Friday, 16 September 2016

C-Art at Prism Arts 2016

Main Studio, C-Art at Prism Arts 2016

Rather unusually I had a relatively quiet summer, I took some time out to focus on my work and really enjoyed being in my studio and getting into my own work. I took part in Carlisle Art Fair which was a great experience for me. I met lots of interesting people, sold some work and enjoyed the whole process. Although I was tired after the show I also felt quite inspired and keen to carry on developing my practice, making it more of a priority.

Nature Climb, 2016
Katie Lock and Maddie Mould

Nature Climb, 2016
Katie Lock and Maddie Mould

Nature Climb, 2016
Katie Lock and Maddie Mould

It therefore came as a bit of a shock to the system when I came to start putting together our Prism Arts exhibition at our Paternoster Row spaces for C-Art 2016! It was one of those times when the phrase 'anything that can go wrong will go wrong' kept popping into my head. However, after a stressful week, a small amount of cursing and a lot of hard work we got the exhibition up and ready for the preview.

Drawings, John Lake, Emerging Artist (Prism Arts Studio Theatre West and Studio Arts)

Triptych, Prism Arts Creative Conversations Group

Triptych (detail,)  Prism Arts Creative Conversations Group

Prism Arts rents our studios and office space from the University of Cumbria in their Business Interaction Centre and because we're in the university's spaces we've been working with them and some of their students to provide exhibition opportunities, including a bursary which went to Katie Lock and Maddie Mould for their beautiful piece 'Nature Climb' which is hung in the stairwell of the building and we also gave our small studio to student Emeli Hartness who has created an intriguing installation based around nursery rhymes and their dark origins.

Prism Arts Studio Arts group 

Prism Arts Studio Arts group 

Prism Arts Studio Arts group 

Prism Arts Studio Arts group 

Several of the groups I work with for Prism Arts have work on show for the exhibition, including my Studio Arts group and the Wednesday Art Group at Carleton Day Centre. I find it both exciting and nerve racking installing work for exhibition, especially other people's work. I know in my head how I want to display things and how I think things should look but of course as in most aspects of real life this rarely happens and I spend a lot of time assessing alternatives.

Carleton Day Centre, Wednesday Art Group

Carleton Day Centre, Wednesday Art Group
Carleton Day Centre, Wednesday Art Group

Carleton Day Centre, Wednesday Art Group

How work is displayed is so important because it has a big impact on how viewers respond to it. I believe the work produced by our participants at Prism Arts is of a very high quality and I want to be able to show how talented these people are and that they can achieve so much more than some people expect. Giving people the opportunity to develop their creative skills allows them to find their own voice and tell their own story, rather than always having others speak for them.

Prism Arts/Tullie House: Picturing Places response work

Prism arts/St. Bede's/ Carlisle Library: Seven Stories project

Last year for C-Art several of Prism Arts artists, including myself, showed work and we had the opportunity to again this year. Earlier in the year we'd chosen the theme 'Flow' as it was nice and vague but would hopefully give a cohesiveness to the show. Not many of us exhibited this year but similarly to last year I was surprised by how well our pieces, all produced independently and without consultation with each other, fitted together beautifully. I love everything about Jan Hick's piece which embodies the theme perfectly.  I chose to show my small textile banner 'Flow: Connect' which is made from hand dyed indigo, beads and feathers and took forever to stitch!

Prism Arts artist: L-R Amanda Mudge, Amanda Mudge, Jan Hicks, Helen Walsh

Jan Hicks: Flow, Helen Walsh Flow: Connect

Flow: Connect

C-Art is on across Cumbria until 25th September with an impressive array of artists exhibiting so if you can I recommend you get out there and follow the yellow signs!

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