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

My dad used to say, ‘always make sure you look presentable because you never know who you might bump into’ and this week his words of wisdom were much appreciated when I was trying to decide what to wear and decided to go the extra mile and opted for ‘smart’ rather than ‘smart casual’. My husband’s grandfather, Hector Duff, had invited me to the Joint Ex Servicemen’s Association luncheon at the Empress. He just said ‘Would you be able to come?’ and I said ‘Yes of course, I’d be delighted’. That’s pretty much all I knew about it except that Colleen Corlett and her husband David had also been invited, so I hope you can imagine my surprise to find myself on the top table with, amongst others, Colleen, David, Hector, the Mayor and Mayoress of Douglas and sat next to the former Lieutenant Governor, Major General Sir Laurence New! I was very surprised and felt very honoured indeed to be in such company. It was a very enjoyable occasion and I was greatly impressed to discover that Sir Laurence has his own website and is very ‘techno-savvy’. Of course the first thing I did when I got home was to look it up and I have to say it really is a remarkable and fascinating site, very comprehensive and with some great photographs on it. The website is “A Pictorial History of the 4th and 7th Royal Tank Regiments” and can be found at

For those who might not know, this year is the 100th anniversary of the Battle of the Somme which took place between 1st July and 18th November 1916. More than one million men were wounded or killed, making it one of the bloodiest battles in history. As it was Remembrance Sunday yesterday, I thought it very appropriate to use one of Paul Parker’s new pictures of the War Memorial on Douglas Promenade as the featured image this week, just one of his new works which will be at The Sayle Gallery from 25th November.

With the greatest respect for all those who have given their lives in battle; we will remember them.

minilogoI popped into the Isle Gallery at Tynwald Mills on Saturday to have quick look at the new exhibition “Myths and Morphons” which features Artists Colette Gambell, Anna Clucas (who has a beautiful new baby boy, Vinnie – Congratulations Anna!), Julie Roberts and Simon Park. There are some very nice pieces but it’s easy to get distracted by Simon’s large photographic works which are really engaging. I’m not sure where I would have the space for one and I kind of think you would need two or three to really make it work as it’s very much a ‘collection’ – but that’s just my personal opinion – and they are lovely if you have the right space for them. There’s every good reason to head to Tynwald Mills at this time of year so don’t forget to call in while you are there for a look and to say hello to the ArtReach ladies.

The other reason I called into The Isle Gallery was to pick up Christmas Cards from Nicola Dixon to give to the winner of the Facebook competition, France Gayon, who lives in Paris! Great to see local work heading further afield. Nicola was teaching at the Gallery on Saturday – here is a clip of her in action 🙂

minilogoIf you missed out on Nicola’s Christmas cards I am currently running another give-away on Facebook of Jeremy Paul’s cards. I’ve asked people to put a wild animal or bird in the comments that you’d like to see Jeremy paint (this is so that I know you have entered the competition). Jeremy has replied to lots of the entries already about what he is or isn’t likely to paint so it’s worth a look if only to see what we can hope to see soon!

minilogoWhile I was out and about I collected the Christmas Cards from Jeremy and called into Grenaby Studios (Ballabeg) to see the space now that Claire Pearse (Element.isle) has moved across the yard to the Studio next to Graham Hall. Grenaby is a really lovely location with a great creative vibe about it and well worth a visit – if you haven’t discovered it yet you can see the map of where it is HERE . You’ll be sure of a warm welcome even if you’re just stopping by for a mooch. Claire was telling me that it’s getting busier and busier as more people find out about it and that last Friday was their busiest to date – she was at the Studio until 2am re-stocking for the Saturday!

Graham has been busy too – we were talking about some of his sculptural pieces (which are to die for) and I had the privilege of having a look through his sketch book which holds all kinds of promising gorgeousness. As he says though, they are very time consuming and with demand as it is at present he’s been busy fulfilling orders. Here’s a video of him at work on a recent piece which is still available in the shop at Grenaby (if you’re quick…).

minilogoI’ve had a busy week all in all! On Friday night I went to the Preview of ‘Creature Cornucopia’ at the Hodgson Loom Gallery (Laxey Woollen Mills). This is a joint exhibition of Meriel Burden’s paintings and Erica Kermode’s sculptures, as ever beautifully curated by Julia Smyth. I was very pleased indeed to at last meet Meriel in person. Meriel has a page on the Directory but up until Friday we had only communicated by email! I was also really delighted to see how beautifully her pictures ‘sing’ when viewed in person. As with most non-digitally produced art, the internet does not do it justice. I was not at all surprised to see that 3 of my favourite paintings of hers had been snapped up before I arrived.

Erica Kermode’s sculptures, particularly of the African animals, are also lovely to see ‘in the flesh’. I had a lovely chat with Erica about different types of clay which was very interesting and I am very tempted to have a go at one of her workshops. I feel that I’d probably be better at ‘making’ something that trying to draw or paint something. After my Frida Khalo efforts I know you’ll all be hoping that to be the case! One of these days I might have a go….

Creature Cornucopia is on until 3 December (which is handing in date for the annual competition, this year with the theme of  ‘TIME’).

minilogoDates for your Diary

THE LAST WEEK, UP TO 19 NOVEMBER AT THE MANX MUSEUM ‘Islands and Bridges’ The Art of Roger Dean.  If you haven’t been to see this yet but have been meaning to you’ve only got this week left!

On now – Autumnal Show – Sheena Graham-George at Studio 42

On now to 20 November – Colleen Corlett “Answering the Need to Create” at the Sayle Gallery

On now – 20 November – The Alchemists Photography Exhibition at Noa Bakehouse

On now – 27 November – The Isle Gallery : Myths and Morphons

On now through November – IOM Arts Council Loan Collection at the Erin Arts Centre

On now to 3 December – Creature Cornucopia Preview at the Hodgson Loom Gallery

10, 17 & 24 November 2016 at The Isle Gallery – Hand Printed Fabric & Surface Pattern Design – 7pm – 9.30pm

12 & 19 November at The Sayle Gallery – Ceramic Giftware Workshops – Adult and Family sessions

17 November – Studio 42’s Christmas Show preview 6.30 – 8.30pm

22 November – Creative Network AGM – 7pm – Noa Bakehouse

24 November – Paul Parker’s Exhibition Preview at The Sayle Gallery

26 November – Katy Mitchell’s open Studio at Lower Bishopscourt Farm (with mulled wine…. mmmmmm)

1 December – Artist Networking Event at The Sayle (tbc).

minilogoHere’s this week’s round-up of pictures sourced from Social Media. Enjoy!

Have a great week!


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Isle of Man Art News – 14 November 2016