Ebb & Flow • Behind the Scenes

image of Portrait of a Grimsby Girl

Portrait of a Grimsby Girl

The opening of the 62 Group Ebb & Flow exhibition is getting closer but the project itself has been almost two years in the planning. 

It started with an invitation from Grimsby Minster to show our work in the Minster which is a busy and vibrant resource for the people of North East Lincolnshire, an “architectural gem” tracing its history on this site for more than 900 years. I soon realised, however, that because we are such a large group of very diverse artists that there would not be enough suitable hanging space and display for smaller 3D work in the Minster for all of our work to be shown.

A second venue was sort and we were offered the upper floor, the mezzanine, of the Muriel Barker Gallery at the Fishing Heritage Centre in Grimsby. The Grimsby Fishing Heritage Centre was purpose built and opened in 1991. Its permanent exhibition tells the story of the Grimsby Fishing Industry in its heyday in the1950s. The white-walled space at the Fishing Heritage Centre contrasts nicely with the grandeur of the Minster.

image of All at Sea

Lucy Brown
All at Sea

The Ross Tiger, GY398, is an ex-working 1950′s trawler and the largest item in the heritage collections. Lucy Brown, one of our exhibiting members has made site specific work to be shown on board the Tiger. The image left shows Lucy’s ‘sea bags’ which will be installed around the living quarters on the Tiger. Once the venues were in place we worked on the detail of the project and funding bid to Arts Council England by Grimsby Minster which was successful. This enabled us to work with freelance writer and curator, June Hill who has been on hand to advise the group throughout the project and who will be opening the exhibition on 13th September. It also helped the group to put together a full education programme and to produce a full colour catalogue with professional photography which will be on sale at both venues.

Details of our education programme can be found here. Many of our members visited Grimsby in February when we were given a tour of both venues and of the museum collections store. All of our exhibitions are selected by a selection panel of 5. The panel is different for each exhibition and can include a representative from the venue. The selection process has now been completed and 37 pieces of work were selected for the exhibition made by 28 artists.

Photography

Photography Day at the Minster

This week we also completed the photography for the catalogue which is now in the design stages. The catalogue will be on sale at both venues.

The photographer for the majority of the pieces is David Ramkalawon who came to Grimsby from London for 2 days to photograph work at both venues.

The snap left shows David photographing work in Grimsby Minster. 

Next week the hanging process begins. Watch this space for more ‘behind the scenes’ glimpses of Ebb & Flow.

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A Feast of Textile Exhibitions in Grimsby

Grimsby, my hometown in North East Lincolnshire, UK will be hosting an exhibition of work by the 62 Group of Textile Artists in Autumn 2014. The ‘Ebb & Flow’ exhibition, which is supported by Arts Council England, has been 2 years in the planning and the will run concurrently over 2 very different venues. The first is the Grade 1 listed Grimsby Minster is often described as ‘ an architectural gem’. The second is the purpose built, white walled Muriel Barker Gallery at Grimsby’s Fishing Heritage Centre on Alexandra Dock. These 2 contrasting venues will give the group the scope to show a variety of textile related work from many different disciplines.

The 62 Group was formed in 1962 and has no premises or paid administrators. It does, however attract professional members who are willing to give up some of their time to serve on the 62 Group committee to insure the smooth running of the Group. Membership is achieved by a 2 stage selection process and members can’t relax even then as each of the 62 Group exhibitions are also selected. It is this rigorous selection process which ensures the quality of the Group’s exhibitions and has helped to establish the Group’s international reputation for professionalism.

Textile enthusiasts will not only be able to view the 2 ‘Ebb & Flow’ exhibitions between 9th September to 2nd November 2014 but will also be able to see a fantastic exhibition called ‘Sleigh Belles’ on the Lower floor of the Muriel Barker Gallery. This exhibition, which is part of the ‘Unlocking the Collection’ series of exhibitions is supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund.

Joan Sleigh was a textile teacher at Grimsby College who collected good quality costume and accessories all her life and this extensive collection was donated to the North East Lincolnshire museum collection . It will be an exhibition well worth seeing.

The Fishing Heritage Centre will also host an exhibition of textiles by Jan Dowson’s C&G students in its Café Gallery. Jan Dowson is a local teacher of textiles who has recently been awarded the City & Guilds Medal for Excellence for her teaching of textile art and mixed media at NEL Community Learning Services at Thrunscoe Centre in Cleethorpes. Jan was also 1 of only 4 people to be shortlisted for the prestigious Beryl Dean Award for Teaching Excellence this year. Her student’s work is always fresh and vibrant.

All 4 of these exhibitions run concurrently. In conjunction with their exhibitions, the 62 Group will offer a programme of talks and workshops. More information about the Education Happenings which will accompany ‘Ebb & Flow’ will be announced on our ‘Ebb & Flow’ Facebook page as soon as we have the dates confirmed.

image above is work in progress by Sue Stone

 

Figurative Textile Workshop – Unlocking the Family Album

A couple of weeks ago I travelled to Durham to deliver a figurative weekend workshop to the very friendly and welcoming ‘Embroidery 15′ group. Many of the group had never worked figuratively before so I was pleasantly surprised by the resulting work. The workshop started with my presentation about the way different textile artists use the figurative image and by looking at my own handling collection which comprises of lots of small samples of different techniques that can be used for figurative textile work. We continued by experimenting with composition in collage and finally started to work with fabric and thread, mixing hand and machine stitch with appliqué and paint.

Here is a selection of the student’s work that was produced over the weekend.

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student's work

student's work 1
student's work 2P1090112
student's work 6

student's work 9
student's work 11 student's work 12

student's work 13

A new art fair inspires the North

I have just finished sorting out my work for the Same but Different Art Fair which has been organised by the Bowery Gallery on Saturday 12th & Sunday 13th April 2014 at Temple Newsam Walled Gardens in Leeds, West Yorkshire, UK. I will be showing lots of small studies  one of which is shown. Read more about SBD Art fair.

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It’s always challenging finding a box into which it will all fit but that is done and I can now move onto my next deadline and my next box for the ‘Beside the Sea’ exhibition at Bilston Craft Gallery in Wolverhampton which runs from 12 April – 14 June 2014. I will be showing some of my ‘Life on the Coast’ series at this exhibition including ‘Bathing Belles shown below.

Read more about the exhibition.

Steve Thornton