by Webmaster, 31st May 2021
A leading Cardiff gallery’s latest exhibition is a feast of beautiful art, ceramics and jewellery
There’s nothing quite like original art to brighten up your home and your life in general and if you support local galleries and artists, it is even more special. Albany gallery have an exciting and eclectic exhibition this month taking place from June 3rd until June 26th, offering something for everyone, whatever your artistic tastes.
Andrew Douglas-Forbes, for instance, grew up on Gower, Swansea, and after training in London as a singer, he lived and sang professionally in Italy for six years before moving back to Wales, settling in Llandeilo.
His unique approach to creating an artwork is to lay down initial abstract mark making and develop forms that emerge into a finished piece. This collection of work shows flowers and plants and their journey through the seasons.
“The work presented is largely based on flowers and plants from the Georgian walled teeny town garden,” says Andrew. “Having grown up literally in the potting shed with my paternal grandmother, flowers and plants mean everything to me.
“They were all painted over the last year. The full cycle I have watched and painted has returned just in time for this show; even the early roses are just back, which is a reminder of continuity and belonging.”
He says that the objects in his collection are all treasures to him, like the chair in the picture called ‘bequeathed' (pictured below).
“Many objects are very precious, as in ‘bequeathed’, a chippy paint chair I was given many years ago that holds dear memories and clings on tight to the past. It's not just a chair I paint.”
Another artist, David Grosvenor, is also featuring in the exhibition and is well known as one of North Wales’s most sought-after landscape painters. His subjects depict the mountains, coast, lakes and rivers of this area of outstanding natural beauty.
David now lives in the pretty seaside town of Criccieth, which features regularly in his subject matter.
Recent lockdowns and restrictions of movement mean there are fewer mountain scenes than usual this year, but this has enabled him to return to one of his most popular subjects; still life painting and in particular flowers.
Like his landscape subjects, David tackles flower painting in a fluid, almost impressionistic way and the paintings are far from botanical. All his paintings are full of colour and love of the subject.
“I like to paint scenery that is familiar to me, such as places I love to visit and revisit both literally and as subject matter. I have a particular fondness for painting water, be it lakes, rivers or the sea. My flower paintings are generally worked from flowers picked from my precious garden and I find this helps me to feel warmth and affection for these subjects too.”
In his oil painting, David generally paints using a technique known as impasto. This is where the paint is liberally applied giving texture and drama to the surface of the work. This very often needs to be seen and walked around in person rather than from a photograph, so David is relieved that the lockdown situation now allows for people to visit galleries rather than look and purchase online only.
Another exhibitor is Lindy Martin, a ceramicist, practicing artist and part-time lecturer, who returned to education after an evening class sparked a total addiction to clay.
She returned to Wales to study full time at Carmarthen School of Art, Coleg Sir Gar, in her fifties and graduated from there in 2014 with a first class honours degree in Ceramics.
“I’ve always been drawn to places and things on the edge where nature starts taking over from man, such as shorelines where manmade objects, altered by the elements are returned to us, as well as old tips full of once treasured objects, which are discarded once their useful, honourable lives are over,” says Lindy.
Her work represents the close relationship we have with domestic ceramics.
“We cuddle cups and bowls with both our hands for warmth and comfort; we place them close to our faces to further appreciate their contents and occasionally slam them on the table. Most importantly they are witness to our stories, hold our secrets and share our intimacies. My ceramics have stepped out of the kitchen to tell their tales and make you think again about the power of these everyday items.”
A very different art-form is beautiful, unique jewellery and Gill Clement’s pieces have featured in films, music videos and adorned the shelves of Harrods and Saks Fifth Avenue, so are well worth exploring in Albany’s exhibition.
The Mumbles jeweller's passion for patterns and decoration has seen her pieces worn by the likes of Jo Brand, Clare Grogan of Altered Images, and even the Archbishop of Canterbury.
“It’s 40 years since I left Sir John Cass School of Art in London, so to mark this I’ve decided to remake a selection of my handmade classic paisley and heart brooches, originally designed for Jean Muir and then sold worldwide,” says Gill. “Cast pieces, mixed with crystal, semi- precious stones and freshwater pearls will also feature in the exhibition. Standing the test of time, these are all made from various uses of pewter. My jewellery is a celebration, an enhancement of mood, as well as being sentimental and a conversation starter.”
The exhibition takes place from Thursday, June 3rd until Saturday, June 26th. Opening hours are: Monday to Wednesday: appointment only, Thursday to Saturday: 10am - 5pm, Sunday: 11am - 4pm. www.albanygallery.com