What a week! I thought I was going to be busy enough with being back at work after two weeks off with catching up to do as there always is and then I opened my personal email to find an invitation to interview Roger Dean! I could hardly believe it and actually typed out a reply saying ‘thank you very much but I’d have no idea where to start….’ and then realised that I would be mad to pass up such an amazing opportunity. Talk about getting out of your comfort zone though. I’m no journalist and have never interviewed anyone in my life so imagine my panic. In the end I went for the ‘phone a friend’ option, did some research and met Roger on Friday lunchtime just before the preview opened that evening. I need not have feared as he really is the most lovely gentleman and I will be writing up my notes (provided I can decipher them) and posting it as a separate blog in the not too distant future.
While I was at the exhibition preview on Friday evening I had a chat to Ron Berry who showed me the new special edition 3FM logo which Roger Dean has designed for the station and signed up at their new premises in Skanco Court. The Isle of Man Post Office has also officially launched a set of six stamps depicting Roger’s work and 5 of the 6 original works are on display including the specially commissioned work ‘Meeting Place’. Roger told me that he loves the Island and it sounds like he will be a fairly regular visitor in the coming months so you never know, we might be seeing more original Isle of Man inspired Roger Dean work if we’re lucky.
The exhibition itself ‘Islands and Bridges’ is a ‘must see’. This is only his seventh exhibition and a very rare opportunity to see the most fabulous display of artwork. What is immediately striking is how vivid the colours are and how the paintings seem to give off incredible energy. I’m not going to write too much here as I don’t want to repeat myself when I draft my article, but I can safely say it is well worth the visit. Entry is free and the exhibition is on until 19 November.
I did a lot of rushing around on Friday as I was double booked with the Ashgrove Marketing Competition results and prize giving being on at the same time as the exhibition preview. Unfortunately the Directory didn’t win either its category or the ‘People’s Choice’ award sponsored by Ramsey Crookall, but having read all of the most lovely comments on the Directory entry on the Ashgrove Marketing FB page I feel like a winner anyway. Thank you to everyone who left a comment and voted; there will be other opportunities to help raise the profile of the visual arts on the Island I am sure and congratulations to all of the winners who did a really great job.
When Graham Hall isn’t busy tagging basking sharks (which is fascinating by the way) he’s a bit of a dab-hand at wood turning. Working out of Grenaby Studios he has some serious machinery and, I only realised the other day, can offer workshops and one-to-one tutorials. Below are the pictures of the results of one of his workshops which I’ve kindly been given permission to put in the news so that you can see what you might be able to achieve. If you’re interested in having a go you can contact Graham for more details via his page on the Directory.
Also working out of Grenaby Studios is Simon Capelen. He’s been making the most wonderful table with Graham out of a fallen elm tree. I’ve been watching progress on the Grenaby Studio’s FB page and the craftsmanship is clear to see. Grenaby is a little hub of loveliness near Ballabeg with Element.isle and Juliet Petrarulo also being based there. I know Claire from Element.isle is closed presently and spending some time with her family over the school holidays but I expect that it will be buzzing again down there in a few weeks.
Svetlana Cameron’s picture, ‘George’ conte on paper, 45 x 35 cm, will be part of the Society of Graphic Fine Art annual open exhibition 3-15 October in the Menier Gallery.
And finally, as I have to stop somewhere and can’t possibly include everything that I wan’t to or else I’d be here until next Sunday writing this, don’t forget to check in with what MakeMarket at the Douglas Market Hall and the Isle of Architecture are up to.
Dates for your Diary:
On now through to 19 November – Manx Museum – ‘Islands and Bridges’ The Art of Roger Dean
On now – Hodgson Loom Gallery – Summer Symphony of Silk
On now – The Isle Gallery – Juan Moore’s ‘Odd Days’
On now – Studio 42 – Summer Show (Win Norton and Catherine James)
On now – The Sayle Gallery – Art in the Park Display / Rob Smith / Celine Appleyard / David Metaxas
23rd August – Children’s Workshop at the Isle Gallery – Treasure Island
24th August – Children’s Workshop at the Isle Gallery – Nature Prints
27th August – Silver Willow Studio – Clay sculpture workshop
6th September – Oil Painting – Seascapes at the Isle Gallery
8th September – The Isle Gallery – start of a 6-8 week course of printmaking for adults
7th October – Paul Parker at the Braaid Hall – Watercolour Painting (5 days on light and tone over 5 weeks)
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Have a great week!
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