Thursday, 4 December 2014

Finding Inspiration: Mariette Voke

c.Mariette Voke

There's a certain pleasure which comes from finding small, almost inconsequential, everyday objects, which have been demoted to 'junk' over the passage of time yet give a glimpse of social history past. For example, the discovery of the 'Daphne Bryant' name tapes and all of the questions such a find poses.
The frisson of such a vintage find is one which often captures the imagination of Mariette Voke and accordingly makes it's way into her paintings.

"An awful lot of my paintings depict fabric, lettering, or both and I’m always looking for ways to get little bits of text into my pictures. Coat hangers are great for almost unnoticeably sneaking in a few words, clues to the meanings and origins of the paintings. I’m very happy when I find fabric with words on it, and one of my favourites are woven name tapes, they’re a perfect combination of lettering, fabrics and personal history brought together in something tiny, precious and individual. I’m looking forward to painting name tapes in the A Group Gathering  project which I’ll be working on between now and the spring. I had such a rush of ideas late last night, I had to jump out the bath and find a pencil!"  "
Mariette Voke December 2014

Wednesday, 3 December 2014

Finding Inspiration: Tamsin Abbott

c.Tamsin Abbott
Almost two months have passed since the project artists were given their single, pale glove. For all concerned this is a period of contemplation about how to handle the challenge. Many have expressed the intention of putting their thoughts on hold until the New Year to allow other projects to conclude, while for a few, inspiration has struck when least expected.   
Here's a chance find which recently presented itself to Tamsin Abbott on Ebay, a 1927 Girl Guide diary where the name Daphne would not be out of place perhaps. Full of gems about the authors daily life such as, "We're in the middle of a quarrel with George.", this isn't an object or subject which would usually inspire Tamsin's work in stained glass. It will therefore be fascinating to see how, if, this find will work it's way into Tamsin's final glove piece.


Monday, 1 December 2014


c. Sharon Hall Shipp

Group Gathering artist Sharon Hall Shipp is one of 80 artists from across England to be commissioned by art organisation, Woolgather, to make a limited edition artwork for it's Vend project. The challenge of this commission has been to make work in quantity and of a suitable size to fit into a small plastic ball. These small pieces of art will be available to buy via vending machines this month for the princely sum of £1!
"Woolgather have commissioned new works from artists across the UK and are using vending machines to provide a platform for their practice whilst also developing an audience and consumer for the works. Art Vend offers people an art experience amongst everyday life, by placing the machines in public venues such as shopping centres, bars, cafes and at public events, the hope is to maximise the chance of reaching people who may not usually engage with the arts. Ultimately the aim is that the product received will provide a more satisfactory or challenging reward than the standard interaction with a vending machine whilst offering an open door to a contemporary art scene."
Sharon Hall Shipp " I made 150 unique tiles, each numbered using sections of maps and on the reverse a piece of random book text with a word selected. All together in sequence the words make up a story about Tom (one of the books was Tom Sawyer) and Zuma (another book was Montezuma's Daughter). Each tile is presented in a handmade momigami paper envelope."

If you'd like to see the work created by Sharon and her project contemporaries it will be displayed together for a short period from Saturday 6th December. Thereafter you will find them in the Woolgather vending machines across Leeds.
Venue: 15-17 Duncan Street, Leeds, LS1 6DQ (opposite Corn Exchange)
6th-21st December 2014 12pm-6pm
Photo: Jess Rowbottom