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Isle of Man Art News – 3 April 2017


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

What fun Friday evening was. I’ve not been to a ‘Wearable Art’ show before and decided to take along my friend Sarah for company. Neither of us had eaten and we were short on time so we called into the Terrace Chippy – a rare treat for me – and ate in the car before heading on in. It’s been ages since I’ve had a picnic in the car. There was a great turnout for the show and it really was very well organised and presented. I’d meant to take along my decent camera but had left it in Ramsey so had to go with my phone. Here’s a little clip for you (I thought the hat was particularly good).

Many of the designs represented something in particular, such as the 10 year anniversary of Rebecca House and one young lady had designed her outfit around Laxey. Another politically minded girl had selected Donald Trump as her theme and yet another design was representative of the rubbish we find on our beaches. In the case of Nicola Dixon, she had upcycled a charity find and painted it with her signature ‘Knoxy Knots’. As mentioned I ended up using my phone for the pics but at least they give you an idea of some of the fab outfits – there were professional photographers there too so no doubt at some point you will be able to see them in all their glory. Click to see the larger pictures in the lightbox gallery.

Unfortunately I didn’t make it to the opening of Alice and Julie Fayle’s show at the Sayle Gallery on Saturday evening but I did call in on Friday lunchtime to see how it was shaping up. Work was in full swing and I was very taken with some of the fabrics displayed in the embroidery hoops. I’ll have to call in this week but I’ve seen a few photographs on Facebook and heard it described as ‘refreshing’ so I’m looking forward to seeing it.

SALT QUARTERLY magazine, a publication due out later this year and the brain child of photographer Phil Kneen, is looking for contributing writers, photographers and graphic artists. This occasional publication will feature quality, contemporary photography, essays and journalism from around Europe, and beyond.

For further details or to pitch any ideas, please email only –


On the subject of writing, the guest posts I have been publishing seem to be very well received. So far I’ve been lucky enough to be able to publish articles by Eloise White, Jane Jelski, Zoe Guilford, Emma Callin, Hannah Murphy, Rosie Wood and Fiona Helleur. If you’ve missed any of them and would like to catch up you can follow this link to filter just the Guest Posts:guest-articles.

Friday 7 April is the next #ilovethisbuilding competition deadline to have your image featured in Gallery IOM in May. Send a 1mb photo with 100 words saying why you love that building to and stand a chance of winning a weekend in the beautiful Manx National Heritage cottage.


Svetlana Cameron posted up a few photos of her latest commission, Sofia. As you would expect, the quality and attention to detail are stunning.

I haven’t done a give-away or a survey for a while so, inspired by the National Joint Arts and Culture Strategy hosted by the Arts Council and Culture Vannin recently, here is the link to my new survey: Once you’ve completed it, please ‘Like’ the post and put ‘done’ in the comments –  in the original post- to be in with a chance of winning some fab new art supplies (Paper, Acrylics and 4 x Paintbrushes).


Responses from young people are of particular interest, so please share the survey with as many people aged 30 and under and their friends as you can. Responses are anonymous.

I’ve had over 40 responses so far and hopefully will get quite a few more. The early indications are interesting and I will share the results after Easter. I’d also just like to say to person who responded to the question ‘How do you hear about what’s going on in the Arts scene’ with the response ‘I receive notifications from Middle Earth, delivered by dragons’ that if they are also the person who said they have never been interested in pursuing a career in the Arts and that Arts doesn’t feature in their life and is irrelevant to how they feel, they might want to have a re-think!

There will be an Isle of Architecture lunchtime event in the Tynwald Chamber on 10 April celebrating 150 years of Manx democracy, with a potted history of the building, re-enactments of extracts from speeches and debates, personal anecdotes and music, all brought to you by historian, broadcaster and author Charles Guard and his talented friends, Caarjyn Cooidjagh, Greg Joughin and Jonathan King.

This free ‘Chamber Concert’ takes place between 1 and 2pm on Monday 10 April and anyone interested in the bits of history which are often overlooked should see for details of how to reserve tickets – places are limited and must be booked in advance as it is an all-seated event.

The event was devised by Charles Guard on behalf of Isle of Architecture: “We couldn’t have a celebration of the Island’s built environment without including Tynwald,” says Charles.  “The iconic ‘wedding cake’ building is as much part of Douglas as the Tower of Refuge, and is in daily use as the centre of our government.  I hope this concert combines the history of the building with the history of 150 years of Manx democracy, in a light hearted, entertaining way with wide appeal.”

Charles Guard

Dates for your Diary

On now – From Syria with Love Isle of Man at Noa Bakehouse

On now – The Sayle Gallery – Cut from the same Cloth – Julie and Alice Fayle

On now – Olive Wassall and Karl Garrett at the Hodgson Loom Gallery, Laxey

5 April – Sarah Hendy’s arts show ‘Spotlight’ on Manx Radio, 5.30 – 6.00pm (and every Wednesday)

6 April – REM-EMBERS EMBLAZONED – David Maddrell at Studio 42 (Preview on the 6th – 6.30pm to 8.30pm)

6 April – 7.00pm – 8.00pm – Noa Bakehouse, Contemporary Architecture Talk – Hannah Corlett

8 April – 6.30pm – 10.30pm -Adults Pot Thrown & Hand Built Ceramic Workshop for 2 – The Isle Gallery

8 April – 21 April – Easter Treasure Hunt in the Milntown Gardens, Ramsey – take the kids and Rob Jones’s Drawn Steel Through the Seasons

10 April – 1.00pm – 2.00pm – Isle of Architecture Tynwald Chamber talk

11 April – 2 May – Noa Bakehouse – ‘Around The Mountain’ by Graham Rider

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

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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Isle of Man Art News – 4 July 2016

OK, who stole summer? Seriously – what is going on – it’s 11 degrees celcius! We’ve had a couple of weeks of half decent weather and now it’s like winter. I’m writing this now, Sunday afternoon, with my fleece dressing gown over my clothes and a heater on under my desk. I’ve had to put the heating on several times in the last couple of weeks and I am desperately trying to put outfits together for work that look kind of summery but include socks and warm feet. I was far too optimistic about summer last Tuesday and left the house without a coat, so when it came to popping across the road to meet Svetlana Cameron at the Tynwald Library I had to borrow an umbrella from one of my colleagues as it kept raining on an off and was looking very unpredictable.

minilogoWhat was not unpredictable, of course, was the quality of Svetlana’s paintings. The “Laa Tinvaal” exhibition includes her latest commission of Madam President Clare Christian in St. John’s Church, Tony Brown OBE, The Lord Bishop of Sodor and Man, and other Tynwald related paintings – 6 in total. It was lovely to be able to see them up close and personal. The attention to detail is quite something else. She must be incredibly patient. The painting Laa Tinvaal, an artwork which depicts Manx dancers on Tynwald Day, has been displayed and reproduced in Australia, Canada and the United States. Later this year in October it will be displayed in a solo exhibition in London at the Mission of Rossotrudnichestvo, a Russian cultural institute which, being of Russian origin, Svetlana is understandably excited about. 

Svetlana told me each portrait has a personal element. The portrait of Clare Christian shows her with her Archibald Knox inkwell which she brought to the sittings from home; in Tony Brown’s portrait the dates on the books are of relevance – the year he was first elected as an MHK, the year he became Speaker and the year he retired. In the Rev. Robert Paterson’s portrait, the bible is his own and very special to him. It’s something you would probably never realise unless you knew the sitter or spoke to the Artist. I wonder just how many famous historical paintings there are where the story to them or an element of their production which was important at the time has been lost?

If you would like to meet Svetlana and have a chat to her, she will be at the exhibition on Friday 15th and Friday 22nd July from 11 am – to 1 pm. The exhibition is running until July 22nd from 9am- 5pm every weekday in the Tynwald Library and is open to everyone. If you don’t know where it is it’s very easy to find – just go through to doors on the Finch Road side of the building and the exhibition is in the Library just to the right.


minilogoI doubt anyone will have forgotten that it’s Tynwald Day on Tuesday this week (well certainly not us office dwellers). If you plan to go to Tynwald Fair look out for Kate Jerry and Colette Gambell at Bunscoill Ghaelgagh, St Johns (the primary school, in case you aren’t sure). They will be helping people make printed cards which should be fun. Kate, Colette and Anna (who run ‘ArtReach’ at The Isle Gallery) have just released more adult classes taking us up towards the end of the year. Do book early and go along and enjoy yourself – I know I did. If I didn’t have about a million and ten other things I need to do at present I could very easily be persuaded to have a go at some of the other classes, despite the results of my efforts last week! Other Artists to look out for at Tynwald Fair are Alice’s Illustrations, Nicola Dixon, Faye Christian Ceramics, ElementIsle, Rosie Glassey, Katy Mitchell and Graham Hall.


minilogoThe new portrait of Clare Christian set Sally Black pondering about What Makes a Portrait Great and whether or not a photograph will ever carry the same prestige as a painting. Looking at the photograph of Churchill she selected as an example I can certainly see where she is coming from in terms of it being a very justifiable medium for official portraiture. It is an excellent post and well worth a few minutes of your time. Sally has also been drawing – something she says she hasn’t done for years – but she says she’s been enjoying it and looking at the results so far, I’m enjoying it too. She’s also been painting a rock pool which is looking lovely.


minilogoThe Isle Gallery opened a new exhibition yesterday, ‘Remnants’, and exhibition of work by Vici Blackburn and Hazel Walsh. I haven’t had a chance to see this yet so I quote from from the launch blurb:

“Not for the faint hearted, this alternative collection of works challenges convention, channelling creative expression through the three dimensional form. Vici’s colourful, rugged sculptural forms offer depth and joy, capturing broken moments and memory through confident mark making and abstraction. Hazel has returned to the use of assemblage to explore the theme of 1930’s sideshow and carnivale. Her creations utilise remnants of childhood paraphenalia, combined with a strong sense of the macabre, resulting in an uneasy combination of dark and playful sculptures and mixed media pieces.”



minilogoThe other new exhibition that has opened this week is Peter Davies at The Sayle Gallery “Of time and Place”. It really is wonderful and I will be making several more visits over the next month I expect. Paul Moulton from MT TV was at the launch and talked to Peter about the exhibition and his work. I thought I was out of shot but clearly was not and I’m pretty sure that’s me you can hear cackling in the background later on. Anyway – it was great to hear what Peter had to say about his work and you get to see some of the lovely pictures on display. (Link no longer available).

Of Time and Place


minilogoIf you enjoy these news updates, please Share them with your friends and colleagues on FB and Linkedin to help raise awareness of our very talented local Artists. Finally, here is a round up of some of this week’s images on social media – enjoy.


Have a great week!


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.



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Isle of Man Art News – 27 June 2016


There’s never a week goes by without something happening in the Isle of Man art scene and this week was no disappointment with a new exhibition opening at the Hodgson Loom Gallery in Laxey at the weekend. I called in to say hello thinking the place would be packed out as there seemed to be cars absolutely everywhere, but it turned that just about everyone was at the Laxey Fair! How rude. Still, it gave me a chance to catch up with Julia Smyth and to meet the very talented Kasia Mirska, who I hope I have persuaded to have a page on the Directory.

There really are some wonderful pictures on display, from Howard Shimmin’s wildly colourful landscapes, to Kasia’s humorous renditions, Clara Nathan’s work with organic materials in muted tones and Rebecca Odessa’s thought provoking collages. It’s a good job I don’t have a picture buying budget at present as I would have been very hard-pressed to choose which to have, and would have wanted at least one of each. But don’t let that stop you – please do go along and buy, buy, buy as then our lovely artists will create yet more gorgeous work for us all to enjoy.

Click on any of the pictures throughout this post to view them in the light box.

minilogoAs I walked over to chat to Julia, she was just finishing off a little sketch in her sketchbook which was awesome to see her do with such ease and reminded me that I was shortly to face the unknown…. the Frida Kahlo workshop at The Isle Gallery that I had booked myself onto in a moment of foolhardiness a few weeks ago. Still, as promised last week, here are the results of my labour…… OK! You can stop laughing now. If anyone needs a booby prize for a competition just let me know.

I had such a fun time though that I highly recommend you book onto one of the courses available. You get plenty of help and Kate Jerry demonstrates how to go about it and takes you through the process step by step. It’s great value for money and for anyone, like me, who hasn’t tried to draw or paint anything since school, it’s a great way to be able to have a go without committing to buying lots of expensive materials when you don’t know whether you’re likely to ever give it another try. For me, however, I think I have enough to do besides the day-job at present so don’t be expecting any more masterpieces from me in the near future 😉

Here are one or two of the other creations from the workshop to give you an idea of the variety of work produced – it really goes to show how different everyone is.


minilogoYou may have noticed a couple of new posts going out this last week or so; ‘Neb and Nonsense’ and ‘Art I Own’. If you find any arty ‘nonsense’ do let me know (you can email me: and if you have original artwork by a local artist that you would be happy to share, again, please do get in touch. The idea of ‘Art I Own’ is to share pictures of work that is in private ownership which may not have been seen by the public for some time – or even at all! I’ve got a couple of Paul Parker’s pictures from 1991 that I will be sharing in the coming weeks, also one of Adam Berry’s, and others by my mum and my sister. So don’t be shy, please do take a snap and send it in. 


minilogoI debated long and hard whether or not to go to yoga last Thursday lunchtime, decided it was good for me, and so even though my heart was saying no and my head was saying yes I trotted down to the yoga studio only to find the back door locked. Undeterred at this stage, having made it so far, I headed round the front and up the stairs to find the place pretty much deserted apart from one set of clothes in the changing room. I then successfully convinced myself that it must be a private class and put the rest of my lunch hour to much better use by calling into The Sayle Gallery to see what was going on.

It was lovely to see College graduates Kirsten Penzes and Helen Tate at The Sayle. They are doing a job share in a part-time capacity which, having just finished their BA(Hons) in Fine Art, will be great experience for them. A couple of the windows at the Gallery are going to be dedicated to student work over the summer, with displays being rotated every couple of weeks. I think this is a fabulous idea to help the students gain visibility and to give them the confidence they need to take the next steps in their careers. There really has been some great work produced by the College students this year so I know you won’t be disappointed and like me, will probably find excuses to keep going back. Yoga? Well yes, maybe Mondays when the gallery is closed….

Carola Rush filled me in on some of the up-coming events at The Sayle; Peter Davies’ exhibition, ‘Of time and place’ opens on 1 July and runs right through to 31 July. The press release reads: “Peter has enjoyed a long career spanning five decades in the arts. Born in Moreton on the Wirral peninsula, he was educated at Wallasey School of Art, Birmingham College of Art and Birmingham University, and latterly served as Principal of Bournemouth and Poole College of Art and Design.

Throughout this time he has produced a richly diverse body of work, inspired by his fascination with a sense of time and place, encompassing paintings, drawings, studio pieces, illustrations, collages and prints. Much of this is produced on location, notably around England, France and the Isle of Man, where he records the prevailing weather conditions, seasons or time of day, capturing the unique spirit of a moment in time.”.

Also coming up over the weekend of August 7/8th, is ‘Art in the Park’ which sounds very exciting. A group of around 6-8 artists will be making Art in the Villa Marina gardens and the public will be able to participate. Amongst other demonstrations, Gavin Carter will be doing some wood carving / sculpting and Rob Smith will be doing some large, experimental paintings. These will then be displayed in The Sayle Gallery. It sounds like it will be a lot of fun so pop that one in your diary while you remember.

minilogoSvetlana Cameron  posted up on FB to say that she is very honoured and delighted to be invited to organise a display of ceremonial portraits and Tynwald Day themed paintings in the Parliament of the Isle of Man. She would be delighted if you would like to see her works which will be displayed in the Tynwald Library between 28 June and 22 July.

minilogoIf you enjoy these news updates, please Share them with your friends and colleagues on FB and Linkedin to help raise awareness of our very talented local Artists. If you would like to do more to help, you can make a wee donation via PayPal here, advertise on this site or sponsor these news updates – just drop me a line for more information:

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!