After a relatively quiet January, February has burst onto the scene with two great art events over the weekend; the prize presentation event of the open art competition with the theme of ‘Light’ at the Hodgson Loom Gallery, and the preview of the new show by Helen Hughes at Isle Contermporary.

The Hodgson Loom Gallery had a record number of entries this year and gallery manager and curator, Julia Ashby Smyth, had a heck of a job to fit it all in. As ever, she did a tremendous job and everyone seemed to have their work displayed to best advantage. There were some stunningly good pieces of work and I will dedicate a further post to this soon with all of the winners and runners up in each of the different categories, however, huge congratulations go to the overall competition winner, Matthew Kerruish who incredibly is just 15 years old! What a fantastic accomplishment. Hopefully Matthew will carry on with his artistic endeavours and become a leading talent here on the island in years to come.

On Sunday afternoon I popped along to the preview of Helen Hughes’ new solo show at Isle Contemporary, Tynwald Mills. I left feeling inspired to start drawing and painting again. Hopefully I will be able to find some time! I did a little walk around video of a few of her pieces which you can see here but I would urge you to go and see it in person and take time to study how the paint has been applied and techniques used as it’s really a joy to see.

Phil Kneen has been busy doing what Phil Kneen does best (in my opinion anyway), his portrait photography. The Gallery magazine cover photo is of talented singer song-writer Mae Challis, a keen photographer herself (and not too shoddy at it either).

In an ‘out-take’ post Phil said that it was very last minute with the shots needing to be delivered to the magazine the same day, so he asked Mae to pick up the brightest roll of wallpaper she could find which he taped up in his hallway. He had so little space to work in he acutally had to stand in the broom cupboard! Great job though to all involved – I love the way it’s turned out.

Janet Lees has been busy creating poetry films using her newly learned technology skills. Here is one of her latest creations.

And Jeremy Paul has refreshed his website and it’s looking great. Check it out here. I thought I’d share his penguin pictures – it is the weather for it after all.

Sarah Hendy posted up that they are welcoming applications from locally based visual artists who would like to represent the Isle of Man at this year’s Festival Interceltique de Lorient in Brittany.

Artists will exhibit alongside selected artists from each of the Celtic nations at this international event which attracts over half-a-million visitors annually to celebrate our Celtic culture and heritage.

For more information and further details on how to apply, contact Sarah Hendy at – entries close on Friday 28th February.

The Isle of Man Art Society’s Easter Exhibition will be upon us before we know it. After a couple of years in Onchan at The Village Walk, this year the show will be at St. Ninian’s Lower School (near Signpost Corner).

It’s fantastic to see local enterprises collaborating and I particularly love the new packaging Grose Design has produced for Little Tree Soaps. I think you’ll agree, it looks really professional. If you haven’t tried the soaps before I can highly recommend them and they make fantastic, plastic-free, lightweight gifts if you’re after something local to send off-island.

Artist Anya Jackson posted up that she has finished her third and final mural at Bristol Galleries (pic on the left) and the picture on the right is of rugs called ‘Ana Jaks’ which should now be available for sale (not sure where though). Check out her website for more – and make sure you put your sunglasses on! It’s like walking into summer.

Huge congrats to Juan Moore – he recently got the opportunity to provide paintings for props in HBO’s latest season of True Detective, and is now able to share these paintings that were made into old school D&D covers that were used on the show. He extended his thanks to @lyndaspropshop for the opportunity, and said his inner 12 year old was over the moon!

Mike Kewley, best known for his inspiring Mindfulness courses and workshops, picked up a paintbrush recently saying that it’s been almost 20 years since he painted, but once upon a time his aim was go to Art College. Having been to Laura Espinosa Moon’s Stormy Days Winter Painting Workshop he says he has found his love of painting again. If this is your first painting in 20 years Mike then don’t stop! We want to see more.

There are a few new pages on the Directory – check out Graham Rider, Janine Skelly and Katharine Watling.

Jo Corkish recently dropped me an email to highlight an opportunity for artists which is currently being advertised via the Isle of Man Government Procurement Portal. The Clerk of Tynwald’s Office is seeking quotes from artists for an official portrait, in oils, of the Speaker of the House of Keys.

Further information can be obtained from the advert link on the portal page. If an artist might be interested in submitting a quote they must register on the portal to obtain the full details of the work required, the closing date to do this is 12 noon 19th February; Quotes then need to be submitted by 12 noon 22nd February.

Clare Christian, President of Tynwald (Svetlana Cameron)

Here’s this week’s round up of images from social media.

That’s it for the next couple of weeks. Do remember you can subscribe to the news to get it delivered to your inbox. Just fill in the form in the sidebar.

Jane x

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Isle of Man Art News – 28 January 2019

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