Crusade No. 41 – Grid Lock

Most months I try to do Michelle Ward’s Crusade over at the GPP Street Team site. Crusade 41 is entitled Grid Lock – Michelle’s tips include a very cool way of marking out a grid on paper or in your journal. I decided to use this Crusade for a practical purpose. I have started dong a scrapbook of our recent trip to Dubai and Italy; I decided the album would be black and white cardstock only, with a little black and white patterned paper here and there. My favorite scrapbook shop sent me some lovely supplies but I hate cutting into “good” paper – silly I know. So, I have cut a sample of each piece of patterned paper and stuck it in the grids in my visual diary. Now the sheets are not “good” any more and I’ll get on and use them.

If you haven’t been to Michelle’s sites before, why not pop across and have a look? And if you lurk but don’t join in, why not grab some supplies and have a try. Then have a look at all the other entries this month, they’re sure to inspire you. Don’t forget to leave a comment everywhere you visit, you’re sure to make their day 🙂

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Edith Collier @ the Sarjeant Gallery in Wanganui

One of the things Tony and I realised while in Italy and Dubai is that we enjoy spending time together, but rarely do so. We have come back with a firm plan to go out once a fortnight, taking turn and turn about organising an outing. Today was my turn; we headed off to Wanganui and our first stop was the Sarjeant Gallery. It’s just re-opened after a bit of a do-up and is looking very smart. They have a wonderful shop with jewelery and glassworks by some of Wanganui’s many talented artists; Wanganui is well known for its glass artists and it is easy to see why.

The Sarjeant Gallery in Wanganui

The inside has beautiful wooden floors, high ceilings and lovely light.

There are two exhibitions on at the moment as two areas are still having a bit of work done to them. The first was “Edith Collier: a celebration of the 125th anniversary of the artist’s birth”. Edith Collier is undoubtedly the most significant painter to have been born in Wanganui. From 1912 to 1921 she spent time in England studying at art school and with distinguished artists such as Frances Hodgkins and Margaret Preston. Since 1985, the Sarjeant Gallery has been fortunate to be the caretakers of her significant artistic output. This exhibition celebrates the 125th anniversary of the artist’s birth and features work spanning the breadth of her career.

Collier – the Spanish woman

I admire her work in a technical sense, but can’t say I’m a huge fan of much of her painting. They are just too dark and sombre for me – the exception would be some of the watercolour landscapes she produced while in England, which have a much lighter feel.

Also on was “Colour”. This exhibition brings together artworks and objects from the collections of the Sarjeant Gallery and the Whanganui Regional Museum and is on display in both venues.  By mixing up artworks and objects – from the thickly painted surface of an oil painting, to the plush fur of a stuffed animal – this exhibition looks at what each colour means to us, how it shapes our response to the environment, to each other and to the things that surround us in our everyday lives.  The exhibition includes photography, printmaking, painting and sculpture and a diverse range of objects including an x-ray machine, an impressive pair of peacocks and a tiger skin rug! Co-curated by Greg Donson and Damian Skinner.

I loved this exhibition; I love colour and I love variety and this had both in abundance. They even featured orange, my favorite colour and topic of ongoing explorations. One of the highlights for me was seeing a Philip Clairmont work in the flesh. The colours are wild and the image is so chaotic. Not an image I could live with, but that’s not the point.

Colour exhibition

From the Gallery we headed downtown for a spot of shopping, finding some lovely slippers on sale for my Aunt who I have Power of Attorney for (she has a form of Dementia and is in a secure unit, so I shop for her). We had a chat with the car dealer we always use, then lunch at a lovely cafe before heading slowly home. It was a lovely outing, great to spend relaxing time together, and wonderful to see some quality New Zealand art.

Starting on 56 6×6″ canvases

As part of my deal with shareholders in the trip we made to Italy for the LEGATO exhibition, I now have to make 56 6×6″ paintings. They all have their newsletter with its full colour photos, so that’s a good job done. I want the works to all be individual but at the same time do not want to create unnecessary work for myself. My intention is to work on the paintings in batches, probably six at a time. I have ideas for the first 3 or 4 batches and am mulling over the rest, making notes as I go. The first batch, which I am going to start on later today, involve digital art printed out on rice paper, glued down with gel medium and then worked over with more collage and probably some oil pastels.

Below is the digital work I have done so far. It’s made up of four photos initially. Then I have taken a photo of some poppies in the field and removed all the background so I have a field of floating poppies. I have layered this over the original digital collage for a sort of dreamy surreal effect. It’ll be interesting to see what happens when I start adding a few more collaged poppies over the top, then working in with the oil pastels.

Images from LEGATO

Sticking to my new commitment to blog once each weekend, here is this week’s post (it’s a long weekend here so Monday counts…).

These are just some of the artworks from the LEGATO exhibition in Italy in May. I had four works there and Tony and I travelled over for the exhibition. The trip was like a late, late honeymoon and a somewhat early Silver Wedding anniversary. This is a fairly random selection, and is certainly not all the works that were on display. They were hard to photograph for various reasons so sorry about the quality of some shots. Enjoy 🙂

Decisions, decisions

One of the things about being on holiday is having time to think. And think I did.

I have decided that I need to change the way I am managing my time, my online presence, and my commitments – especially around my art. I haven’t been a very regular blogger lately and want to be, but need it to be manageable. So, I am committing to one post each weekend – starting next Saturday or Sunday. I hope it is a pattern I can stick to. I am also removing myself from some of the online art galleries I have been using, and changing somewhat how I use Facebook and Twitter.

One of my prime motivations is that I want more time doing art, less time doing other stuff. In addition, I want to de-clutter our house; I am finding our ‘stuff’ is getting in my way. It feels good to have made a decision about issues that have been on my mind for quite a while now. Onward and upward!