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Isle of Man Art News – 30 January 2017


The News is kindly Supported by the Isle of Man Arts Council.

Happy Chinese New Year!  Saturday marked the start of the year of the Fire Rooster. Apparently, ‘gong hei fat choy’ is the Cantonese way of saying the phrase and in Mandarin Chinese, it’s ‘gong xi fa cai’ (pronounced gong she fa tsai) but although the greeting is frequently offered at this time of the year, it actually delivers a wish for prosperity. Happy Chinese New Year is ‘xin nian kuai le’ in Mandarin, and it’s pronounced shin nee-an kwai. Useful stuff eh? I don’t have much to offer by way of local art to celebrate this event but I tracked down a couple of dragon pictures by Ellen Scott from a few years ago which are kind of Chinese.

I think 2017 must be the ‘Year of the Blog’ rather than the year of the Rooster because everyone is blogging. Grenaby Studios, Elöise White, Petrina Kent, Kirsten Penzes, Phil Kneen – and me of course – we’re all at it! Petrina and Phil are both established bloggers. Phil is doing some great work at present and in between going out on the fishing boat to document life at sea – which for most of the time he says he spends vomiting – he’s done some great land-based work. Here are a couple of his latest photos.

Whilst my favourite of the group is the one above of Tony Weir outside Noa Bakehouse – the colours, light and composition come together to create a sublime image – the one below is striking for a different reason. I think Phil is quite right to praise the skills of his makeup artist: “I think this image pays testament to Kimberley Berridge’s skills as a makeup artist – the brief was ‘Dishevelled Chic’ with a hint of substance/domestic abuse.” Model – Stephanie Bee, Makeup – Kimberley Berridge, Assistant/wardrobe – Hannah Yeowell.

 On Friday I met up with Gareth Nicholson from Manx Cancer Help to talk about their new fundraising event which he hopes will appeal to your creative side. Most Fundraising events are based around extreme sports – running, walking and personal challenges etc., but Manx Cancer Help recognise that these events don’t appeal to everyone. With so much artistic talent on the island they have decided to opt for a more creative fundraising path. CuPlas has very kindly sponsored the purchase of a thousand 5″x 5″ canvases and all they need now are professional artists, amateur artists, forgotten sketchers and future talents to take them away and create a mini masterpiece for Charity.

There are so many talented people on this Island who love painting but life has got in the way and the brushes have not seen light of day for many a long year. They need you to dig them out and get involved. If you, a family member, friend or work colleague would like to get involved please contact for a free canvas pack. You can paint it, stitch it, stick it or otherwise decorate it anyway you like. When your art work is complete you can contact Gareth on 679544 who will either collect it from you or arrange for a location for you to drop it off. If you would like to keep track of your art work, they will be setting up a gallery on their website for all the pictures to be displayed. Finally, if you would like to write a small description of your piece to accompany the online version and also to go with the piece when it’s on display, it would be really appreciated.

The message they would like you to portray comes from CEO Andrea Chambers – “Everyone is born as a Blank Canvas, paint us a picture of your passion and inspiration through life”.

Here are a few that have already been completed to give you a flavour of what you can do.

The official start date is from 1st January 2017 and the mini artworks are going to be displayed in the M&S (IOM) cafe before then selling them in an exhibition with the proceeds going to Manx Cancer Help. It’s hoped that established artists will also contribute a canvas and if there are enough these will be auctioned.

 Check out this lovely video of Gavin Carter at work….

Saturday saw the prize-giving ceremony of the Hodgson Loom open art competition and it was a great turn out with, as ever, lovely folk to talk to and plenty of drinks and nibbles for sustenance. I apologise for the quality of the photos – I just dashed around with my phone and took some (not very good) snaps, but at least it will give you an idea of the winners. And you still have another week to go and take a look at the show in person of course.

The winners and runners up were:-

Children and teens Winner: Time by Niamh Milsom
Runners up. Hickory dickory dock by Sophie Wood; Land before time by Joseph Wood; Feeding Time by Lucas Atkinson, T.A.R.D.I.S. by Cedric Heywood Lucas

Photographic Winner: Time Flies by Anne-Louise Clague
Runner up: Old Man Time by Sarah Pitts
2D Mixed Media Category Winner: The 3 Ages of a Woman/The Triple Goddess by Rebecca Odessa
Runner up: Doing Time by Charlotte Jane Henry
3D Category Winner: Space and Time by Neil Milsom
Runner up: Portal by Gavin Carter
Textile Winner: Generations: time to think of family, past and present by Colleen Corlett
Runner up: Time Triptych by Janice Rotheroe
Ceramic Winner: Time Past: Tholtan, Caragie by Niamh Kelly
Runner up: Borrowed Time by Erica Kermode
2D Winner: Time by Abby Quirk
Runner up: Time for Winter Solstice by Jenny Payne
Public Vote Winner Space and Time by Neil Milsom
Runner-up: Time Triptych by Janice Rotheroe
Overall Competition Winner: Space and Time by Neil Milsom
Runner up: Time Past, Tholtan, Caragie by Niamh Kelly.
Regarding their overall winner, comments from the judges included:  ‘Simply timeless’, ‘A piece that reflects every aspect of time whether it be transitory or marking the passage of millennia upon millennia’ and ‘A piece that made me stop and take time’.
This year’s theme will be Space (inner space, outer space, space between, no space, spaced out, spaceman, Space/time, patterned space, leave a space, negative space, silhouette, ripples, empty space, fractal space, evenly spaced, find a space, hidden place, own space, galactic space, space rocket, aliens, shoot for the moon, planets, black holes, space cadets, dimensions, over the moon, other-worldly, stars, astral bodies, rooms, astronaut, sun flares, margins, regions, allotted space, jam-packed, overcrowded, bridge the gap, tunnels, in the distance, holes, are you out of your Vulcan mind…., space between your ears, place mats, semicolon, heartbeat, Venus on a half shell, Pluto, astrolobes, telescopic, microscopic, Starship Enterprise……. and so on).

Dates for your Diary

Last few days – Hodgson Loom Open Art Competition show

On now – Western Photographic Society Exhibition at the Manx Museum

On now – 24 February – Bob Hitchin’s Digi-rama at the Erin Arts Centre

On now – 19 February – ‘4 Years On’ and ‘Thalloo as Keayn’ (Land and Sea) at The Sayle Gallery

4 February – Manx Landscapes and Seascapes at The Isle Gallery (Group Show)

9 February – Noa Bakehouse at 6pm – IOM Arts Council Pitch for Funding (tbc)

21 February – Draw Folks, Fairies & Themselves with Juan Moore at the Manx Museum (ages 8 -16 years)

23 February – Draw Victorious Vikings in Valhalla with Juan Moore at the House of Manannan (ages 8 -16 years)

Here’s this week’s round up of images from Social Media. Enjoy.

Have a great week!

Jane x

Keep up-to-date by ‘Liking’ the Facebook Page or by ‘Following’ me on Linkedin or Twitter@manxart or Instagram @manxartdirectory or Pinterest. 

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Rosie Wood – ‘4 Years On’

Rosie Wood


All human beings consist of multiple layers, different experiences built up over a lifetime; my work utilizes the broad variety of skills and techniques that I have gained interconnecting with my personal emotional expression. As I now move forward after my degree my aim is for my visual language to continue to resonate with others to create an emotional response; a reaction to both the physical side of a life by the sea and an insight of the human psyche as we journey in life.

My work is continually drawn to the world around me and the strong connections I have for this Island. My final piece for my Foundation Course was a series of textile pieces based on the fishing fleet of Peel. These were created by taking photographs of colour and texture from boats which were combined with photographs depicting the names of the fishing boats I wanted to represent. These images were transferred onto material, sewn into to add texture and then manipulated to generate a series of three dimensional vessels.



For the next two years I went on a personal journey to explore and understand the emotions I have lived with since the loss of my mother when I was sixteen. I have come to understand that what happened then has had a profound influence on the person I have become.  It was during this period that I started to use black biro as my main drawing medium. These drawings have evolved and now form an important part of my daily practice; it is an obsession as well as a form of relaxation. Some drawings are of observed shapes and textures; others are rooted deeper from within, creating organic forms that still appear that they could come from the natural world.

For my final year I moved my focus away from myself and explored how I could retain the emotional edge I had come to understand as the ‘absence of presence’ that I live with, but to extend that out to consider the journeys we all take in life in order to reach a wider audience.




I am seldom without a camera and use photography to record the world around me. Not in a conventional way as my images are rarely traditional landscapes, I seek out unexpected elements of pattern and texture that are overlooked by others. I have coined the term ‘hullscapes’ for my photographs of boats, as their weathered paint work and tide lines give the impression of seascapes or landscapes.




My final degree work took some of these photographs and modified them using a variety of approaches layering them with other images and drawings to provide an additional layer of meaning and context.

When I am experiencing a strong emotional response I find words and phrases going around in my mind, and find it cathartic to get the words out of my head and into the physical world. I find difficult to share these poems as they are so personal. Some will always remain hidden but I am learning that sharing these can also help others who are struggling with similar emotions.

To a degree my work has come full circle with my inspiration coming again from the coast and the weathering effects of the tides and seasons, but I now have a better understanding of why I am drawn to the rust and the cracks that I find. It is not a case of endeavouring to reconcile my past; it is an appreciation of how we are all weathered by the events that we encounter and the creative essence within me needing to communicate that to others. 


‘Keep Breathing’


Rosie Wood

January 2017