Magical Island at The Isle Gallery

A new exhibition is to take place at The Isle Gallery, St Johns.  Featuring the work of Rosie Wood BA(Hons) and Colby artist Celia Kay the theme of the exhibition is  “Magical Island”.  The preview will be held on Sunday 22nd April from 2.00pm to 4.30pm and will continue until Sunday 10th June 2018.  For gallery opening times and further information please contact The Isle Gallery at or call 01624 801751.

For Celia, painting has always been an ongoing drive and has exerted a strong pull on her thinking and creativity.  She has long felt a deep bond with nature through the surrounding landscape, footpaths and waterways and counts herself very fortunate to be living on an island of such unspoilt beauty.

The inspiration for this exhibition is “Magical Island”.  From tiny quiet corners of hedgerows, flowers and seeds through the mystical, celtic atmosphere of our glens and waterfalls through to the wide and ever changing skies.   With the constantly shifting cloud and light patterns, skies have also held a deep fascination throughout Celia’s painting career and will probably be explored further in time to come.

Rosie graduated in 2016 with a BA (Hons) in Fine Art, her work is continually drawn back to the world around her and the strong connections she has with this Island. She searches out texture, colour and form. Her eye is honed to the small unexpected elements that are overlooked by many and finds beauty in unexpected places. Small details in a landscape intrigue her more than a full vista and she attempts to portray these details to others through her work. 

For this exhibition Rosie’s work spans a number of disciplines including photography, pen, acrylic ink and printmaking. All are borne out of observations made from nature, the structure of rock formations, patterns discerned in a tangle of seaweed on the beach, ivy twining around a tree, winter branches swaying in the wind, shapes worn into rocks by repeated tides, expressions of time frozen, never the same, never repeated. 

In his BBC Four programme Art out of Nature the Art Historian Dr James Fox stated that

“Art makes the familiar seem unfamiliar, seeing the world in a different way, finding beauty in a world we often take for granted. Art is everywhere, all we need to do is go out into nature and find it. “ 

We have an abundance of nature on our Island home so go out, look a little closer and find the magic. 


Mapping Hi-Zex Island

Mapping Hi-Zex Island

On the first day
we viewed the island from above:
a lightning flower flung across the skin of the sea
under the burning eye of the sun.

On the second day, we approached it from the water,
observing aspects of permanence –
three years and four months an island now,
its shape shifting between evening and morning.

On the third day we walked it, measured its synthetic
drumlins, its rope beaches, its tightly woven coves,
weighed the miles of clouded water beneath our feet.
Earth of a kind. Sea of a kind.

On the fourth day we went down to meet
this land mass in its own twilight. Ghost nets reached out
to finger our hair, calling us to the mausoleum
of the island’s rusted underbelly.

On the fifth day, we saw the ocean swarm –
angelfish and rainbow runners twisting through drifts
of polymer confetti that playact as food,
feeding the very body of our island.

The sixth day we spent logging life.
A shore crab. Clams. An albatross in flight
off the western peninsular. We collected old eel traps,
scraps like pastel coloured sharks’ teeth

with which to make a necklace for the children.
We bowed our heads under the weight of that night’s stars.
And when the seventh dawn came,
we saw our work was done.

Discovered by Captain Charles Moore, Hi-Zex Island is made up of fishing gear, nets and buoys believed to have come from the 2011 tsunami that devastated parts of Japan.



Isle of Man Art News – 26 March 2018

Wow Wow Wow! I know I get excited about art pretty much on a weekly basis but every now and again something comes along that just knocks your socks off. The new show at The Sayle Gallery is one of those shows. ‘3 Contemporaries’ is an exhibition of artwork from the family and private collections of Norman Sayle, David Fletcher and David Gilbert, three men dedicated to their art and teaching and sadly no longer with us. The exhibition has been put together to honour and give recognition to these three contemporaries; friends, colleagues and exponents of contemporary art on the Isle of Man. It is simply glorious. That they were all friends to me seems evident from their work; whilst the styles are different there is a harmony that makes the whole ‘glow’ with warmth and there is a camaraderie in how the pieces happily rub shoulders with each other – three amazing talents that the Island should rightly be proud of. 

Alongside these works are paintings by Eileen Schaer, a fabulous artist herself, Eileen was married to David Fletcher; Ian Coulson who was taught by Norman Sayle and Nicola Dixon, who spent some of her younger years with the Gilbert family, making both art and happy childhood memories. Well done Carola, Christian and everyone who helped in curating such a wonderful and important show.


As if that wasn’t excitement enough for one evening, a new show also opened at the Hodgson Loom gallery on Friday night. ‘Saltmother’ is the work of artists Carola Colley and Beatrice Lacey and poets Usha Kishore and Paul Quayle. Carola’s work is inspired by Usha’s recent collection ‘Night Sky Between the Stars’ and her ‘Translating the Divine Woman: Syamala Dandaka’, a translation from the Sanskrit with M Sambasivan. You may remember I published another of their wonderful collaborations a while ago ‘The Bones of Time‘.  Again, this is another wonderful show, beautifully curated as usual by Julia Ashby Smyth and one which I will need to revisit to have time to fully appreciate the words as well as the images. It was so busy (with lots of new faces I’m glad to report) that as usual I spent most of my time gassing and not enough time appreciating.

And then there’s even more to see coming up this weekend! The IOM Art Society Easter Exhibition is on from Thursday 29th March to Monday 2nd April. Always a great show many of these works are for sale and it’s an amazing opportunity to pick up some very affordable local work. We’re spoiled for choice this Easter! There’s so much to see and do so please do go along and see some of these shows and support our local artists.



In competition news, Mike Starkey posted up that he was really pleased to get through the first stage of judging for the Royal Academy of Arts Summer Exhibition. He’s off to London soon for the judges to view his painting…. fingers crossed. This isn’t the one he’s entered but I spotted it last night and thought it was particularly lovely.

Michael Starkey

Julie Collins has also had recent success with this beautiful picture “I stood at Stranraer in a red dress”. To be exhibited at the Royal Institute of Painters in Water Colours, Mall Galleries, London. 6-21 April, she reported that she is delighted this painting has sold before the exhibition has opened. Not very surprising really 🙂

Julie Collins

Job News!

The Erin Arts Centre is looking for a student/graduate who is eager to gain experience at managing an Arts Centre who has some knowledge of Music and the Arts in general. The position would be part-time and they hope for the new role to commence around June or July this year. Please contact John Bethel at the Erin Arts Centre if you or you know someone who may be interested! or 835858.

Also, many congratulations to Emma Callin who will soon be taking up her new position as Head of Villa Marina Gaiety Theatre and the Arts. Emma has lead the Arts Council team in their support of Arts Council members since 2007. She has provided guidance and support to many Island artists, creatives and arts organisations over the years. The Arts Council posted up that “it is without a doubt that Emma will be missed and we wish her the best of luck in her new role! As such a position as the Arts Development Manager is now vacant and you can apply here!”

News Shorts

Martin Vaughan

The IOM Drawing Club tickets which last month sold out in 24 hours sold out in a staggering 6 hours last week! Awesome, and well done Kim Graziano for starting this very successful group. Lovely to see that she now has support for this from the Isle of Man Arts Council too. Great news.

Lots of Arts Council info to share this week… check out the second blog post about Alice Quayle: Read it here


Mae Challis has published a new blog post on her photography adventure – love how the colour sings in this great photo.

Mae Challis (of her friend Tom)

Super talented I thought I’d share this latest song of hers as well…


And a bit wrinkled from being stuffed in my handbag but just though I would share the article about the Directory that was published in the Manx Independent last week which Mike Wade kindly organised – thanks Mike!


Studio 42 has been in the wars after Storm Emma and the Beast from the East made the shop ‘uneasily breezy’ for a while with a broken window. Now all sorted, gallery owner Eben Carswell has an awesome programme lined up for this year:

“First up, based in Zurich and hot off her work being shown in the Saatchi Gallery, is Julie Anne Denton…
or that isn’t quite so… for she is now also Dr Julie Anne Denton having successfully completed her phd studies.

We are very lucky to be starting the year off with her startling glass pieces and I look forwards to telling you more and lending you an open invite to the preview night of, ‘INNER SPACE’ in 3 weeks time on Thursday 12th April, 6.30-8.30pm.

All very welcome and it will be good to catch up with you all once again to appreciate some of the best work the Island has to offer.

All being well (and hopefully that brings an end to this years weather related incidents!) we will also be bringing you Petrina Kent during the summer months and a joint autumnal show from David Byrne and Nancy Corkish.

So a top crust year in prospect to share with you as well as the usual eclectic and exciting pieces on show all through the year at Studio 42, be it from trusty stalwarts to those just beginning their quest of an artistic journey, hopefully something for everyone.”




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What’s On


On now – 29 March – Erin Arts Centre ‘Animal Kingdom’ by Dawn Kennaugh

On now – 15 April – ‘Clay Masters’ at The Isle Gallery

On now – 21 April – ‘Saltmother’ at the Hodgson Loom Gallery

On now – 22 April – ‘3 Contemporaries’ at The Sayle Gallery

On now – 5 May – ‘Crossing Open Ground’ – David Gilbert: A Retrospective – at the Manx Museum

28 March – Manx Radio 5.30pm-6pm Spotlight with Sarah Hendy

28 March – 2 April – Isle of Man Art Society Easter Art Exhibition

12 April for a season – Inner Space at Studio 42, Dr Julie Anne Denton (preview 6.30pm – 8.30pm)

15 April – Exhibition on Screen – Vermeer and his Music – Erin Arts Centre – 3pm – 4.30pm

17 April –  Richard J Parker from the Great Pottery Throwdown series 2 at the Isle Gallery for a pottery get together with a chat and some demos

5-7 May – Creative Network’s IOM Art Festival – Island Wide


Upcoming Workshops:


2 April – Mini Masters Classics – Van Gogh’s Garden, the Isle Gallery 10.00am

2 April – Classic Fairy Tales – Rapunzel (Tangled), the Isle Gallery 2.30pm

7 April – Family Easter Willow Weaving Workshop – the Isle Gallery

9 April – Ceramic Animal Moneybox – the Isle Gallery 10.00am

9 April – Art & Literature – The Gruffalo Art Workshop – The Isle Gallery 2.30pm

16 April – The Great Manx Build Up and Throw Down – 3 Day Workshop – The Isle Gallery

17 April – Silk Painting with Jean Buck 10am-4pm – IOM Art Society

26 April – Absolute Beginners in Ceramics – Night Time Course – 7pm -9.30pm 

27 April – Absolute Beginners in Ceramics – Day Time Course – 10am – 12.30pm


If you’ve got a workshop or class coming up that you would like me to share please just drop me an email: or get in touch via Facebook/Messenger.


Here’s this week’s round up of images from Social Media. Click on the pictures to view in the lightbox.


Happy Easter! There will be no art news for the next 2 weeks but I will be back on 16th April with more Arty goodness for you.

Jane x

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