Monthly Archives: July 2015

Sonia Delaunay Summer

After a hectic few months we’ve taken a trip down South to catch up with friends, family and exhibitions.

Sonia Delaunay was top of my list, I’ve admired her work for years and remember seeing bits and pieces on various trips to Paris, taking Art students to the galleries there was an annual occurrence in a previous role.

So, Tate Modern was the target today. It was fabulous. Room after room of the fantastic Ms Delaunay, paintings, textiles, fashion, furniture and mosaic.

(It’s on for a couple more weeks, go if you can!)

Her sense of colour is so exhilarating, from the earliest Gauguin and Fauve inspired pieces to abstracts of the 1970’s. Most inspiring to an aspiring textile artist is the way she used both fine at and textile media as fluent channels for her ideas on simultaneous contrasts. 
The geometric forms and bold colours look modern on fabric and paper. Her way of mixing life and art, so interior or fashion design reflect the ideas explored in paintings still appeals. (Although, perhaps not the knitted wool swimsuit!) 

She would seem to have been a person who really loved life and was enthusiastic about living in the moment. Her excitement over electric lighting on Parisian streets in the early Twentieth Century, her paintings capturing Spanish markets and Flamenco dancers all show a passion for what she found around her. 


It was a glorious couple of hours, I think the piece I most loved was the ‘Bal Buliers’ showing Parisiens dancing the Tango, closely followed by the Flamenco scenes. But I wouldn’t say no if offered the scarlet and eau de nil linen coat! 

The exhibition reminded me of the need to keep sketchbooks and ideas flowing, of how much I like the combination of text and image, and the power of colour to capture a sense of place and time.

I’ll be digging out my Delaunay books when I get back to the studio!

Summer Time Workshop

Just to show that it hasn’t ALL been about maps lately!

Back at the end of May I did a One day Workshop with a group of Y9 High School students. They had been given the opportunity to exhibit as part of the Alnmouth Arts Festival 2015 in the lovely Aln Gift Shop . So we had the task of making something appropriate in one day.

After discussion with their teacher, I took the group through my ‘Tin Can Metamorphosis’ workshop, where simple mackerel tins are upcycled to become beautiful miniature works of art. The Y9 group used the technique of needle felting to create seaside and holiday scenes that were then housed in the upcycled tins.

(I should point out that the tins were emptied of their fishy contents, washed and dried before they became artworks – and yes, I eat a lot of mackerel!)

As you will see below, the outcomes were stunning, all reflecting the individuality of their makers and showing great skill and creativity.

Big thanks to all the Y9 pupils and Mrs Brown, I really enjoyed working with you all and hope you had a great day as well!

Many thanks to the Aln Gift Shop for taking the time to display the work so beautifully, staging it with similarly themed gifts and artworks from their stock.

And thank you to the Alnmouth Arts Festival for giving me a name check in their programme:)

Aln 1 Aln 2 Aln 3