Home Is Where The Art Is

If you are an artist, a lover of art then I hope that I can inspire you to do what you love.

Wednesday, 28 November 2012

70,000 Page Views Not Too Shabby!

I get a bad case of the guilts when I don't blog even though I know that my readership fluctuates more than this current double dip recession. I did start to write one yesterday but the scratchy throat, itchy ears and runny nose meant my ability to string a sentence together was virtually non existent.
I am totally ok with the fact that I write winners and losers though as it is a promise that I made to myself and two years in I have nearly written a blog a day.
Some are definitely better than others but I am only human (mostly).
I see it as my part of my current job to keep up to date with the latest developments in the art world and the link below is an interesting read.
As I teacher I was always perturbed by the removal of the core skills from the art curriculum. They were not removed completely but they were swept under the beautiful textile rug. By core skills I mean the old fashioned things such as drawing, composition and perspective. I have met degree students studying Fine Art who have not had to produce any drawing whatsoever throughout their degree. How is that possible?
You may go on to become the most abstract conceptual artist that the world has ever known but a grounding in real skills is important. So that you can apply your understanding to whatever you produce.
This article discusses the bursting of the shock factor bubble. I should add at this point I am not saying I whole heartedly agree with the article because I do not. But I do think it is interesting and you might too.

Entering the final few days of the current exhibition so if you can come and see it before it is gone. But I am already gearing up for the next one so check out the gallery Facebook page and get an idea of what is coming next.

Workshop Gift Vouchers are now available at the gallery they are the perfect gift as they will allow someone to learn a new skill, hone an old one and definitely provide them with a life long hobby.
An additional incentive is that all the workshop prices will be rising next year but vouchers bought this year will last for 12 months.

Monday, 26 November 2012

Hectic But Happy

Eliza Simpson

It has been an eventful morning with a surprising amount of visitors and a really long phone call to  Yell.com. I wonder how many times I have to say that I have got no money and that I am tied into a contract etc before they realise that I am not going to say yes right away. Even though in his defence he came up with some very good ideas that I think would be great for the gallery. I think that there are some definite possibilities. I'll have a good chat with my 'business partner' and I might go for it next year.
If you want to keep people interested then you have to give them free stuff. Well, that's not exactly true but you get the general idea. There will be offers available via the website so it will be worth your while checking in with it from time to time. Especially if you are planning to do a workshop.

It has been a busy few days with lots of teaching and driving. I am mobile again which is a good thing.
I always feel bad when I don't write a blog but I haven't got the skill to magic time out of nowhere.
I have spent the day doing the biggest amount of choredom that I have done in a very a long time.
That being said there isn't really much news, other than Mark Lloyd's exhibition is entering its last week. Please come and see it before it is gone.
The artist featured in todays blog is the ceramacist Eliza Simpson, she will be showing some of her new pieces in the Purbeck Collectives Winter Exhibition.
You should make sure you see it as they are really gorgeous.

Thursday, 22 November 2012

The Saga Continues!

Heather Gibbons

Having to do some pretty shoddy DIY in order to make my internet work, I am disappointed to have to report, it's still rubbish! Why is the ethernet cable that they supply never long enough?
Swanage is quaint and lovely but come on BT drag us into the 21st Century it's what we all want and need.
My internet is so slow at the moment that I can't update my website because the connection times out mid upload.
Guess what one of the main jobs that I need to get done sooner rather than later is?
Instead of being sat in front of a computer I am going to get on and do some more work for my exhibition.
The internet has just disappeared again. There's a big red bar across the top of my screen that tells me this when I am writing.

If you are at a loss for things to do this weekend there is the fantastic Swanage Comedy Club event at the Legion on Saturday night. You could make a day of it, visit me, fish and chips for tea, finished off with some comedy!
I hope to mobile again next week as that is greatly hindering my entire life. Minty the mini is being taken off the road for bad behaviour. I will be fixing her up and then moving her on. That does make me sad but we have had a good innings.

Remember that Mark Lloyd is still at the gallery for a bit longer so do come and see his excellent exhibition.
I will be featuring pictures from the people involved in the next exhibition over the next few days to give you an idea what will be on show in the PAC Winter Exhibition. Today is the very intuitive painter Heather Gibbons. This is my personal favourite.

Monday, 19 November 2012

Down Get Down, Get Up!

Happy Monday! Happy Monday? I'm not sure, but I hope that you are having a good one. I have spent the morning trying to wade through admin. It's like dancing in a swimming pool. You can just see my arms waving about and you aren't sure whether I am drowning or not.
Big businesses are surely going to be the downfall of little businesses. They are inflexible and not that helpful.
Just keep taking my money and give me a rubbish service in return. Thanks for that.
Imagine if I did that.......people buy a painting and when they come to collect it I say thanks very much for the cash would you like this shoe box instead? No it's not what you paid for but it is what I have decided to give you anyway.
I'd be closed in a matter of days. But apparently that is what big businesses do.
My internet is saying that it isn't currently working which is great as I am half way through writing this. I have changed wifi channels several times today and they are all running at a jurassic pace. Which means so slowly that it is trapped in rock and may only speed up if a fossil hunter unearths it and shows it the light of day.
Enough moaning, and let's have some things to look forward to. Do come and see Mark Lloyd's show before it goes. It will not be wasted journey I promise.

Mark Lloyd

The Purbeck Art Collective will be my last exhibition of the year and it is shaping up to be a nice diverse exhibition. If you are struggling to think of that unique gift for someone then you best make sure that you visit this exhibition. The prices will allow for every budget and you must support local artists and crafts people as they are producing bespoke pieces that you will not find in any High Street shops. Although I am technically on the High Street.

Saturday, 17 November 2012

People Are Back in Swanage....Phew!

It's That Time Already!

I am happy to report that people are ignoring the fact that the ferry is off and are once again setting foot in Swanage. Phew! A steady flow of people through the door today, Mark will be pleased.
I have spent the morning doing my favourite thing, well it's on the list of my favourite things. I have had a good clean and organise. When space is at a premium you have to keep on top of the cleaning. Especially when you now are looking after a whole collection of paintings.
I have got more work going today which is good. I am aiming for having absolutely nothing here other than Stephen's and my own work.
I thought I was going to share something interesting with you but apparently the site is temporarily down, maybe on Monday.
I have been noticing that all of the local businesses are already fully decked out for Christmas. I suppose I will have to follow suit. I can't believe that it is here already.
I have got to buy a new tree as I broke the last one trying to cram it into the box. I've had a black one but this year I think that I am going to go for white.
I've found these awesome baubles that are perfect but they are a bit pricey. But I think they are worth it.

I am getting plenty of enquiries about iPad art apps. If you are the proud new owner of an iPad well done! Whilst I am very happy to share my knowledge I do run classes and they are very reasonably priced. If you do the maths, if five people take 30 minutes per person of my time that's wages I'm losing out on.
I am going to have to be more business minded if I am to survive. It shall be my New Years Resolution. You all know how I relish being tough and business like! NOT!

Friday, 16 November 2012

There's New and There's News

Well, I will readily admit that it is caffeine that is holding me together today. I am very tired having travelled two hundred miles in under 12 hours. With approximately four hours sleep.
Just as well I managed to open on time as I actually had an important meeting with the artist Stephen Bishop.
You will be hearing a lot about him in the next 12 months, quite a lot of it will be from me but no doubt  he will be talked about by others.
He will be exhibiting with me next year and I will have a permanent collection of his work at the gallery. I've said it before and I will say it again he is one to watch. One day people will start listening to me and they will get (buy) whilst the getting is good (moderately priced).
It won't be long before the number of noughts at the end starts to increase. Don't say I didn't warn you, because I did.
I have a thick wedge of solicitors notes to read and I am blogcrastinating big time. I have to respond when I have read them and I have had them for a week.
Read 'em and weep comes to mind. So I am off and will be back in touch when I have actually read them.
I hope that you have a good weekend planned. I am going to making several phone calls to family and friends as I have been promising to do so for some time now and I am sorry to say I haven't managed it yet.
The picture is by Stephen Bishop I want to get you thinking about his work.

Tuesday, 13 November 2012

Art Rage Us!

Wow! I hardly had time to get through the door before I was asked essentially 'What's the point of art?'.
I then proceeded to have in depth art conversation. To say I wasn't ready would be an understatement. I produce art because I feel the need to. It is something that I feel compelled to do. I have famine and feast moments in terms of the production as it is reliant on how busy the gallery keeps me.
I was asked what is your work trying to say? Some of it is trying to say something and some of it is trying to say nothing. Specifically what it is trying to say is hard to pin down. (Especially before coffee number three)

Does the viewer need to understand the back story in order to like it? Two years in and I am going to say a definitive no! Some people are interested but I don't think it will change someones mind from dislike to like. I think they will gain a better appreciation of the work and understand it.
I think if they have made their mind up to own it they are generally interested in finding out more about the artist and their process.

There are lots of artists whose work I am impressed by, the technical skill, use of colour etc but would I want to own it (even if I had the money) not necessarily.
That is what art education is for though. I remember at 14 my favourite artists were all working in a very representational way. Depicting things as they actually are/were. I thought abstract art was an abomination created by people who could not really draw or paint. That is fact!

Then I grew up, and saw things differently and was taught how to see to a certain extent. Now very rarely am I moved by figurative art that accurately depicts life as it is. It has something to do with not being able to bring anything of myself to it. That it gives me too many answers and doesn't ask enough questions.

If you paint something that is photo realistic what is it you are trying to say? Look at me I am very skilled technically and I can paint something so well, it looks exactly like the photograph that I copied from. And......................?
I'm just saying.

Anyway, I like art and that's all, some of it more than others. I am guessing it's exactly the same for you! If you would like to discuss the topics raised in this blog any further then please free to ask the questions asked to any artists that you know. However, that does not include me!

Monday, 12 November 2012

Ferry Across From Sandbanks!

DO NOT be put off by the fact that the ferry isn't running until December. It is annoying I know but the road to Swanage is still open and despite the horror stories in the press I did the return trip to Poole on Saturday in virtually the same amount of time that it takes via the ferry.
It is disappointing that business owners in Swanage have been thwarted by weather, the Olympics and now road works. It was a tough summer for many as visitor numbers were down. Now we are being hit again.
The idiocy of planners in this area! Would it be too much to ask that they liaise with each other every so often.
Well, I think that the fact the ferry was off on Saturday did impact on how many people came to the PV which was a shame because the work looks stunning.
We found out that Mark has been featured in the Saatchi New Sensations of 2012 website. Click the link to find out more.
This is good news indeed for Mark he works hard and he deserves it.
I also found out that Josh Hollingshead who exhibited with me in September one the prize that he was nominated for and is currently being exhibited at Pallant House.

I told you he was one to watch. It will be appearing at the gallery in February so please come along and see it for yourself.
Date for your diary, Saturday 8th December will be the start of the Purbeck Collective's Winter Exhibition. It promises to have something for everyone. Join us for mulled wine and mince pies.

Friday, 9 November 2012

What's Not To Like?

If you haven't already done so please 'Like' the gallery Facebook Page

Guess who I have been on the phone to today? I bet you can't guess? Well I had to phone the lovely people at BT as my whole internet situation has become intolerable.
It is still not right and is causing me grief as it keeps disappearing when you least want it to. Which for me is all the bloomin' time!
I had people come into the gallery today who asked me where the naked dummies that were in the window had gone. I think that is genius.
Since I started writing this the internet has dropped out twice. So they have done an exceptional job of fixing the problem.
I am tempted to go back to my old hub which was far more reliable.
Mark Lloyd's exhibition starts tomorrow so if you fancy popping along to the Private View then please do.
If a big breakfast sets you up for the day why am I hungry? It's the big questions that fascinate me.
The gallery will be open a little later tomorrow as I have to get the PV organised and as I am without a car again, I have to rely on the kindness of others.
Can't have a PV with no booze or nibbles.
Going again now before the internet runs away again as it is threatening to do!

Thursday, 8 November 2012

Mark Lloyd - Dystopia Is Here and It's Now!

Mark Lloyd

Another eventful day at the gallery. I really wish that I had got a webcam up to record the reactions of people to Robin Beuscher's work. It would have made hilarious viewing, if you didn't see them then I am sorry to say that they have now been replaced by Mark Lloyd's fantastic new exhibition.

I now realise the full potential of the windows in between shows and I will be looking for  artists to give me window fillers for in between exhibitions.
There will only one criteria and that is that the work must be eye catching and preferably provocative.
I want to get people talking and challenge their perceptions of what art is.
I am not expecting people to love it, I do want them to find it interesting and if it gets them talking about it then it has done it's job.

After several false starts with hanging Marks very first painting it all went up like a dream.
I have probably told you that I hate drilling holes in my walls, needless to say I still do. I am however an excellent filler inner, and sander and then painter.
He is very happy with it and so am I. Let's exhibit some great art and I'll settle for that.

Tuesday, 6 November 2012

The Internot As I Like To Call It!

Welcome to blog no. 514. I hope it finds you well. I am having to write my blog at home because my internet connection at work is so shockingly poor that I can't do anything.
I did mention that I am between shows at the moment and Robin Beuscher was kind enough to lend me two sculptures to put in the windows.
They are a bit controversial and very eye catching and I think that it is definitely going to get people talking.
My only wish is that I had a camera set up to record peoples reactions. I have seen double takes, people walk all the way past and come back.
I've included 'Red Tape Man' in this blog and you'll get an idea of what I am talking about. I think it's hilarious. You judge for yourself. If only all bureaucrats had to dress like this, it would make all of the rules and regulations so much easier to swallow.
New show up on Thursday, it's always exciting putting up new exhibitions especially when it's a first for the artist.
I hope that you can make it.
I have promised to select a winner from my new 'likes' from the gallery Facebook page, who will be the  proud owner of a piece of my work. Due to the technical difficulties I am experiencing at the gallery I have not been able to post a picture of the prize. Due to this fact I am going to delay choosing a winner until I have posted the picture.
All you have to do is 'like' the gallery Facebook page and you are in with a chance to win.

Monday, 5 November 2012

No Bloggy and a Very Sick Moggy!

Don't blame me, blame my erratic internet connection. So the textiles show has finished but that does not mean that the gallery is not full of exciting new images. Well technically, it isn't full as of yet but give it a day or two and there will be some stunning new work on display.
It is Mark Lloyds show that starts on Saturday we will take our time hanging it because it will be his first solo exhibition at the gallery.
It is going to be edgy and challenging and I should imagine it will raise a few eyebrows but that's exactly what I hope it does.
There will be those that won't like it as it isn't a beautifully painted seascape but art is not all about beautifully painted seascapes is it?
My aim has always been to champion the work of an eclectic mix of practitioners who work in a range of media and work with diverse subject matter.
I do not want to play it safe and provide Dorset with yet another gallery full of 'nice' art. That isn't to say that I don't want to show fantastically produced beautiful art because I do.
But every now and again I want to push a few buttons, get a few tongues wagging and fulfil my role as a curator/educator.
My rant is over come and see for yourselves. That is why I am here.

My few days off didn't happen as Merlin my cat decided he'd like a mini break at the veterinary hospital! Nice of him I thought, slightly more pricey than my planned visit to Cornwall. £156 a night which did include bed and breakfast, some interesting fur shaving and a drip. (At the Vets) I do curse the day the black cat came to town. He may well bankrupt me way before the double dip recession that we are in or out of depending on what you believe.

My gallery windows are going to be looking interesting let me know what you think if you pass them!