THE GARDEN PROJECT / PROSIECT YR ARDD MIXED SHOW
21 November 2020 - 24 January 2021 (extended online with lockdown)
I was inspired to start the Garden Project following the initial lockdown in March 2020 and decided to start up a ‘micro stall’ in front of the gallery with an honesty box. The plants were a mix of organic vegetables, herbs and edible flowers. They proved to be really popular and I really enjoyed sharing my passion for growing with others. I thought it would be interesting to track down some of the plants and visit the gardens where they ended up and to meet the people behind the plants with the aim of creating a photographic collection of gardener’s portraits. The idea was to encourage growing, engage with the local community and lift the spirits during such a terrible year. All the gardeners that I met shared a pure joy and love for growing. The resulting portraits offer a tiny glimpse into the gardener’s worlds and show a community united through their love of growing. The photos were displayed as a montage to create one piece representing the connections made in the community through the plant stall. At the end of the exhibition the montage was divided and gifted to the plant owners in the same way the seeds were sown and then divided to provide homegrown food in the area.
All artists created new works exclusively for the exhibition and were inspired by their gardening environments in 2020. The guest artists featured in the exhibition were:
Annabel Cooper - Botanical Paper Sculptures; Dorothy Taylor - Paintings; Ffion Gwyn - Paintings; Harri Carmichael - Jewellery and Lithographic Prints; Iona Pickard - Crafts; Jane Williams - Ceramics; Kim Dewsbury – Paintings; Kim Sweet - Ink on Paper; Mima - Photography; Sue Terrey - Felted Wall Hangings; Susie Liddle - Mixed Media; Terrence Bunce - Ceramics
This exhibition was part funded by the Arts Council of Wales and National Lottery for part funding this project through the Individual Stabilisation Fund. Thank you!
THE NATURE OF SNOWDONIA & HOPE: THE CREATIVE RESPONSE
10 September - 23 October 2020
In response to 2020 and living in the middle of a pandemic, I curated two exhibitions as one, called 'The Nature of Snowdonia' and 'Hope: The Creative Response'.
In 2020 I looked to Snowdonia, and Mt Snowdon itself as representing a metaphor for the year. We have all had to climb the equivalent of mountains this year in somewhat treacherous conditions without a map or guide. The year has also brought a stillness and we have enjoyed some beautiful calm and warm weather here in the early days of lockdown. Amongst the chaos there was a time for stillness and a re-connection with nature. A chance possibility to re-think the 'new normal' and create a better future. This is where 'Hope: The Creative Response' comes in. The two themes work simultaneously together! The artwork was designed to uplift and give hope during the Autumn fall. A time for building strength and staying strong for the winter months to come. The majority of the works in the exhibition are newly created and the artists on show are going to make the dullest day seem sunny.
The artist line-up included:
THE NATURE OF SNOWDONIA
Alice Frances Jones - Paintings; Dave Roberts - Pastel; Harri Carmichael - Monoprints and Jewellery; Ian Phillips - Printmaking; Shàn Ellis - Painting; Terrence Bunce – Ceramics; Sarah Kearsley Wooller - Fused Glass
HOPE: THE CREATIVE RESPONSE
Dorothy Taylor - Painting; Judith Harrison - Mixed Media; Jane Williams - Ceramics; Katy Jones - Painting; Michelle Heidi Sutton - Textile/Embroidery; Patricia Aspinall - Painting; Tara Dean - Mixed Media
SUMMER SALE - MIXED SHOW
23 July - 30 August 2020
This exhibition was quite spontaneous following the lock down. With the majority of the programme now moved safely to 2021, Mima invited some regular contributors to the gallery to give them the opportunity to promote their work. This offered an unpredictable mix and an impromptu show that was a fantastic success under the difficult and challenging circumstances caused by COVID-19 and operating under visitor restrictions and distancing.
The line-up included, Claire Acworth (Jewellery), Kirsti Hannah Brown (Ceramics), Terrence Bunce (ceramics), Shàn Ellis (Painting), Karen Hall (Embroidery), Judith Harrison (Mixed Media), Valerie Land (Painting), Glenys Lawson (Painting), David W.J. Lloyd (Mixed Media), Mima (Photography), Ian Phillips (Printmaking), and Kiran Sharma (Painting/Printmaking), Below is a sample of works from the show.
HELFA GELF SPRING SHOW
15 March - 19 April 2020 (Extended to 10 May)
Note - The exhibition went virtual soon after the opening due to the lock down with COVID-19
This was a special exhibition curated by Oriel Ty Meirion that brought fourteen visiting artists together from the current Helfa Gelf catalogue under one roof with a focus on the theme of ‘New Beginnings’.
The line-up included, Claire Acworth (Jewellery), Kirsti Hannah Brown (Ceramics), Tara Dean (Mixed Media/Printmaking), Rachel Farr (Mixed Media/Painting), Jenny Ford (Printmaker/Painter), Jan Gardner (Painting), Helen Howlett (Painting), Ceri Pritchard (Painting), Verity Pulford (Hand-painted fused glass), Dave Roberts (Painting), Kiran Sharma (Painting/Printmaking), Les Symonds (Woodturner), Dorothy Taylor (Mixed Media/Painting/Photography) and Bee Weir (Glass/Textiles). Below is a sample of works from the show.
Here is an amateur video of the Helfa Gelf Spring show filmed just after lock down was announced.
FOLKLORE & FAIRY TALES
OF NORTH WALES
22 October - 5 January 2020
North Wales is a land rich in folklore and fairytales. This exhibition was curated with a mix of artists from the region and beyond that came together to tell their own versions of ancient stories from north Wales. Many works were based on the famous Mabinogion tales and with the gallery located on the doorstep to some of these stories gave fuel for the imagination.
The artist line-up included Kirsti Hannah Brown (Pottery), Naomi Bunker (Sculpture), Lucy Copleston (Jewellery), Seven Coupar (Textile/Embroidery), Remy Dean (Author & Printmaker), Ffion Gwyn (Paintings), Karen Hall (Textile/Embroidery), Harry Carmichael (Jewellery), Judith Harrison (Mixed Media), Katy Jones (Paintings), Miriam Jones (Woodwork), Katherine Keatley (Textile/Embroidery), David Lloyd (Mixed Media), Flora McLachlan (Etchings), Jean Napier (Author), Ian Phillips (Printmaker), Iona Pickard (Knitwear), Nerys Rowse (Printmaker), Sue Rundle-Hughes (Paintings and Drawings), Katherine Soutar Caddick (Illustrations), Les Symonds (Woodturner), Su Walls (Painter & Printmaker) and Jane Williams (Pottery). Here are some samples of the work in the show.
SHÀN ELLIS - NATURAL ELEMENTS
22 September - 13 October 2019
Shàn Ellis is a local painter based in Llanfair near Harlech on the west coast of north Wales.
The inspiration for this exhibition is based on the ‘Natural Elements’. Shàn is drawn to the colours, shapes, forms and shadows that surround her, and the beaches and mountains of north Wales create an abundance of inspiration.
Shàn’s paintings are influenced by an emotional and evocative response to the landscape that lingers in her memory. This could be a complicated web of branches and roots or the dramatic skies of a sunset. Shàn will begin a work by drawing and often keeps returning to a location with her sketchpad. She will also take photographs to later develop her final piece in the studio.
Shàn usually works in acrylic on canvas or board and also likes to experiment with different media such as gouache, watercolour, ink, pastel, charcoal and collage for texture. Shàn works to capture the image that has caught her attention and transcend her emotional response through the meditative process of painting. This collection is timeless and shows the natural beauty of the landscape inspired by Shàn’s unique vision.
THE FLORA AND FAUNA OF SNOWDONIA
14 July - 15 September 2019
Artists included Dylan Arnold (Photography), Kirsti Hannah Brown (Ceramics), Terrence Bunce (ceramics), Naomi Bunker (Sculpture), Kim and Gerald Dewsbury (Painting), Rachel Farr (Mixed Media), Ffion Gwyn (Painting), Katherine Keatley (Embroidery), Matt James (Drawing), Glenys Lawson (Painting), Valerie Land (Painting), Jane Lloyd (Painting), Flora McLachlan (Etchings), Ian Phillips (Printmaking), Iona Pickard (Knitting), Nerys Rowse (Printmaker), Les Symonds (Woodturner), Alexandra Symons (Jewellery), Melanie Williams (Encaustic Painting) and me (Photography).
This was a great mix of art that captured the essence and energy of the Flora and Fauna that surrounds us here in Snowdonia National Park.
The Flora & Fauna of Snowdonia exhibition featured on the S4C Heno programme. This is a recording of the clip aired on 11 September 2019. Diolch Heno!
VALERIE LAND & TERRENCE BUNCE
24 May - 30 June 2019
Valerie Land is a popular artist living in Friog on the west coast of Wales. Her paintings often reflect the mood of a place. The collection of tree inspired works on display captures the imagination with a beautiful ethereal quality that reflects nature and our landscape leaving a sense of calm and inner peace.
These paintings are inspired by a mood of the familiar and Valerie enjoys exploring texture, different colour combinations with layers of paint which encourage the viewer to gaze at the composition and explore the hidden depths. It is clear that she is influenced by Japanese art and the Impressionist and Pre-Raphaelite movements.
Overall, the works draw the viewer into a magical, contemplative and much needed restful world.
Listen to Valerie talking to Alice Oliver at North Wales News here about the show.
Terrence Bunce creates work that rebels against the endless cacophony of mass-produced products that are increasingly permeating our world. Terrence uses a variety of techniques to produce his pottery. He decorates his pieces with locally inspired glazes and gathers clay and minerals from the mountains of Snowdonia, firing mainly by reduction.
His work is strongly influenced by Japanese pottery. He is inspired by the mountains surrounding his home in North Wales and the local coast line to create a fine range of pottery, that are both functional and sculptural.
There is a sense of alchemy to his work that is reflected in his medium choice and attitude towards the consumerist world. It takes in all the elements of earth, air, water and fire to create a piece of work that somehow restores a little balance in our unbalanced world. Terrence takes us back to the natural world where the imagination can wonder to a pre- Neolithic time.
5 April - 19 May 2019
Melanie Williams is a successful encaustic and mixed media artist living locally in Bala. Melanie has been using the encaustic method for many years now, which is a rare medium in the UK. The word encaustic originates from the Greek word ‘enkaustikos’ which mean to ‘burn in’ and dates back 2000 years. Melanie uses a mix of hot wax, damar resin and coloured pigments with a range of hot and cold tools to create unique artworks that are inspired by the outstanding natural beauty of Wales.
Melanie begins a piece of encaustic artwork by setting down layers of pure beeswax and damar resin on a birch panel. The beeswax is sourced from local suppliers and the beautiful aroma of the melting wax sets the tone and atmosphere for the creative journey. Melanie creates texture and a weave of wax upon which to express the narrative of the work in mind. There could be up to 30 layers of wax laid down on the birch panel, whilst consciously choosing colours, tools and innovative techniques according to the image or impression being created. The colour is created from oil paint, dry pigment, oil pastels and sometimes shellac. It is easy to sense the embodiment of the ancient art of encaustic painting and to see the unique characteristics that only the wax can create.
These works depict the region of Snowdonia National Park using an ancient method from a contemporary art impression, with a fresh approach to abstract realism that truly evokes all the senses. The resulting works are not only reflections of the region inspired by the artist, they embody a part of the region through the use of the bees-wax. Melanie has turned the essences of the land itself into art through her impression and material.
OCEAN & MOUNTAIN INSPIRED SEASONAL FAIR
15 November - 23 December 2018
This exhibition was a representation of local landscape by a group of local artists and crafters from around the region.
Makers included Cambrian Beach Guardian creating from ocean waste, Dylan Arnold (photography), Ian Phillips (printmaker), Janice Osbaldeston (Painting), Melanie Williams (Encaustic Painting), Nerys Rowse (printmaker), Peter Hedd Williams (Painter), Peter Mattinson (Painters), Sophia Ingham (Textiles), Tanya Hardman (Jewellery) and Valerie Land (Painting). The works all offered a great insight and flair of the region.
29 September - 4 November 2018
Ian Phillips is a Printmaker, living in Gwynedd. His work specializes in portraying the wild landscape and seascapes of Wales, with a current emphasis on Snowdonia and the North Wales coast.
In 2001 he moved to mid Wales to study the landscape and improve his relief printmaking technique. Ian’s printing process today starts, as it always has done; with a walk and a sketchbook. He follows lonely trails over empty hills; through twisting forests tracks; or along cliff side paths; waiting for colour, pattern and texture to catch his eye. Ian is looking for a finished composition he can use standing out in the landscape. Once he finds the right place to stand and the right direction to look he starts drawing. Once back in the studio the work consists of scaling up the image to size, drawing it out and starting the cut.
The printing of a linocut is all about pattern. The image may start life as a scribble in a sketchbook but as work commences with linoleum, the process becomes all about gouging and cutting to make marks. These marks then create a picture through the suggestions of the texture of rock, or the patterns of water for example. Ian builds up patterns and textures to create the feel, mood and atmosphere for the landscape of which he walked.
Here is an amateur clip of the solo exhibition of works by Ian Phillips during his solo exhibition recorded in September 2018.
PETER HEDD WILLIAMS
30 August - 23 September 2018
Tŷ Meirion was pleased to represent Peter Hedd Williams, who is a local artist based in Penrhyndeudraeth. His paintings and drawings are greatly inspired from the views found here in Snowdonia National Park.
His work has truly captured the colour and energy of this dramatic landscape. From the rugged and dramatic beauty of the mountains to the equally magnificent and ever-changing coastline. Peter enjoys nothing more than immersing himself in Snowdonia’s splendour, which is majestically penetrated throughout his work.
Peter works mostly with oils and pencils on canvas and board.