There’s an expression I am sure, something along the lines of “You can take the boy out of the country but you can’t take the country out of the boy”. This weekend saw the launch of the Chris Killip exhibition at the Manx Museum and although Chris now works at Harvard University as professor of visual and environmental studies, I think this saying goes some way to expressing how his presentation came across to a packed house in the Museum’s lecture theatre on Saturday afternoon.

Chris talked with evident affection of his childhood days growing up in and around Peel, of the mischief he and his friends would get up to, of the love and support of his father and how the subjects of his work would question his genealogy in order to place him in the order of things before allowing him to take their photograph. 

On the odd occasion, Chris would forget the name of a person in a particular picture but the audience was able to come to his aid; these photographs are of people – many of whom are still alive – who people know or knew or indeed are related to. Chris’s unassuming delivery conveyed the sense of community, the friendships and rivalries, the hard work and drunken nights, what life was like when there was little money to go around and how people helped each other for no reward by giving of their time. He painted a vivid and emotive picture of life up to the early 70’s and brought back a multitude of memories for many. Chris’s love of the Isle of Man and the Manx people was both humorous and enthralling – the talk ran over by 25 minutes but no one noticed and no one cared and I for one didn’t want it to end.

The exhibition is on until 30 July 2016 at the Museum and you can buy copies of Chris’s book from the museum shop (when they are back in stock, as it completely sold out yesterday). 



minilogoBruno Cavellec has produced this great picture for the launch of Mae Challis’s cover of ‘Crazy’ by Gnarls Barkley. Here is the YouTube link for you in case you haven’t seen it yet. The video is by Dave Armstrong (DAM Productions Isle of Man). Bruno is a great music fan and the perfect person for album cover art, gig posters and the like. Remember his ‘Hot Club of Cowtown’ picture recently on FB? No? OK, here you go (any excuse to post this one up as I absolutely love it!).




minilogoThe wildlife Park is looking for someone who can make something like in this photo, wood, metal or other material (but must be weather proof) for their new Gibbon interpretation. Please call Kathleen at the Park on 693572 if you can help or know the person who can.




minilogoPetrina Kent published a new blog post last week: 

‘Even though life has incessantly thrown tempestuous waters at me, I still know that You are there. Your light shines upon the water.’  After a winter of storms and standing at ‘the end of things’ I chose to paint. This is the result. 




minilogoThe Arts Council has a new logo which I think looks much more contemporary than the old one. They also posted up about the Creative Designer of the Year 2016 competition which is aimed at young people aged 4 to 16 years old and offers the chance for students to win up to £450 for their school. Entrants are asked to present their designs landscape on a plain piece of A4 paper with their full name, school, year group and teacher’s name on the reverse side. Entries are to be submitted to Isle of Man Newspapers no later than 14th June 2016. 

Another Arts Council post which I am sure will be of interest to Artists is that Manx National Heritage is offering space for individuals and community groups to create their own exhibitions within their sites. The stipulation is that proposed exhibitions should demonstrate either strong links with MNH’s collections or celebrate Manx community, heritage or culture. Proposals are welcomed from artists, curators and all members of the public. 






minilogoThere are a couple of Adult Workshops coming up at The Isle Gallery this month; the first is “Waterfalls” which is on tomorrow, Tuesday 10th May 10.00am to 1.30pm. You will get the chance to create your own stunning Waterfall painting on canvas. No experience is necessary as you will be guided through the process. You can relax and unwind in the beautiful, light and airy gallery space and indulge your creative self. All materials are included and refreshments will be provided. The price is £49 including materials. 

The next workshop after that is “Springtime, Acrylic on Canvas” on Tuesday 17th May, 10.30am to 1.00pm. Here you can celebrate the changing seasons with their Springtime Acrylic Workshop by creating your own vibrant painting on canvas. This workshop is suitable for all levels and abilities as again, you will be guided through the process. Learn to ‘let go’ of inhibition and explore colour on canvas. All materials are included and refreshments will be provided. This price for this workshop is also £49 including materials.



minilogoJulie Collins’s water colour workshop at Brightlife was a great success. The delegates learnt about drawing, colour mixing and various watercolour techniques during the weekend. The talk about Julie’s art was also well attended on the Friday evening. If you fancy extending your watercolour skills, Julie will be running a watercolour and ink workshop at Brightlife in November. In the meantime she says she has lots of painting to get on with for various exhibitions and commissions.

Julie kindly sent me this picture for the news update:-  “Towards the Calf of Man” – watercolour on paper.

Towards the Calf of Man



minilogoThere is a lovely new page on the Directory, photographer Clint Hudson, and a couple more nearly ready to release. Here is a a round-up of some of the pictures posted on social media this last week. Enjoy.


Keep up-to-date by ‘Liking’ the Facebook Page or by ‘Following’ me on Linkedin or Twitter @manxart. You can also ‘Subscribe’ using the button top right of the screen.

Have a great week!


Isle of Man Art News – 9 May 2016