Since my mate Jeffrey Makin arrived for a week of looking around and sketching the Tweed Valley last year, I've had a bit of a rest from the studio to deal with house reno's and those assorted things you don't really want to do. But I should be clear soon to get out in the landscape again and hunt down the spots that have that touch of magic.
Since winter 2015 I have been scouring the Tweed Valley for images, sketching whatever looks promising. I have been overwhelmed by the quantity of locations that offer potential.
In March 2016, an old painting friend, Jeff Makin, visited us for a few days in the field and was similarly impressed. It is a goldmine of powerful imagery, always with a theatrical aspect because of the micro-climate created in the caldron of the old volcanic rim.
I'm just now (May '15) beginning to put the drawings into paint.
The "40 Years On" Exhibition has now had both its openings at The Southport School's on campus St. Albans Gallery and then at Bruce Watling Gallery at Burleigh Heads.
What a hectic 10 days!! Plenty of unwrapping, hanging, talking, re-wrapping and re-hanging going on.
The week at the St. Alban's Gallery saw about 450 people take a look at the work on display and the opening yesterday afternoon at Burleigh had a supportive group of about 35 people show up for the second showing.
The curious thing for me was that at both venues, the powerful larger paintings sold but the small, more intimate ones didn't.
The work will remain on display at Bruce Watling's until August 23 and his hours are Tuesday - Saturday 11am - 4pm. You can call the gallery on 0756 333 597.
I often see blockbuster exhibitions making headlines for their attendance numbers. Works are large scale and novel, viewers are awed. Has this quest for novelty, impact, attention turned art practice away from a personal exploration, a subtle cognitive exercise in expression?