Sunday, August 30, 2009
Unfortunately, I am a bit late with this as the preview is already over! I have only seen some of Jill's jewellery at her place in Studio 23 but, judging from this, the exhibition at The Fountain Centre should be worth a visit. Below is the information about the exhibition that I received from Jill.
The Craft & Design Collective presents ELEMENTS, an exhibition of contemporary jewellery featuring new work by Fiona Kerr, Garvan Traynor, Jill Graham and Rachel McKnight, at Space CRAFT, the group’s Shop/Gallery/Exhibition Area, up the escalator at The Fountain Centre, College Street, Belfast, from Friday 7th to Saturday 29th August 2009.
9b The Fountain Centre, College Street, Belfast, BT1 6ET
GO UP THAT ESCALATOR!
Friday 7th to Saturday 29th August 2009
Monday to Saturday 10.30am to 5.30pm
Contact: Jan Irwin
T: 028 9032 9342
M: 0779 327 9161
Space CRAFT Shop/Gallery/Exhibition Area is a non-profit taking social economy enterprise managed by the Craft & Design Collective designed to enable the purchase of work made by emerging and established Artist/Designer/Makers.
The Craft & Design Collective is an independent membership organisation formed in 1997 by Artist/Designer/Makers for Artist/Designer/Makers, to help raise the profile, manage and facilitate the development of Craft, Applied Art and Design.
“Yesterday’s News”, Clinton Kirkpatrick: Safehouse Gallery, 25 Donegall Street, Belfast
Clinton in front of his paintings, Colour Field(s) 1-8.
I went to Clinton’s Reception Evening at the Safehouse Gallery on Friday, 19th June. I had seen a few of his paintings before at his studio space in Studio 23, Dunmurry, but this was the first time that I had seen his work properly presented and “en masse”. It makes a major difference to see work in the right setting. I particularly liked the display of eight of Clinton’s painting that I photographed with him in front. Each of the Colour Field paintings is for sale individually (and good in its own right), but they would be stunning if they were kept together and displayed in the same way in a modern, possibly minimalistic, room.
A lot of Clinton’s work is semi-figurative and powerfully coloured, making reference to the visual culture of today, its news flashes and headlines. I would consider that it is well worth a visit before it closes on the 9th July.
Last Thursday, 30th April, I went to an exhibition of work by Jack Pakenham and James Millar at the Whalley Gallery, Holywood, Co. Down. I like the work by Pakenham, but my main reason for going was to renew a friendship with James Millar, with whom I had lost touch over the years when I was teaching in Cookstown.
In the evening of 1st May, I went to opening of a group art show in the Grand Opera House. Two large, dramatic paintings on paper (plus one smaller one) should have set the opening mood for the exhibition but, unfortunately, these could only be displayed on the walls of the restaurant at the back of the foyer, so they were easily missed on the initial entry into the building (I only discovered them on the way out).
It’s a long time since I have been in the Opera House but, on inquiry, I was directed up the stairs to the second floor. There I was greeted by a young lady who marked me as attending the exhibition by tying a strip of red cloth around my arm and I received a red stamp on the back of my hand, all very suitable for an exhibition entitled, “Passion, Love and Revolution”! I was then shown through a black curtain into a large darkened room, where a short, grainy black and white film was endlessly repeating. Shortly after this, the show was duly opened by the curator of the show, Liam Brendan de Frinse with a few, well-chosen words and his reading of a short poem written by another member of Kult Pulp Productions, the group behind the show.
Kult Pulp Productions is a bunch of professional artists, some well-established, some just emerging, coming from a wide range of different specialities. They desire, and I quote, to demystify art by “making it more accessible, beautiful, affordable, exciting, fun, different, and above all radical.” One nice little idea, which certainly made it more fun, was the availability of badges, all different, which were available for purchase. The badges were sometimes witty, always decorative, and generally unusual. I liked the badges which, at only £2 each, allowed one to pick up a small, but meaningful souvenir of the exhibition.
The main group of pictures are exhibited in the Phoenix Gallery in the Opera House, so to get there I had to leave the darkened room, cross the landing and into a small corridor towards the front of the building. In the corridor outside the gallery were another couple of quirky touches. To the left, a small bag invited one to take a small piece of folded paper from it and to follow the instructions contained within. To the right, another bag, containing a small nest with some strange looking eggs, hung from a red ribbon.
In the Phoenix gallery itself hung about ten pictures, some figurative, some non-figurative. Several pieces appeal to me because of their references to Constructivist art, at the time of the Russian Revolution (before the communists hijacked it). Constructivist art broke new boundaries with regard to graphics and typology. The fact that the paintings were anonymously priced at £500 meant that the paintings were affordable as well as potentially a good investment (work by some of the participating artists normally sell at well above this price).
At this stage I am going to digress somewhat. I am going to live dangerously and venture in some detail into one of the pictures that I particularly liked (which is not to say that my understanding of the painting is at all the same as that intended by the artist).