We are most pleased to announce that the new art exhibition ‘Visions’ by Jay Hurst has gone up at Chester Art Centre!
The private view and ‘meet the artist’ event will take place on Thursday, 10th of March.
We look forward to seeing you at our NOT socially distanced event!!
From surreal and slightly macabre fantasy to the beauty of organic form, with close observation of nature ‘worthy of a Dutch flower painter’ to portraits reminiscent ‘of a renaissance master’, this selection of drawings and paintings by award winning artist Jay Hurst have it all.
“Jay Hurst’s Visions is such a richly diverse collection of images…. a cornucopia indeed.”
Ian Watson, author of the Screen Story for Spielberg’s A.I. Artificial Intelligence.
“Jay Hurst is that rare creature – a modern fine artist who has mastered the disciplines of anatomy, composition, perspective and chiaroscuro. From hyper-realism to surreal fantasy, his stunning paintings can be delightful, disturbing and witty.”
Bryan Talbot, Writer/Artist, Grandville, Luther Arkwright, Alice in Sunderland
Chris Moore, Artist, Illustrator
“These are terrific! After the Wars has a calmness which belies what, to me, is a nightmare post-apocalyptic dream land.”
Julian Baum, VFX Artist, Illustrator
“Great skill and creativity…. Your work is excellent!”
Gary Blythe, Artist, Winner of the Kate Greenaway Medal
“He is clearly not without talent and he fights his corner and might well turn out to be exactly the bolshy young man we need right now, as someone once said of me.”
Michael Sandle RA, Sculptor, Artist
“Extraordinary! Quite brilliant…”
Jim Fitzpatrick, Artist, creator of the original Che Guevara poster
“Portraiture, still life, beautiful pencil work of his home city of Chester, wild science fiction and fantasy imaginings, it’s all grist to Jay Hurst’s churning, hyperdriven brain… he is an artist with a real message”
Jim Burns, internationally acclaimed science fiction and fantasy artist.
“Jay’s raw perspective of our world and sometimes twisted imagination, combined with his deep knowledge of light, surface, and the mediums he works with, is a joy to the eyes.”
Paul Varney, Artist, Game Designer. Credits: Sacrifice, X-Com, The Bards Tale, FIFA and Driver series
We are extremely excited to finally invite you to this fantastic show which had to be postponed so many times before! ‘Random Marks’ by Random is an exhibition we have been looking forward to for a long time now!
The exhibition will run between 5 and 26 April with the preview taking place on April 7th.
‘I believe I’m addicted to art; it’s a condition I inherited from my parents.
No matter what I am doing, watching or reading, I am all too easily distracted by a shape, or a shadow, and even in the most gripping movies my eye will always go to the paintings and sculptures in the background.
I love making art, every aspect of it brings me joy. I love the focus it brings where you lose hours chasing a curve on a sculpture or cutting ever more intricate stencils. I love the obsession that I experience when I’m in the middle of a piece, I love the thinking and planning process, I love learning new techniques and then experimenting with them, I love the finished pieces.
This exhibition consists of work I have produced over the last few years, both pre and post Covid. It reflects my changing passions and interests from stencil work and spray paint to printmaking, carving and mould making though to pure sculpture. Each new technique and method I have learnt feeds back into previous skills, reinforcing and adapting them in a continuous evolving loop of creative possibility.
Street art has played a significant role in my development as an artist and I have had the privilege of painting at festivals such as Upfest and Street Level. I have work displayed (both officially and unofficially) in cities across the UK and Europe as well as a couple of pieces in New York.
My work is created with paper, spray paint, steel and resin. These materials are available to everyone, but when treated with care and attention can transform into objects that allow the viewer to see the world from a slightly different perspective.
I am a self-taught artist and I live and work in North Wales, my work is (hopefully) a reflection of the artists whose work I have admired over the years.
I Hope you enjoy the show’.
TRAVELS WITH JAQUELINE by Liz Taylor
We are thrilled to finally found out the full itinerary of Jaqueline’s recent travels! We have seen postcards from various exciting locations, but are still not quite sure what she has been up to!
The exhibition will open on the 3rd of November and will run for 3 weeks until the 23rd of November, with the Private View taking place on Thursday the 4th!
‘Created mainly during Lockdowns 2 and 3, Jacqueline is a figment of my imagination. A woman who loves to travel, loves good food, good wine and lives in Paris with her adorable pooch Mimi. In TRAVELS WITH JAQUELINE, we go on a worldwide, whirlwind tour, from Paris to London, Florence, Venice and Rome.
Then to the romantic Cinque Terre in Italy, the beautiful island of Santorini, Greece, with a stop off at The 4 Cats bar in Barcelona, taking in The Picasso exhibition. At a time when the whole world was locked down, we join Jacqueline shopping with Mimi in New York, absorbed in the wonders of the breath taking Taj Mahal in India, glorious Moscow and not to mention catching her on a London Bus on the way to Tower Bridge.
Yes, Jaqueline knows how to travel.
I have used a combination of my own experience travelling through Europe during my theatrical touring days together with my longing for travel during this extraordinary time. Do come and join me and Jacqueline together with Mimi for this feast of visual beauty, exciting travel and so much more.’
Liz Taylor trained as a professional actor and for well over 20 years loved touring the UK and Eastern Europe, driving a van full of actors, props, costumes, puppets and masks, performing accessible theatre in a diverse range of settings in the most beautiful of countries in Europe, and being paid for the privilege. Throughout this time, she worked within the avant-garde style of theatre, pushing the boundaries and creating extraordinary work. Designing and making masks, puppets and props as well as performing visual theatre. The style of theatre has definitely carried through to Liz’s visual art!
Join us on Thursday, the 4th of November, for some fabulous stories about Jaqueline’s adventures told by our fabulous artist Liz Taylor from 6 PM onwards!
This exhibition of paintings is inspired by the beautiful British coastline, and captures the relationship between the land and the sea with its ever-changing colours, light and atmosphere.
Equally as evident in these works is the emotional response to the landscape.
“I aim to capture the essence of a scene through the abstraction of colour and light. The colours work in harmony to capture a moment in time.
Whilst the moment is transitory, the mood evokes elemental connections we have with places that feel eternal – this [ our relationship with coastal landscapes] is an aspect of Mike’s poetry that impresses me”.
A chance meeting between the artist Sue Walsh with the poet, Mike Penney, led to this exhibition, a collaboration between artist and poet.
The exhibition will run between 13 July and 3 August 2021
You can view some of Sue’s work here in our online gallery, but no new pieces have been revealed yet! 🙂
We are looking forward to seeing you at Chester Art Centre for the private view of this magical exhibition on the 15th of July from 6:30 PM!
We are very excited to be showing Brigitte Watkinson’s ‘Nomansland’ from 14th September to 5th October 2021. Why not join us for the Private View on Thursday, 16th September from 19:00 to 21:00!
Born and raised in Bavaria, Brigitte previously studied and taught languages before focussing on art. She maintains a particular interest in language, its semantics and social contexts. Drawing on day to day conversations, literal translations and often poking fun at political rhetoric and propaganda, she employs metaphors, materials and methods to ravel and unravel communication processes and to create new narratives. Mainly self-taught, she has been working as a full-time artist for a number of years, culminating in her recent MA in Fine Arts. As a result, her work has evolved to incorporate additional disciplines including sculpture, collage, installation, animation and photography.
We look forward to seeing you on 16th September for wine, an insight into a utopian future and fantastic artwork!
You can see more of Brigitte’s work on her web page: www.makeslugsbeautiful.co.uk
You call me woMAN,
but I am not MAN
You call me huMAN,
but I am not MAN
You talk of MANkind,
but I am not MAN?
I long for noMANsland,
where we are all dunkwonhami.
History is made and posthumanism pondered as the status quo for humanity shifts.
Based on scientific evidence that the first human was female, my speculations around feminist language result in fabulations of past, present and a utopian future. Through time and via a patriarchal Vitruvian Action Man©, I depict humans evolving from this original mother into dunkwonhami, who inhabit the protective landscape of the Cluechenthu.
Anagrams, metaphors, methods and materials twist and turn like a Rubik’s cube, offering and creating new narratives. Gender, language and process intra-act.
Words, images, objects and meanings are made and remade. The recycled, the homemade, the pilfered and the found are constructed and reconstructed; the story unfolds.
If you have missed the private view for the ‘Winds of Change’ by Gillian Robertson, this Saturday afternoon will be your second chance to meet the artist! 🙂
Pop in to have a look at some fabulous paintings and meet Gillian, who will be happy to talk you through her exhibition and the inspiration behind her work!
Looking forward to seeing you.
The ‘Winds of Change’ is an art exhibition by Gillian Robertson that is running between 3 August and 1 September at Chester Art Centre.
Following Gillian’s exhibition ‘Wonderful World’ in 2019, Winds of Change is inspired by the growing concern about the effects of climate change. Her paintings reflect on the power and vulnerability of nature in the light of human efforts to dominate and control the natural world.
The exhibition features local landscapes flooded or bathed in ominous light, birds and animals threatened with displacement, and woodlands and remains of the past that remind us of the transience of our lives and the greater power of the forces upon which we depend.
See also : www.gillianrobertson.co.uk
The gallery is open Tuesday – Saturday between 10 Am and 5 PM.
‘I work in contemporary mediums. My studio is a mess of circuit boards, plastic resins and paint. I spend my time meditating and splicing one material with another. I love the contrast I create between colours and textures, everything is in a constant juxtaposition. I am probably considered a painter by many, but I feel more like a sculptor who works on canvas. To me the challenge is to create something with ‘feeling’ that evokes strong feelings in others. I am not always successful and at times this journey is painful, especially when you make that connection. Often, I feel naked when this happens, because someone is looking at me without my armour of bullshit. After the initial shock dies down and I no longer feel as vulnerable, I realise I have achieved something, that I am not pretending, there is a genuine connection.
Meditation and being a flawed human being is the key to my creative ‘process’. I tend to start with the structure of the painting or the concept. This is very much a conscious act, a little bit like visualising a sandcastle. As I work further into the piece, the original idea is ‘washed away’ each time, the mental image compromised. Each subsequent layer of paint, plastic or texture becomes a response to the modified vision. This is where the structure gives way to the feeling and the conscious begins to merge with the unconscious. This can become difficult to reconcile at times, there is risk involved. Sometimes paintings become over-worked when they should be abandoned. Sometimes detail is lost, sometimes I get lost.
I think contextually my work exists somewhere between abstract expressionism and the conceptual art foragers, for whom, Marcel Duchamp’s ‘Readymade’ is the life blood. The reoccurring theme would be creation born of frustration, be it with others or with oneself. I long for a certain amount of creative freedom. I am attempting to avoid the potholes of over thinking. Concentrate on breathing, clear the mind, and follow intuition, well for as long as possible in a heavy duty filter mask.
I take my tools of expression, and all the techniques I have developed and in rare cases mastered, then I leave the safety of roads firmly travelled. My journey will take me into the unknown, the black void of nothingness. When I return I have unlocked a piece of the puzzle but paid for it with a piece of myself. This is the price all creative minds pay until ultimately there is no exchange left’.
‘Surreal Reality’ art exhibition by Greg Forster
We are excited to announce Greg’s exhibition which will take place at Chester Art Centre for two weeks starting on the 26th of April and will run until the 10th of May 2022. The preview evening will take place on Thursday 28th April.
Influenced by the surrealists of the 1920/30’s and cartoonists of the 1980’s, Greg creates bizarre and imaginative colourful worlds with weird and outlandish subjects. Greg’s artwork can be provocative and at times disturbing, with a vein of fun bewilderment that runs through the entire exhibition. Sometimes political, often personal and intimate, with humour and sarcasm being central to his work.
Greg’s imagery asks questions and evokes mystery with detailed complexity of his paintings that encourages an exploration of one’s own psyche. In many compositions, subjects are undergoing a transformation, depicted as they change from one state or identity to another, displaying subjects with anything from angels with heart-shaped limbs to strange fuse-headed monsters.
Using knowledge and skills acquired in his profession in graphic design to shape his artistic vision Greg has put together a collection of images that portray varying perspectives that include love and loss, hopes and fears, lust and power, and the meaning of life. His work draws on his own personal experience personifying bizarre subjects in complex circumstance.
Greg Forster graduated from Swansea Metropolian University in 1992, since then he has worked professionally as a London based freelance illustrator, and latterly in graphic design. Now based in his native North Wales, he uses the knowledge and skills acquired in those professions to shape his artistic vision.
Greg has a keen interest in philosophy and sociology, and has always been fascinated by characteristics, key life events, and situations which compose the essence of human existence, such as growth, emotionality, aspiration, conflict, and mortality. These themes are often recurrent in his artwork and come from varying perspectives that include love and loss, hopes and fears, lust and power, and the meaning of life.
Working in a mix of contemporary mediums, such as acrylic paint, ink, spray paint, marker pen and pencil on paper, board and canvas, Greg has blended his skills in graphics and illustration with his love of bright colour and surrealism to bring about artwork that depicts life’s pleasures and predicaments in a surreal world. His use of bold colour in this surreal environment allows Greg to challenge the boundaries and explore his own obsessions.
The private view will be taking place on the 28th of April 2022 between 6pm and 9pm and we look forward to seeing you for some bright surrealism and wine!
MAD WORLD by GARY SHERIDAN
We are excited to announce Gary’s new exhibition which will take place at Chester Art Centre for 2 weeks starting on the 27th of August and will run until the 10th of September 2020. We’ve confirmed the private view for Thursday, the 27th of August, and will be equipped with face masks and disposable cups for Prosecco 🙂
It was whilst studying photography at the University of Wolverhampton in the UK that Gary found his passion for conceptual photography. His work draws on personal experience and his natural inquisitiveness in human behaviour.
He constructs a series of work from a concept, or he will see images in everyday life that speaks volumes to him. Whichever method of construction he uses, he intends the images to be multi-layered and engage the viewer thoughtfully and aesthetically. His work is vibrant, beautiful and seductive, with a vein of humour that runs through its body, just as life should be, yet life is not always a bed of roses and Gary’s work often breaks down the façade to reveal…
The Mad World exhibition features work from his latest award-winning series Waiting for the Tide to Turn, Are Friends Electric and In Dreams.
“In a mad world, only the mad are sane”
Bronze Award – Tokyo International Foto Awards, Fine Art 2019 TIFA
Bronze Award – Worlds Top 10 Fashion Photo, Fine Art, One Eyeland 2019
3 x Honorable Mention – International Photography Awards, Fine Art Series 2019 IPA
Honorable Mention – International Photography Awards, Street Photography 2019 IPA
Nominee – Fine Art Photography Awards – Conceptual 2019 FAPA
Finalist – Worlds Top 10 Fashion Photo 2018 – Oneyeland
Honorable Mention – International Photography Awards, Fine Art Portrait 2018 IPA
Leafy Chester by Steve Moon
We are delighted to announce that one of the best friends of Chester Art Centre is finally exhibiting his art with us! ‘Leafy Chester’ by Steven Moon is a very much anticipated exhibition and will run for 2 weeks between 4 February 2020 and 20 February 2020, with the private view taking place on Thursday the 6th of February.
Originally from the Wirral, Steve Moon has been living in Chester for eight years. He has done art for as long as he can remember and has been painting in oils since he was eleven. In the last ten years Steve has worked in acrylics more than oils but he enjoys experimenting with different mediums and styles. Steve says that he is not a ‘fully professional artist’ but is fortunate to have a day job that gives him half of the year off. In the last few years much of his off time Steve spent in his studio.
‘The paintings in this series are strongly influenced by the landscapes of Gustav Klimt. The techniques he used gave his landscapes a pattern like quality, for some of the works Klimt (probably) used a telescope to frame distant mountains and hillside towns as seen across alpine lakes.
I was intrigued by the idea of adapting Klimt’s ‘telescope’ landscape techniques to the not-at-all mountainous Chester. My hope was that by using binoculars and sketch pad, a camera phone, several view points and lots of careful composition planning I could create townscapes that were pattern like, true and yet also not what the eye would immediately see. All the pieces were planned in the field but painted in my studio. Further inspiration came from an article on Radio 4’s Front Row which somewhat condescendingly dubbed our city as ‘leafy Chester’, implying, I felt, that it was a touch more smug home counties than real north.
In the paintings of Grosvenor Park I’ve purposely obscured all but the plinth of the somewhat overblown statue of our park’s eponymous benefactor. Sharp eyed locals may have noticed that in one painting, in order to the portray the noble lord obscured, I first had to move his monument 20 meters into frame, a technique known as artistic license :)’