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!
Bryn Sutcliffe art sale to take place at Chester Art Centre between 5 February and 26 February 2019!
Bryn has been with us from the very beginning and we have had the joy of watching him progress with his work and get established in the international art scene. This month we are happy to announce a big art sale of Bryn’s older pieces of artwork, as well as incredibly affordable misprints (which are still absolutely gorgeous!) and limited edition prints.
“I began to experiment with many different medias at college and developed my skills using paint. At university I was encouraged to integrate conceptual ideas behind my work and hone in on particular medias which I preferred to use. Today, I mainly work in oil and acrylic paint but find acrylics lend themselves better to the spontaneous approach in my work. I specialise in figurative art in acrylic paint as I have always been fascinated and inspired by the human form. I have recently been commissioned by the Grosvenor Museum in Chester and many famous celebrities own pieces of my work.” (Bryn)
At the moment Bryn is working with Wonderland Memorabilia as well as selling a lot of his work in London and online. At the same time, many of his pieces are often on show at Chester Art Centre, where he is often busy painting or making frames ;).
This February we are happy to offer our friends a fantastic opportunity to get an original BRYN at a very affordable price! We look forward to seeing you at Chester Art Centre for a little get-together on 7 February between 6:30 and 8:30 to see some wonderful art, have a glass of wine and catch up in 2019!
We are missing summer already and wanted to bring you something cheerful this November to brighten up dark evenings with a splash of colour…:)
Professional product designer, Richard Hadfield, (Puma, BMW, Adidas) was looking for a gift for his mother Ann, a vegetarian and keen butterfly conservationist, and noticed that taxidermy butterflies in 3D frames are a very popular choice across interior design and concept stores.
“Real butterflies specimens have been a sought after interior design choice since the Victorian times. They can be seen for sale in many of the luxury design shops throughout the Netherlands and beyond. As beautiful as taxidermy butterfly specimens are, the farming of butterflies for display purposes is a little sad and outdated.”
Instead of simply buying a dead butterfly, Richard decided to follow the family tradition and make his mother a gift, a truly vegetarian-friendly photo-realistic 3D butterfly that would not only be ethical but also beautiful and long lasting. He enjoyed making it so much that in the end he made three. The butterflies were a hit and attracted so many compliments that he has launched The Butterfly Art Shop.
Ethical and beautiful, the butterflies are made using a combination of modern and traditional techniques and responsibly sourced paper. First printing using a giclee technique, then laser cutting, then traditional press moulding, followed by hand finishing. A moulded silicon body insert is added by hand, to maintain the shape of the body and then individually hand made antenna are added by one of the experienced model makers.
The butterflies are between 400%-1600% bigger than the butterfly they represent!
Real butterflies fade in colour when they die. Pinned taxidermy butterfly specimens are very dull as a result. Our handcrafted beauties have been colour-matched to the living colour of real butterflies. The museum grade, heavy-weight paper used is acid free, made in Japan to the highest standard and is from sustainable forests. The combination of this media and the ultra-chromatic ink, carries an 80yr lifetime guarantee against colour shift.
Taxidermy butterfly specimens are very delicate. Knocking, or shaking a display case can cause parts to fall off and further degrade the colour of the wings as the ‘rainbow dust’ surface falls away. Our butterfly art is strong and has the benefit that no dust and debris build up inside the inclosed display case.
“Stunning, beautifully made and it looks great hanging on my wall. This could be the start of a butterfly collection!”
“Wow, apart from the fact that they are bigger, you can hardly tell that they’re not real… that’s pretty cool.”
The exhibition will run from 24 November leading up to Christmas offering perfect Xmas presents for your loved ones.
Join us for some incredible colours, summer breeze and wine on 24 November between 4 PM and 8:30 PM!
The Unwrapped Exhibition will feature Gary Sheridan’s two most recent bodies of work from 2017 and 2018 entitled “Cluedo” and the aptly named “Unwrapped” series.
The Cluedo series of images explores the fragility and value of life. Not only how society values life but how we can value our own lives.
Inspired by William Blake’s poem The Fly, this piece flips the characters role in the board game Cluedo on its head, the living (the suspects in the murder of Mr Black in Cluedo) are the dead in this series, “My thoughtless hand has brushed away” William Blake.
The series juxtaposes the beauty of life and the seduction of aesthetics with death scenes, flipping the mind between one and the other in a blink of an eye, just as life can become death.
Thy summer’s play
My thoughtless hand
Has brushed away.
Am not I
A fly like thee?
Or art not thou
A man like me?
For I dance
And drink, and sing,
Till some blind hand
Shall brush my wing.
If thought is life
And strength and breath
And the want
Of thought is death;
Then am I
A happy fly,
If I live,
Or if I die.
In the Unwrapped series of images Gary uses similar technique and style to that in the Cluedo series, but even more vibrant, beautiful and provocative images with a vein of humour (awkward) to portray how in the perfect world, life should feel. He draws on fashion styled and cinematic scenarios/stills to ask the spectator to imagine what led to these imaginary moments in time. They tell a story of breakdowns and depression, which is often an awkward subject to discuss, but whilst it has been a subject rarely discussed there has been a steady increase in suicides worldwide over the past 45 years. Till we have got to the point where there are 50% more suicides than there were 45 years ago (reported by the World Health Organisation). We need to discuss what is happening to a world where 50% more people don’t want to live in it.
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 a natural inquisitiveness in human behaviour.
He constructs (often building sets in his studio) a series of work from a concept, such as in his recent work – Cluedo, or he will see images in everyday life that speaks volumes to him, such as the piece Arbitrate. Whichever method of construction he uses, he intends the images to be multi-layered and engage the viewer thoughtfully not just 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 often not a bed of roses and Gary’s work reveals a troubled society.
We look forward to seeing you for the private view on 12 July between 7 PM and 9 PM.
The exhibition will run until 24 July.
Capturing both familiar local landscapes and the people & places of less familiar world, this diverse, thought provoking retrospective, draws upon work previously exhibited in London, New York and Singapore.
In this first of a two part series, Andy W Langton, puts pen to paper and takes us on a visit to Burma’s Rivers & Roads Less Traveled.
I had spent the previous month in the remote hills of Northern Thailand photographing the indigenous tribes, many of whom had fled Burma over the last 30 years to avoid persecution, resettlement and civil war to forge a new life.
Initially, I was hoping to cross the border at Mae Sai into Burma’s Shan State but no such luck. Whilst access to this amazing country is rapidly opening-up, the crossing north of Chiang Rai was still closed to foreigners. Instead of a few miles into Burma I chose to take a 450mile bus ride to Bangkok and a 600mile flight to Mandalay. From Mandalay, we were to be picked up by our contact and driven overnight to Lashio, the largest of the towns in northern Shan State.
For the first week of the trip, I would be taking along Jonas, a 22year old German gap year student from Kiel on Germany’s Baltic coast. He had been working with IMPECT, (Inter Mountain Peoples Education and Culture in Thailand), as a teacher for the previous 9 months and had accompanied me on most of the field trips over my time in the Thai highlands.
I got the distinct feeling that the relationship between China and the Burma’s military junta was beginning to wane. I could see that China’s exploitation was on a huge scale, with little of the benefits filtering down to the general population.
Bordering China, Shan State carried the bulk of the trade between the two countries and if Burma was a lush garden of rich pickings, China’s presence akin to a plague of locust, consuming everything that lay before them.
Bumper to bumper trucks and lorries made their way up the steep mountain pass to reach the Shan plateau, making our progress very slow. Upon reaching the top around 2am, headlights from the hundreds of vehicles created a giant illuminated serpent upon which Burma’s food produce and considerable natural resources would exit the country.
Arriving in Lashio we spent the first night and the following day with our contacts. With no food and little water to drink or wash, their situation was a day-to-day challenge. When staying with them began to attract attention, we decided to stay the second night in a nearby hotel catering for Chinese businessmen to minimize the chance of getting picked up.
Whilst in Lashio, we were to visit nearby villages, a visit to Nam Kyan monastery orphanage was to have the greatest impact on me.
Founded and run by head monk U Sasana, this was one of two centers established to provide education, and in the case of Nam Kyan, a home for Burma’s less fortunate children.
The first thing that struck me was how happy the children were. With no immediate family and few material possessions, the children relied on the monastery for all things. Food would come from alms collected from nearby villages and local women would prepare food in the kitchen attached to the schoolhouse. From private overseas donations, work had already started on a larger, better equipment schoolhouse with the stone for the foundations coming from the nearby quarry.
An hour’s journey away and we had arrived at U Sasana’s second project, a newly constructed timber built schoolhouse that provided education to children from the surrounding villages. Under the shade of a Banyan tree in the school yard, U Sasana sat and reluctantly agreed to have his photograph taken before I joined a group of young Monks in the field at the back of the monastery.
From Lashio we were to take the early bus, which left a few hours before dawn, heading to the higher hills and more remote villages and monasteries. The steep and twisting mountain roads left little margin for error, eventually reaching Namshan and its single guesthouse as a thick mist of low cloud descended to accompany the torrential rain.
Reminding me of the Himalayan town of Darjeeling, the narrow single high street of timber houses ran for about ¼ mile until it abruptly stopped. A devastating fire the year before had destroyed a large section of the upper high street as strong winds fanned the flames that tore through the tinder dry houses. An appeal had been made throughout Shan state and enough money collected from other villages to rebuild, this time in brick and concrete. Towards the highest section of the town, Namshan monastery appeared out of the mist as we made our way up the hill.
As a reminder that we were in country in the grip of civil war, an open truck loaded with Ta’ang National Liberation Army (TNLA) soldiers drove past belching diesel fumes. As the truck mounted machine gun was swung in my direction it sent a clear message that they were in control of this particular place and taking a photograph wasn’t the best decision. There’s a time and a place for pointing a camera, this wasn’t one. To the North in Kachin State, the Kachin Independence Army (KIA) where in the midst of savage fighting with government troops. Rarely if ever reported to the outside world a chance meeting with a British conflict photographer a few days earlier had given me an insight into what was going on. His beaten up Nikon and the look you get when you’ve been in a war zone for a year said as much as his grim accounts.
Towards the highest section of the town, Namshan monastery appeared out of the mist. Probably due to the rain, which was now bouncing off the ground, the monastery appeared to be deserted. Eventually we located the Abbot and asked if we could take a look around, Jonas stayed and joined the Abbot for tea whilst I continued to have a look around. A large dormitory was located at the far end of the courtyard, I knocked on the door and waited.
As the double doors opened, a group of novice monks came to see who the stranger was. Inside, single beds lined the long narrow dormitory and all eyes were immediately on me, the whole place then irrupted in excitement. Taking a packet of boiled sweets out of my bag brought from Singapore there was soon a mad scramble.
In the doorway, umbrellas stood in a large earthenware pot. By now the monsoon rain was so heavy that torrents poured off the roofs and through the gaps between the buildings. Gesturing for them to come outside they eventually ventured out and the courtyard became a waterpark in the torrential rain.
With the boys heading back inside to change into dry robes I joined Jonas and the Abbot for some tea. As with monk U Sasana, the Abbots English was flawless and we chatted about everything from Premier league football to Aung San Suu Kyi.
We had been told that further up the valley, beyond some truly enormous Banyan tree’s, stood Zetonhone monastery. Our arrival would correspond with the new moon on the 16th and herald the start of Kason Nyaung Ye Thun, Buddha’s birth, enlightenment and passing to Nirvana.
Arriving unannounced, we were immediately greeted as special guests and made to feel at home whilst daily life continued as normal. The monks continued with building improvements, novice monks had their lessons with meditation and prayers throughout the day. During recreational time, novice monks played football and Chin Lone (kick volleyball), whilst the older monks walked around the hillside tea gardens that surrounded the monastery on all sides. After the communal dinner we climbed the hill overlooking the monastery and watched a fiery red sun go down, silhouetting the Stupas to make a perfect sunset.
Our return journey to Lashio, although downhill all the way, was a much more uncomfortable experience. The bus we had paid for never arrived which meant a 7hr journey in a cattle truck with 50 others which was the more common mode of transport.
With no perceptible suspension and poor brakes, the journey did have its moments of excitement. After about 4 hours we eventually stopped for a welcome break. By this time, I was having difficulty in bending my back and as we walked around the front of the truck Jonas dropped his wallet. Bending down to pick it up, I used the open cab of the truck as a support as a gust of wind slammed the door on the back of my hand. Thrusting the wallet at Jonas, I continued walking telling him I was going to the roadside bathroom, a few steps later I passed out.
Flat on my back on the mountain road, traffic drove around the star shaped foreigner. Jonas had seen me and assumed I was stretching out my back and went off to get some noodles for breakfast. Sometime later I began to hear birdsong and could see blurred figures looking down at me ‘Sir, truck leaving’. Struggling to my feet I headed back and met Jonas who still hadn’t realised I wasn’t stretching out my back, or taking a roadside nap.
Picking up some of the luggage we had left at the Lashio safe house we boarded the overnight bus to Rangoon, a more comfortable 13hour journey lay ahead. Jonas was to catch his flight back to Bangkok and I was heading off to Sittwe on Burma’s west coast for the next stage of my journey along Burma’s Rivers & Roads Less Traveled’.
Andy’s exhibition will run from 4 May until 15 May – make sure it’s in your diary! 🙂
Dear artists and friends of Chester Art Centre,
Thank you for participating in Chester Art Centre’s Open Exhibition this year! Our apologies for not being in touch – we have had a busy year, filled with many creative projects, but now all of the votes for the competition have been counted and we are pleased to announce the winners!
The ceremony will take place on the 23rd November, 2017 at 6.30pm – 8.30pm.
The party – to which all are invited – will start at 6.30pm, with the awards presented to the winners at 7.30pm.
The prints that were on display, but have not sold, are available to purchase by the artists at a discounted price of:
£5 per print, unframed or £12 per print, framed. (This is to cover some of our costs involved in organising and running the exhibition.) Alternatively, We are happy to keep displaying the work on rotation as and when possible. However, We cannot guarantee that the work will regularly be on display, as we have a lot of exhibition bookings.
Here are our winners for the Watercolour category:
Sarah Adams – ‘Don’t Look Back’
Lisa Jayne Holmes – Stag
Susan Welsby – Bromeliad
The winners for the Oils/Acrylics category are:
Mark Funge – Koi
Christopher Furminger – Two Men Kissing
Kathrine Geoghegan – Rosebay Willowherb
The winners for our Photography category are:
John Cockshaw – York Minster Interior
Kim Keogh – Yellow
Matthew Martin – Paradise
Here are our winners for the Digital Art category:
Philip McKay – Time That Never Was
Jenny Meehan – Leap of Faith
Jacob Skeldon – Scan 1
A huge congratulations to all of the winners, and another massive thank you to everyone who participated. We are planning to run another open exhibition like this next year, but on a smaller scale and only with proven venues, in order to achieve the best experience for everyone involved.
We are looking forward to seeing everybody at Chester Art Centre to celebrate the success of our Open Exhibition and meet the winners and all of the participating artists!
We are incredibly proud to be a part of Lord David Lo Russo’s 2017 world tour which begins in the UK!
EXHIBITION EXTENDED due to popular demand!
Born in Italy, David Lo Russo grew up in Belgium eventually settling in the Jura in 2007. Son of an Italian Royal, David discovered his passion for drawing at a tender age mastering a pastel technique using only his hands. Throughout his creative career, David has had an unwavering devotion to his art. Inspired by his travels across borders, David’s art continues to evolve mirroring his free spirit. In 2015, David unveiled his first collection: “The kingdom of the Jura”, after a successful reception the artist unveiled a second edition, “Circus is an art” in exhibitions across Europe. David is the owner of a hotel/restaurant in France and a pasta restaurant in Switzerland, where all the interior decoration was painted by hand by the artist himself!
With his new collection ‘The kingdom of the Jura Volume II’ David starts his 2017 world tour in the UK.
DO NOT MISS!!!
Take a look at David’s website to see more of his work!