keep moving so that is what i am trying to do. this update will therefore be short as in order to write it i have to sit very still and that is just about the worst thing for the human body. i have pilates this evening so there is some slow movement in that and on a wednesday evenings i’ve joined a life drawing class so i shall have to use my imagination to work out how i can move about in that one; maybe i’ll strap my board around my neck and move around like an ice cream seller. this is one of my favourite portraits of the nettlefold children as i can just imagine evie running up and stopping still for just a second to have her photograph taken before dashing off to get on with what she really wants to do. most probably buy an ice cream.

valerie nettlefold


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today i have been deciphering the handwriting of all the souls who visited my studio at winterbourne last year and kindly left their email to be reminded of the exhibition. it wasn’t easy; did they mean to write the whole thing in capitals, is that a hyphen or an underscore etc etc. still, i am hoping that those get through will then be forwarded to their friends so ensuring the power of the online jungle drums. we had a load of logs delivered yesterday and i helped paul with the last couple of barrow loads before they get rained upon; the wood store now looks like they do in a magazine and a cosy log fire every evening is a real joy and jut about makes january and february bearable. i suppose they had coal fires at winterbourne at the turn of the century. the winterbourne portrait trail is now up and running and valerie here is upstairs on a corridor; she does look rather aloof, perhaps even a little startled.

ken Nettlefold


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Well, today is the first day of my exhibition and it has rained and rained and rained. If we still lived in London we would have spent the day wondering around the V & A and the dog would have crossed his legs. I really like the new boy’s bedroom they have created at Winterbourne with its male atmosphere and masculine furnishings. This portrait study of Ken hangs very well in there an it is uncanny how the colours work so well together as it hadn’t been created when I painted this. Strange to think this room was my original studio exactly one year ago until I moved to the hay Loft studio in June. You can just about make out the use of varnish in an Edwardian tulip motif across his face. I like the look of youthful apprehension in his face. We were all there once.

beatrice nettlefold


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tonight is the eve of my exhibition opening; fingers and toes crossed a few people pop by tomorrow to see a year’s painting finally in situ! there’s lots to see; eight portraits, eight semi abstract large scale paintings, three small oils and one short film. Plus a great cafe for a coffee at half time. Yes, I have surprised myself, yes, I have found a new language, and yes, I believe it is worth a train ticket to see. On for ten weeks until april 9th let me know what you think if you’re in the university of birmingham neighbourhood.

lois nettlefold


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quite a few people have a soft spot for young lois because of her enormous hat and serious expression. i suspect this portrait study will go in the boy’s room at winterbourne next to the portrait study of ken which i will be uploading in the next few days. in my studio in worcester i am just putting the finishing touches to some of the larger semi abstract paintings; it is hard to believe that this time next week they will be all hung at winterbourne. can’t wait to see them in the freshly painted contemporary coach house gallery at winterbourne so that i can stand right back and get a take on them all; plus seeing the portraits dotted around the house will put them in a very different sort of context. i have a lot to do before then however!