Focus: Artist Interview

ARTIST:: GRACE BRISTO

 

1. Why did you choose photography as your medium? 

For the first 4 years in education studying photography, I actually really hated the technical side of photography, I just couldn't get my head around it all but I loved what a photograph could tell you/not tell you. I tried art in GCSE and I just did not feel I was creative enough to create what I wanted too but it was different with photography (once I got the hang of the settings) and now I love it!

 

2. How do you choose the subject of your photograph?

I normally know the kind of look I want to photograph, so I'll just look for that. It's usually if someone/something captures my attention. 

 

3. What is your creative process/routine like?

Usually I struggle to find ideas for the first few days, then I'll cry in frustration, then something will usually come to me in the shower or something. Then once I've got an idea, you can't stop me! I feel like i'm very conceptual with my ideas, I find it easier if things have a meaning behind them rather than taking images for the sake of taking images.

 

4. What is challenging about photography?

Getting yourself out there, getting known and having your own unique style. Anyone can take a good photograph these days, especially with our evergrowing technology. You're competing with everyone!

 

5. Where do you see your style heading in the future?

I'm not sure, I started of with digital black and white photography, and a few years later I'm really into my colour 35mm film. I would love to know where I end up, however I do know I am looking to start trying more editorial/fashion based images!

 

6.Tell me about "Unladylike" 

'Unladylike' started when one time my mum told me to act more ladylike. I started to question what ladylike even meant. This was when feminism started to become very apparent on social media and I decided to look more into what was expected of women, not just now but also in the past. I found it extremely interesting so that fueled my motivation to make images. I wanted to subtly photograph things that i've experienced people be prejudice towards in the past, from body hair to posture. 

 

7. What effect do you think "Unladylike" has on the viewer and what do you hope it will achieve? 

I wanted to create a reaction, negative or positive, I don't mind as long as it got the viewer thinking. I'd ideally hope the viewer would question their own personal relationship on their expections with women, I also thought about doing the opposite and doing a male version. As I am well aware of the expections towards men, but maybe thats a project for the future.

Instagram: gracebristo

website: www.gracebristophotography.co.uk

Interview by Dominique Mitchell (Writer in Residence)

International Postcard Show: Artist Interview

ARTIST: NICKI MCNANEY

I lecture at the University of Derby in Illustration and set up the Wooden Dog Press with my friend & colleague, illustrator, Richard Levesley, to document some of our professional practice and to share our common interest in drawing, storytelling, and printmaking.

The Night Siren print derived from an artist book I have been creating for the Pages Book Fair 2017, Leeds which initially was inspired by the title “ Mermaids are Always Welcome” and the curious nature of the mythical creaturese and lure of the mermaids to sea fairing sailors. I am interested in creating a backstory and narrative to even a simple illustration and hope that the audience will also create their own interpretation of what they feel the characters and environments communicate.

My work consists of a series of personal and collaborative illustration projects in which I investigate aspects of artifacts, collections, curation and curiosity. My most recent work creates visual hybrids where one element is shown in proximity or even blended with another object or character. I invite people to consider their own narrative and to react to what they are shown. My work aims to create curiosity from the ordinary and less seen. I test the notion that the collection of objects, character and the environment they exist in, is thought provoking and that narrative value is subjective.

I prefer to work in silkscreen, mono-print and collage, as the processes offer the opportunity to create textures, mark making and layering of colour that I seek to enhance the uniqueness and individuality of the publications and the final prints. I am interested in challenging traditional processes and exploring their application in artists book, print and in this case the postcard format.

 

Website: www.woodendogpress.ac.uk

Website: http://www.derby.ac.uk

Twitter @derbyillustrate

Interview by Dominique Mitchell (Writer in Residence)

International Postcard Show: Artist Interview

ARTIST:: ADAM BRANT

 

Introduce yourself and your art.

I’m a visual artist specialising in painting and drawing.  My work explores the relationship between the past, present and future.  I’m influenced by the tradition of still-life painting, and use objects and environments as starting-points to create images which investigate space and time.

 

I graduated with a Fine Art degree in 2002 from the University of Hull (Scarborough Campus).  I can recommend studying by the seaside – it’s as fun as it sounds!

 

During my studies I was lucky enough to spend a month at the Cyprus College of Art as part of a student exchange programme.  Finding inspiration in the ways the modern world impacted the ancient history of the island helped me to establish my identity as an artist.

 

My art practice can generally be divided into two work streams:

-  Conceptual series of work created in response to a theme (over months and years)

- Observational one-off work created in response to an object or image (over a few days).

 

Where/How did you develop the idea for your postcard?

‘Taut’ was inspired by receiving a Spirograph set as a Christmas present.  I often receive art related gifts (including art materials and books, as well as completely unexpected items such as an Etch A Sketch and the Spirograph!).

 

The idea for the postcard developed after seeing the Spirograph back in the art studio alongside other more traditional artist materials.

 

What was your intention for your postcard?

Over recent years I’ve been exploring different ways to combine painting and drawing within a single art work.  The intention was to challenge myself to use the Spirograph as the starting-point for the postcard as part of this exploration.  I didn’t use a Spirograph when I was young (I’m discounting trying out my sisters when she wasn’t looking!), so the aim was to see what I could make out of my unskilled efforts in using this new tool.

 

Is this your first exhibition and if yes, how do you feel about it?

This is not my first exhibition, but it is the first time my work is being exhibited in 2017!  It’s always exciting to be involved in a group show and see your art alongside the work of others.  It’s also a great way to connect with like-minded and supportive creative people.

 

My work has been exhibited in various locations across the UK, as well as in Norway and America (and is currently more well-travelled than I am!).

 

It can be daunting getting your work out there. I’ve been both successful and unsuccessful when submitting work for exhibition.  My advice to anybody creating art work is:

-  Do it because you love it.  If your work becomes recognised and appreciated by others that is great, but don’t let be the reason you produce work

-  Don’t be disillusioned if your work isn’t always successful.  Learn from previous experiences and stay inspired – you never know what exciting opportunities that next piece of work might lead you to…

 

Does your postcard have any connection to today’s world?

My work expresses experiences of space and time, and how these experiences impact how we connect to the world around us.

 

I join objects that already exist in the world from the past and present together for the first time.  By expressing my personal response to that connection, a new object is created with its own future in the world.  ‘Taut’ is no exception and represents:

-  The past (a plastic monster figure collected from a cereal box as a child)

-  The present (the Spirograph received as a Christmas present)

- The future (the postcard itself).

 

What artists inspire you?

I’m inspired by many different artists but if I had to pick one it would have to be Jenny Saville.  You can get a sense of the history of painting within Saville’s work so it also reminds me of other artists who inspire me such as Seventeenth century Dutch still-life painters, Picasso, and Lucien Freud.

 

The commitment of Saville to painting and drawing techniques fascinates me.  I treated myself to an expensive book about her work many years ago (I couldn’t really afford at the time, but it was a great investment). It has fantastic close-up photographs of the brushwork within her paintings.

 

I always turn to this book whenever something isn’t going well with my own work, and it usually leads me to resolving whatever artistic challenge I was facing.

 

What research do you do for your art works?

Research for my art work tends to be focused on local history, supernatural phenomenon, and my day-to-date interactions with the world around me.  This informs the theory of my work and provides visual inspiration.

 

My methods of researching vary - from looking-up information on the intranet, to visiting local libraries, to taking photographs of places I visit.

 

I love stationery so have more notebooks than is necessary to write down ideas and record information.  I tend to capture visual research information using a digital or phone camera as it is so convenient.  These have gradually replaced keeping a more traditional sketchbook.

 

I aspire to get back to keeping a sketchbook as they are a great archive of source material (I still refer to ideas from sketchbooks I created during my student days).

 

Do you have a creative routine/pattern?

I have a full-time office job to ensure the bills are paid so my art practice is planned around this.  It can be challenging juggling work, family and social commitments with time spent in the art studio.  Finding a healthy balance isn’t always easy.

 

I try to ensure I have a balanced schedule of time in the studio with time spent away from my art work.  Despite this I do still sometimes fall victim to deadline pressures (and have been known to stay up for 24 hours to get an art work finished!).

 

In the past I would feel guilty about not producing art work at every opportunity.  Now I have a more realistic routine of making sure I do at least one activity related to my art practice each day.  This can range from:

-  A few minutes spent updating my website or social media pages

-  A few hours spent researching concepts or sketching out ideas

-  A whole a day spent totally absorbed in painting a canvas.

 

It’s amazing what progress can be made from even doing only one task each day.

 

What are you trying to communicate with your postcard?

There isn’t a specific message I hope to communicate with ‘Taut’, but hope people can relate to the postcard in some way whether that be:

- Recalling memories of using a Spirograph

-  Wondering what the drawn figure and colours represent

-  Thinking about how the ink and paint has been applied to the paper.

 

I often use one-word titles to suggest rather than describe what the work expresses about my own experiences.  I hope people can take away something from my work that makes them challenge and reconsider their preconceptions.

 

You can discover more about my work via the following links:

Website: www.adambrant.co.uk

Facebook: Adam Brant – visual artist (www.facebook.com/abrantartist/)

Twitter: @brantus (www.twitter.com/brantus)

Instagram: @a_brant_artist (www.instagram.com/a_brant_artist)

International Postcard Show: Artist Interview

ARTIST: MARY DIXON

 

Introduce yourself and your art.

I live in Northern NSW in Australia. Printmaking is my main interest at present, both intaglio and relief.

 

Where/How did you develop the idea for your postcard?

There are still many mangroves where I live.  They are dark and mysterious and full of marine creatures but further north there may even be crocodiles.  
 

What was your intention for your postcard?

I want to evoke a feeling of subtle threat and attraction of the mangroves.

 

Does your postcard have any connection to today’s world?

Because of the continued coastal development mangroves are disappearing.  As well as being interesting they are also very important places for the birth and development of many species of fish.

Which artists inspire you?

Egon Schiele, Klimt, Kentridge, Munakata, Hokusai

 

What research do you do for your art works?

I walk through the area and take numerous photos as well as sketches. I study some of the techniques used by master printers.

 

nterview by Dominique Mitchell (Writer in Residence)

International Postcard Show: Artist Interview

ARTIST: DAWN UNDERWOOD

 

Introduce yourself and your art.

Hello, my name is Dawn and I am a still life painter living in London. My work investigates still life objects often re-painting the same object in order to learn how to visually describe them in, what I hope is, an interesting and engaging way for the viewer.

 

Where/How did you develop the idea for your postcard?

I have become a bit obsessed with painting oranges and other fruits at the moment so this orange painting is one of many. I find painting this small size really challenging which is one of the things that attracted me to entering some work into this exhibition.

 

What was it about the subject/content of your postcard that enticed you?

If you look really closely oranges are not very orange.

 

What artists inspire you?

I have always loved impressionist painters and feel very lucky to be able to live in here and be able to visit the National Gallery often to view some incredible impressionist pieces.

 

Do you have a creative routine/pattern?

Overthinking, then wine and then there is a point where you just have to get on with the painting!


Instagram: @dawnuart

 

Interview by Dominique Mitchell (Writer in Residence)

a119.JPG

International Postcard Show: Artist Interview

ARTIST: NATALIE ANNE YOSTEN

 

Introduce yourself and your art.

My name is Natalie Anne Yosten, and my postcard is called Spirits Rising.

    

Where/How did you develop the idea for your postcard?

I was at my first Nebraska Husker Football game (American Football), and the balloons were released during half-time. It’s usually the time to get the home team reeved up for the next half of the game, or just to keep all the fans amused. It was a perfect moment, because the sun was about to set below the stadium. I took a picture on my Samsung Galaxy phone, right when the light was shimmering off the balloons as they rose to touch the light. It was a beautiful, exciting, and delightful moment! The crowd’s spirits seem to rise with the balloons all in a great cheer!

 

What  was your intention for your postcard?

To convey the beauty, passion, and spirit of the moment.

    

Is this your first exhibition and if yes, how do you feel about it?

This is my very first exhibition, and I’m extremely nervous and excited! To do it on an international level makes me nervous, because there are so many wonderous things in the world. If my work does okay, then I will be very pleased.

 

What was it about the subject/content of your postcard that enticed you?

It may be portrayed as whimsical or perceived a bit childishly, but I chose the balloons as a moment that could be from any part of the world. We all have events and festivals where joy is taken, and spirits rise in fervor to the music and the sounds from fellow participants! The world can be filled with horror, but for a moment it can be so light and beautiful!

 

Does your postcard have any connection to today’s world?

At the moment I would like to believe this would be an escaping moment most people in the world would cling to. Just a fleeting moment of joy, and I think we all try to hold the good times as long as we can. Keep them precious while we experience them, and as we try to recall them in memory. Our world is a grave place, and we all want to rise above the bad things.

 

What artists inspire you?

Well, I have always liked Josephine Wall’s Art, but for photography specifically I like Steve McCurry and Margaret Bourke-White.

 

What research do you do for your art works?

I will admit, I don’t research very much for my art work. When it comes to Photography I have become accustomed to just trying to capture the moment when I see a good one.

My inspiration usually comes when I am with friends, family, or in nature. I just snap a shot at what I think is good. I have learned about lighting, angles to pose in, and am trying to do more to create specific views. I still believe that many good shots happen on their own.

 

Do you have a creative routine/pattern?

No, I’m a hopeless amateur, and haven’t been able to get a good creative routine down. For now, I work off of the pressure of the deadline or by just being patient. Good times to take a photograph that doesn’t have to be edited are rare. I wait patiently, watching, camera in hand for those moments.

 

What are you trying to communicate with your postcard?

I try to convey with my postcards the feelings or thoughts that I have in the moment. I just hope that they are relatable enough for most people to understand. I prefer to take people out of their heads for a second, and make them see my point of view.

Interview by Dominique Mitchell (Writer in Residence)

Spirits Rising 

Spirits Rising 

International Postcard Show: Artist Interview

ARTIST: JENNIFER YIP

 

  I am a Year 2 Fine Art student of the University of Lincoln. My artworks centred around the beauty of everyday life and specific colours of cities. Through a delicate style of drawing and painting, my works aimed to capture a particular moment in our daily lives, as well as to raise people’s awareness to every object and scenery which we sometimes overlooked.

 

 As an international student studying in the UK, I often yearn to be home, Hong Kong. It was perhaps of the feeling of homesickness which inspired the idea of my postcard. The particular use of bright colours may be related to the famous night view of Hong Kong, as well as to link with personal experiences and memories.

 

Following the rapid development of our surroundings, fast-paced living habits appeared to dominate our everyday lives. By focusing on unnoticeable characteristics and features of a local area, I would like to remind, as well to encourage our society to pause and admire the pleasantness of every objects or scenery.

 

It is my first time to participate in an exhibition and I am feeling very excited about it. Not only does the exhibition offer me a chance to share my artwork with a wider audience, but as well to be involved in opportunities of a professional context, which may help in building up confidence and gaining experiences.

 

As my artworks relate to themes such as everyday lives and memories, all illustrations of scenes involved the process of visiting different places in person. During conversations with the local people, it allowed a better understanding of the area and its surroundings. With more knowledge of the background and history of site, a more suitable choice of media may be used to demonstrate a better representation.

Interview by Dominique Mitchell (Writer in Residence)

Treasure Hunt, Hong Kong

Treasure Hunt, Hong Kong

International Postcard Show: Artist Interview

ARTIST: JAMES SUTTON

 

Introduce yourself and your art.

My name is James Sutton and this is my postcard 'Marble Black & White'.

 

Where/How did you develop the idea for your postcard?

I've been working on marbling techniques throughout 2016, in my flat where I make space for my art. This was done through numerous types of inks and paper, along with some digital cleaning up for the final outcomes.

 

What was your intention for your postcard?

The intention I guess is to look, difficult perhaps because of it's size. With marbling I always had the intention for viewers to look at the works and find shapes and ideas within them for themselves.

 

What was it about the subject/content of your postcard that enticed you?

Marbling has interested me for a while now, with the intricate details and experimental fragility it offers when you implement it. The idea of unknowing how the end piece will look always enticed me along with the details you find in the small spaces with marbling. Like worlds within worlds you can look at pieces again and again to find new parts that hold your eye.

 

What artists inspire you?

Artists that I look at a lot include Rene Almanza, Doze Green and Dave Kinsey to name some contemporary artists that I have come to follow much more lately. I follow things like Juxtapoz on Instagram along with more generic art forums that always show new and inspiring works. There's so much art out there on display nowadays with Instagram, Pinterest etc that show daily amazing things it's sometimes overwhelming, but always inspiring.

 

Do you have a creative routine/pattern?

My work has altered a lot as I look to create new ideas and expand in styles. It usually comes from drawing or painting stuff continuously, having breaks from work always brings new ideas and practises to the front. I wouldn't be sure on patterns but routines fall into researching ideas and talking to others, thankfully my local in Lincoln has a group of creative individuals that work and drink in there. When I create it's in my lounge with a dedicated area where I have music constantly on. Instrumental musical works that let you flow with creativity and don't distract.

Facebook : https://www.facebook.com/1cosmicj/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/1cosmic_j/

Interview by Dominique Mitchell (Writer in Residence)

Marble black and white

Marble black and white

International Postcard Show:: International Artist Interview

ARTIST:: HÉLÈNE BAUTISTA

 

Introduce yourself and your art.

I’m an illustrator, specialised in engraving and I my predilection is for lino-cutting when I have to create illustrations for books or posters.

 

Where/How did you develop the idea for your postcard?  What was your intention for your postcard?

 This idea of a an hot-air balloon flying in the sky came first for a book cover for « Cinq semaines en ballon’, the Jules Verne’s novel, and I made a large linocut print for it. When I saw the poster of the Surface Gallery calling for artists, I thought immediately of travels all around the world, and I wanted, by creating a postcard for it, to invite people to a « rêverie » . That’s why I choosed the hot-air balloon, as an unusual way for travelling, and a poetic one. I made a very small lino plate then to create this postcard, which I printed in traditional ways.

 

Is this your first exhibition and if yes, how do you feel about it?

It isn’t my first exhibition, but I feel very happy about it! I usually work in larger format than postcard, but this experience for Surface Gallery introduced me to it and I like it very much. The ones I created since are not really in connection to today’s world. I prefer the relation with books traditions, as Ex Libris for instance.

 

What artists inspire you?

Félix Vallotton, Daumier, Grandville, Doré as engravers, but I’m very much inspired by old movies for composition and contrasts between black and white, and my ideas often come from literature more than other painters or engravers.

 

What research do you do for your art works?

I sketch a lot, and read, read, read.

 

Do you have a creative routine/pattern?

I often sketch and draw when I’m in common transports, but without searching for anything in particular. Then, I feel I’ve got an image in my mind but I know I have to wait till it comes from itself. Music often helps it to do so, and then I make the drawing I’ll use to create the plate. This part takes hours, listening to music or enjoying silence. When the plate is ready, I prepare the studio for printing, which is a part I love too, especially when the first print reveal if the plate is good.

 

What are you trying to communicate with your postcard?

In my postcards, as in larger formats, I try to open the spectator to his own imagination by sharing mine, and to let him/her free to imagine a story or to be contemplative.

Interview by Dominique Mitchell (Writer in Residence)

 

Flying  

Flying

 

International Postcard Show: Artist Interview

ARTIST: ROSA QUINTANA

 

Introduce yourself and your art.

I am a multi disciplinary visual artist based out of Vancouver, Canada but originally from South America. My work encompasses self motivated research into art history and the history of extinctions, specifically the extinctions of birds. And of course the present day discourse of environmental and political issues that pertain to my own backyard, the north west coast of north America.

 

Where/How did you develop the idea for your postcard?

The idea for the postcard this year comes from an ongoing series of work in my studio. It has in mind questions and concerns about the state of the oceans, climate change and design aspects.

 

What was your intention for your postcard?

The postcard sent is part of my ongoing Apocalypse Now series which varies in size. The intention in this postcard is to point out one idea or one concept, to focus and streamline a thought process.

 

 Is this your first exhibition and if yes, how do you feel about it?

This is my 3rd year submitting postcards to this show, I have been exhibiting in Canada and abroad for approx 25 years.

 

What was it about the subject/content of your postcard that enticed you?

I have been experimenting with more graphic visuals as oppose to expressionistic approaches to my work to convey a cleaner and at times more ambiguous conceptual message.

 

Does your postcard have any connection to today’s world?

Yes, this postcard is my very much about today’s world and all its trouble and beauty at the same time.

 

What artists inspire you?

Francis Bacon, Demian Flores, Bill Reid, Diego Rivera, Bosch, Picasso, Brigitte Riley, Brian Yungen, the list is actually uncountable. I would like to think that there is something in most art works that can be inspiring and that I can learn from. The courage and perseverance it takes to produce and finish an art work is inspiring in itself.

 

What research do you do for your art works?

Museums and libraries are my weakness, my favorite things are to leaf through large pictorial books and view historical and biographical artist documentaries.

 

Do you have a creative routine/pattern?

My goal is to spend at least 4  hours and up to 12 hours in the studio as many days of the week as possible, painting or researching or studying a subject or artists work.

 

What are you trying to communicate with your postcard?

This postcard in particular is playing with visual concepts and graphic representation. Maybe I am trying to make sure everyone knows that there are still killer whales out there and that there is still hope.

 

Interview by Dominique Mitchell (Writer in Residence)

Apocalypse Now #4 After A Killer Whale

Apocalypse Now #4 After A Killer Whale

International Postcard Show:: Artist Interview

ARTIST:: Jake Francis

 

What was the intention for your postcard?

To terrorise, then humour, then mourn, then move on, then think about joining one of those dating sites with the free trial.

Where/How did you develop the idea for your postcard?

The idea came from the unfortunate truths of today’s national media and the manipulation within it. In each map, the perceived ‘priorities’ of that country are exacerbated and visualised - depicting the fickle and jaded output of our so called ‘informers’.

Introduce yourself and your art.

My art is the visual embodiment of the phrase ‘nice try’ - it is very much the weak air freshener to my inadequacy - the bog brush to my skidmarks.

Does your postcard have any connection to today’s world?

Unfortunately, yes.

What artists inspire you?

I take much of my inspiration from comedians and authors - writers like Chris Morris and Ryan Holiday have a way of recording the horrors of our modern culture without stagnation and dilution. We should know the disgraces of our media, but not without a rightful giggle.

Do you have a creative routine/pattern?

My ideas come to fruition around 10 am each morning - ironically the same time I have a bowel movement.  


Interview by Dominique Mitchell (Writer in Residence)

Priorities: ISIS

Priorities: ISIS

International Postcard Show: Set Up

We're nearly ready.

Here at Surface Gallery we are buzzing away painting, sweeping, mopping, curating, folding, hammering, nailing, sanding, typing, photographing, organising and, of course, drinking copious amounts of tea in order to get the International Postcard Show all set up and ready to go for opening night which is this Friday 13th at 6pm.

The International Postcard Show 2017 features over 460 unique pieces of art from artists all over the world. From over the road in Sneinton, Nottingham to the other side of the planet in Western Australia to just over the channel in the Netherlands. 

Opening night will be an opportunity to grab a beer or a glass of wine, chat with artists and other locals whilst perusing these fabulous mini-masterpieces. Some of these mini-masterpieces are for sale and would make fantastic gifts or the start of a budding art collection!

We look forward to seeing you!

 

A tweet treat

A tweet treat

Beginning to curate the postcards

Beginning to curate the postcards

Applying the finishing touches

Applying the finishing touches

Getting all those shelves up.

Getting all those shelves up.

Rows upon rows of mini-masterpieces.

Rows upon rows of mini-masterpieces.

Written by Dominique Mitchell (Writer in Residence)

International Postcard Show Press Release

International Postcard Show 2017

January 14th – February 11th

Opening Night : Friday 13th January, 18.00-21.00

 

Surface Gallery is excited to welcome back the International Postcard Show. This vibrant, long-running exhibition is a highly popular feature of our calendar, and includes hundreds of original artworks from established and aspiring artists from all over the world. All submissions are included, from painting and print through to textiles and illustration, creating a wonderfully eclectic mix of artwork.

Last year the International Postcard Show saw record submissions. “500 funny, pretty, political, surreal and rude examples of postcard-sized artworks’’ noted the Nottingham Post of last year’s show. ‘’The 'international' tag attached to the exhibition is deserved, entries have come in from as far afield as Dubai, the USA, Canada and Hong Kong.’’ 2017 looks set to be our largest Postcard Show to date with submissions coming in from far and wide.

All artwork is priced at £15, so this is a fantastic opportunity for visitors and aspiring art collectors to snap up an original work of art at an affordable price.

All participating artists will have the opportunity to exchange their postcard with another artist selected at random at the end of the exhibition. We hope that this exchange will help foster new connections and encourage communication among artists from diverse backgrounds and from different parts of the world.

A panel of Surface Gallery judges will select three prize winners. The prizes include a £50 first prize, a piece of Keishi Jewellery as second prize, and a Creative Quarter goodie bag for Best Local Artist. The People’s Prize is chosen by our visitors who will have the opportunity to vote for their favourite artwork. The People’s Prize will be an exhibition in the Surface Gallery’s alternative artspace, Le Loovre.

Deadline for submissions: 6pm, Friday 6th January 2017

During the exhibition, Paul Henegan and Chiara Dellerba will be delivering a print-making workshop, where participants will be able to make their own postcard. The workshop will take place on Saturday 21st January, and will cost £17.50 including materials. On Saturday 28th January, Maggie Smith will be running a textiles workshop from 11am-2pm where you can learn how to use natural dyes on fabrics. The workshop will cost £30, materials are included.

The International Postcard Show 2017 opens in the Main Gallery in conjunction with Emerge:

University of Lincoln Fine Art Exhibition, which will take place in the Project Space. As always,

there will be a donations bar with ales from local brewery, Springhead.

 

Opening Hours:

Opening: Friday 13th January, 18:00 - 21:00

Exhibition Dates: 14th January - 11th February

Tuesday to Friday: 12:00 to 18:00

Saturday: 11:00 to 17:00

 

16 Southwell Road, Nottingham, NG1 1DL

 

www.surfacegallery.org/opportunities

info@surfacegallery.org

Facebook: www.facebook.com/surfacegallery

Twitter: @surfacegallery

Instagram: @surfacegallery

 

 

Re:Surface : Interview with the artist

ARTIST: REBECCA PEAREY

 

What inspires you to create and does your work reflect this?

Nature normally inspires me to create my work, as I mostly draw animals and plants. I think my work definitely does reflect this however I'd like to broaden what I normally draw!

 

What medium do you primarily work

 I use fine liners of various sizes for my work.

 

 How do you work/create?

I create small, detailed illustrations in a pointillist style, or sometimes linework - almost like tattoo designs. I like to use small strokes or marks to create an overall much larger, detailed piece.

What do you like about your work?

I really like how detailed my work can be for someone who can be very, very impatient!

What do you see for you in the future?

In the future I'd love to be able to be a freelance illustrator selling my work and commissions part time, while working in the graphic design industry - however I'm not sure which field yet!

 

Explain what you do in 100 words

My piece(s) at Re:Surface are a collection of my favourite drawings I've done over the past year or so, showing the style I like to work in and what I sell on Etsy.

 

 

 

Photo Credit: Sam Lindley

Photo Credit: Sam Lindley

Re:Surface : Interview with the artist

ARTIST: PETE ABRAHART

 

What inspires you to create and does your work reflect this?

My paintings come from my love of music and the heroes and icons I hold dear to my heart.

 

How do you work/create?

I have two areas of work - acrylic and collage icon paintings and biro/correction fluid scribbles

 

Explain what you do in 100 words.

I paint my portraits on A3 card, mostly in black and white and then collage them against a 16x20" art board with brown paper frame. After this I give the artboard a distressed effect with acrylic paint. I also distress the brown paper frame either with water and paint and then tear in to the frame or simply distress it with black acrylic paint depending on the musical artist and their life. I like to give each one a separate colour background that I feel represents them in some way also. I guess this is just a form of double framing and image.

 

What do you like about your work?

I like how my paintings are not just simply straight portraits - each one has it's own personality and double framing to bring it to life. This is something I don't plan for and although the black and white portrait itself is highly planned and measured the background and frame is very much an organic process.

 

What do you see for you in the future?

I think probably more of the same to be honest. I'm only really a hobby painter but love the work I produce. I always paint with the thought in mind that if I don't sell the pieces I produce I'm more than happy to hang them in my own home! My work also gets me some commission work too which is really a boost for my enthusiasm in creating work.

 

A few words about your piece at Re:Surface.

 

My seven pieces at Re:Surface represent the past six months of my life and work but my favourite being "Silent Sense of Content" the Amy Winehouse portrait - this piece was to commemorate five years since her death on the 23rd July. I wrote lyrics from my favourite song of hers around the outside and slightly changed some of the words to make it more personal to me. Amy Winehouse is someone I had the pleasure to meet many years back and I feel it is the most important piece in my collection as my own personal tribute.

 

 

photo: Sam Lindley

photo: Sam Lindley

Re:Surface : Interview with the Artist

ARTIST: DOMINIQUE MITCHELL

 

What medium do you primarily work with and how did you get into it?

I work with all different types of yarn, alpaca, wool, cotton, acrylic - I like to experiment to see how the material affects the finished product in terms of density, fluidity, colour, size and texture. I constantly switch back and forth between crochet and knitting. It depends on what I am creating whether I crochet it or whether I knit it. 

I've always wanted to create but I was useless at drawing and painting - the traditional arts -and then during my second year I picked up a crochet hook sat in front of youtube and voila. I realised that I could express my creativity through the medium of yarn and I have never looked back.   

What will you be exhibiting at Re:Surface?

I am exhibiting two pieces in Re:Surface. One is an experimental crochet canvas adorned with brightly coloured flowers and quirky shapes. The other is a tubular knitted scarf that features patterns that I've used from around the internet and ones that I have designed myself. I started knitting this scarf in November 2015 whilst I was travelling in Romania. I wanted something to keep me busy on long coach rides or nights in at the hostel. I knitted throughout Romania, Bratislava, Vienna, Germany and Amsterdam and I'm still knitting it today. I don't think I want to finish. Ill just keep adding to it year after year letting it grow row by knitted row.  

What inspires you to create? 

I'm inspired by everything and anything - by colours in a sunset,  a conversation with a friend, a piece of art, an instagram post, a story. I'll note it down for future use. Sometimes I'm simply inspired by an emptiness that I want to fill, a space on my wall or a product that doesn't exist. Then I like to spend time sketching and designing to see how I could create something to fill that space.

 

What do you see for you in the future?

Over the next year I'm looking to develop myself and my work further by creating more pieces, functional and artistic. Developing my crochet and knitting skills by learning new and more complex techniques. I'd like to begin to work on larger 3D pieces and some items of clothing.

Keep In Touch

www.myotherloves.wordpress.com

Instagram: dominiquekmitchell

Photo Credit: Sam Lindley

Photo Credit: Sam Lindley

Re:Surface : Interview with the Artist

Artist: Phoebe Joy

 

What inspires you to create and does your work reflect this?

Whilst at university I came across the Blaschka's, a nineteenth century father and son duo who created replicas of flowers and sea creatures using glass. I was particularly taken by the models of microscopic sea creatures which are intricately detailed. Although I don't aim to create any particular specimen in particular, I create pieces that have a lot of fine and decorative detail in them.

 

How do you work/create?

I use a propane and oxygen torch flame to melt glass rods which I then apply to a glass or metal rod to create my designs. Each individual dot of glass has to be applied one at a time making every piece unique.

 

What do you like about your work?

Lampworking is a very relaxing craft, as you have to focus only on the twirling glass in front of you.

 

A few words about your piece at Re:Surface.

Some of my most delicate work, samples of microscopic sea creatures taken from larger models and framed to be displayed like museum artefacts.

Keep In Touch:

Email: Pj@phoebejoy.co.uk

Website: Phoebejoy.co.uk

Shop: Folksy.com/shops/phoebejoy

Facebook page: phoebe joy-lampwork glass maker

Instagram: phoebe_joy_lampwork

Video of me making: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=_rGZ61dDhEU

 

photo: Sam Lindley

photo: Sam Lindley

Re:Surface: Interview with the Artist

 

Artist: Emily Geyerhosz

 

What inspires you to create and does your work reflect this?

With writing, I get inspired a lot by music, film, TV and books. I can be inspired by certain characters and certain exchanges between them and I can get inspired by sights or settings I may come across, which is what my piece is about. I was in awe of the weather one day on an annual family trip to the coast. The town, Whitby, is a place I’ve always come back to, since I was a child. The sea, the abbey, the pier, the cobbled streets have always been one of the settings I’ve been interested in. I’ve always been keen to take photos too, and this one day I took one that stood out from the rest and just became a representation of the beautiful day I’d had. I seem to rotate to these descriptions of coastal towns, and old towns with narrow cobbled streets. I really like to describe these settings as vividly as I can.

How do you work/create?

I mostly end up writing when I’m not supposed to, like when I need to be studying. I come up with ideas usually when I’m travelling or walking whilst listening to music and I then try to write about certain images or extracts of a scene I’ve thought up and form backgrounds or plots later on. But, generally, I generally don’t really have a plan with how I write, though it can depend on what I’m writing. I like to sit down with a notepad and pen or my laptop and write for a while and then read back over it.

What do you like about your work?

I like that it is a physical copy of what I’ve been thinking about and I like translating thoughts into words. It can be difficult to not attack your work because of your inner critic, and it can also be hard to keep on rewording, cutting and changing and sometimes scrapping your ideas, but getting through that is very rewarding. Writing is a really good creative outlet, which is probably why I do end up writing when I’m supposed to be studying because it’s hard to absorb facts or information all the time as a creative person.

With the photography side of it, I have always liked the idea of being able to take a physical copy of something ephemeral- that cliche idea of capturing something forever is quite inspiring. There isn’t any skill behind the photos that I take at all, I just like the idea of photo albums and flicking through memories some of which encourage me to write.

What do you see for you in the future?

I’d love just to be able to write more in the future, either towards a big project like a novel or even smaller things like a creative journal or something that I would write everyday. Finding time to read and write for entertainment is hard now as a student as you always think you need to be getting on with uni work when you’re engaging your brain creatively instead of passively watching TV as a form of taking a break from studying. I’ve also always wanted to write and publish a book and keep up with a blog, and hopefully I will when things settle down.

A few words about your piece at Re:Surface.

I wanted to recreate the image of the Whitby Bay pier in words as it was a remarkable sight and a piece of photography I’m proud of. The photograph was taken around two years ago. I wanted to mash together my love of writing and my hobby of photography. What I hoped people would take from the piece was the idea of how writers can paint a picture, to rather capture a picture using words, which is something I find really intriguing with writing creatively. The aim was that people would read the description and then see if the photography matched up to the image painted in their head. I used pages of a book to cover to the box I’d placed the photography in to go with the idea of words mixing up with images and the conflict I can experience in my head with lots of different words and descriptions colliding together to try and describe something.

 

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Miklós Ladányi-Tóth: Transpattern

Miklós Ladányi-Tóth is such an interesting artist- his art infuses symbols of emigration and travel with thought-provoking elements of the current political climate in Hungary, a topic close to his heart. In our interview, we discuss Miklós’ inspiration, what he hopes to teach people and how art engages with politics.

What do you hope people who come to see your art will learn or feel?

This is a very important topic for me, because of my current personal situation. I started this series in Hungary and I continued it here in the UK- I feel I could [teach] something about this [Hungarian] political situation to the people living here. [I hope] they can understand this with the help of background information. I tried to make them feel the political situation [as if it were closer to home] with the elements of visual communication.

You decided to base your exhibition on the political situation in Hungary- why do you think art is good for engaging with politics?

There are numerous functions of art, the most well known being a decorative function, but [ also] as a communication tool, suitable for [different] methods of expressing opinion. We can give so many examples [of] art filled with political meaning; you can think about the exhibition about the artworks of the formal Yugoslavian artists from the Tito era, which was held this Spring at the Nottingham Contemporary.

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Why did you decide to use elements of folk-tale in your exhibition?

This is the result of a long process. In previous years I was inspired by the patterns and elements of material objects of the recent past. Therefore, [the exhibition] automatically resulted from the tools of the patterns and the ornaments. I have always been interested in the contrast between the severe, contemporary topics and the construction of a nicely-done craftwork, or rather the dissonance and the sour irony of it.

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What was your favourite piece to compose for this exhibition and why?

Among the artworks I created for the exhibition, the ‘suitcases’ are the newest ones. The most exciting moments during the installation of these dysfunctional objects were the play with the lights. That’s why these are my favourite ones, but I can see further opportunities in all of my work.

What do you enjoy most about being an artist?

The planning and describing of [my] creative ideas and the execution of them, so more or less, the whole process.

What inspires you to create art?

I really cannot give a proper answer. I simply work with inspiration, and I keep thinking about new ideas and realisations.

What advice would you give to young artists?

[To] give everything to their work and believe in themselves.

http://ladanyitoth.weebly.com/

Written by Emily Geyerhosz for Surface Gallery

Images provided by Surface Gallery

Transpattern: A Reading by Rezső Jarmalov

During the opening for Miklós Ladányi-Tóth's exhibition, Transpattern, we were fortunate to hear a reading by Rezso Jarmalov. The reading was from a text that was specially written for the occasion by art historian, Professor Tamas Aknai. For those of you that where otherwise occupied with EM16: Pulse in the main gallery, and didn't quite make the long journey up to our third-floor Project Space in time for the reading, and for those that didn't attend the opening, but wish you had, we have decided to make Professor Aknai's text available here. For those of you that did hear the reading, it's worth revisiting.

Transpattern

The genesis of or otherwise the absence of experiences principally determines our senses related to our apprehended, encountered or contemplated realities. There are people who say that observation is the grounds of everything. However, expressing these experiences is a lot more serious action to do, and so is seeking the position and formation of experiences among our manifestations that can be communicated as messages. Turning more convoluted logical and conceptual speculations into illustrated forms has been the artists’ task up to now, succinctly and acutely, in an instance, as an efficacious source of experiences. Miklós Ladányi-Tóth is the doctor of arts. As an expert, he is capable of performing analysis and of contemplating things and making reasonable decisions; he is the least satisfied by the preclusive consideration of incentives springing from the guts. The two major pillars of his exhibitions are the act of leaving and of drifting apart, and venues colored by civilization, and the experience of cultural swap intertwined with moral motifs, as well as finding and selecting visual signs and methods of formation of personal genuine efficient for convoluted understandings described just above, and their arrangement into tangible values. He also composed writings that chronicle this exhibition itself, a multi-storey and functionally layered structure resting on two pillars. For the sake of perfection, temper and spirit, to which experiences root, must also be referred to. Whenever doing so, our message will inevitably entail some political implications. Namely, this exhibition is not only an enterprise to convey the aesthetics of recognitions concerning independent visual forms, but also to focus on the most relevant matters of Miklós Ladányi-Tóth’s personal life, including his option to have a family, and moving to the UK with his wife and getting a job there, including that, by becoming part of social processes typical of the globe, their most sensitive problem is now migration of critical importance that concerns everyone these days. Changes occurring in existence: Miklós Ladányi-Tóth’s works performed in the most recent years have become distantly retrospective tokens in this respect most interestingly. Objects that of course evolve into artistic creations wear the gowns of poetic narrative. Punctured, old suitcases lit from the inside; punctured and ragged maps: objects used for the purpose of orientation and the mobilization of personal belongings. Being punctured, their aesthetic function is highlighted primarily, and furthermore they impart the symbolic communiqué of the disposal of consistency. Maps of Hungry that remind us of football pitches refer to the feverous wave of football stadium construction projects of megalomaniac nature according to Miklós Ladányi-Tóth’s concept. As to the pattern of these maps, he conceptualized iconographical data from the logos of political parties that have been elected to the Hungarian Parliament since the profound political changes in 1989. He would never deny that the baseline of his exhibition narrates the current political situation in Hungary, more specifically the perplexing cases of taking up careers abroad that count hundreds of thousands today. This, on the one hand, is compelling and, on the other hand, liberating to him as well. In his writings, Miklós Ladányi-Tóth unambiguously undertakes the direct forms of political debate and he sets his razor-sharp points of view, many of which contributed to their migration to the UK. He creates “not by the aid of documents, photographs or archives, but rather of patterns (laces, embroidery) that visually recall the elements of fairy tales …” Wooing intellectuals who cannot be connected to the fate of the country and nation in a way that would be satisfactory to them on the other side (and I am writing this on “the other side”) and have been released as the symbolization of the European ideology of freedom is the unconditional boon of the receiving society. Here, i.e. in Hungary, one is not able to judge whether particular interest that operates such decisions has ever been satisfactory, or uncompromising, and if yes, in what way. Anyhow, Miklós Ladányi-Tóth exerts efforts to propagate “his Hungarian qualities” toward the British frame of mind in a brand new intellectual milieu and in the “consuming market” of artistic visual conventions that are progressive and mysterious in a different way, not to mention their character that is also different from ours. The darkening of critical nature connected with the texture of retrospect has become an unconditionally accompanying motif of this artistic operation. By the entry of political motifs, this has become inevitable, because change itself would partly become unintelligible, if the attractive and rainbow-like jewels remain to exist. It is interesting to see how radical transfers of meaning take place in the case of Ladányi-Tóth’s particular creations which a few years ago would have been judged as warning symbols close enough to the threshold of shoddiness. It is impossible to judge from here, i.e. Hungary, what ratio of the commixture of the similar (“part of that”) and “other” (“not part of that”) is necessary for acceptance under the circumstances of the British visual culture. As his fellow artists, we can only wish that the conscious transformation of Hungarian genuine will be successful and that the universal values in Ladányi-Tóth’s pieces will be good enough to arouse and to reserve British interest.

Tamás Aknai