Art Weeks in Oxfordshire

Textile Art is well represented at Oxfordshire Art Weeks this year. 

yellow tulips

Oxfordshire Art Weeks has started, I am so excited to be exhibiting for the first time and looking forward to seeing lots of art this month!

Last week I spent Monday in a state of panic and frustration as I put the finishing touches to three pieces of textile art – Torch, In want of a Wife and Tulips to exhibit at the Heseltine Gallery which is hosting an selected exhibition of work from artists who live and work in North Oxfordshire and South Northants.

 

inwantofawife

I was stunned to see the amount of work which had been delivered to the gallery and hats off to the team who hung and displayed the pieces, it looked fabulous on the opening night. The gallery space was packed out, with 80 artists exhibiting many of whom were there to raise a glass at the private view. It was my first private viewing and how lovely to celebrate the abundant talent and to see the selectors choices for painting and sculpture – some really talented young artists.

It was also lovely to meet up with some of my textile art friends – news flash ….. Alison Ranson has successfully persuaded me to exhibit with her and other artists for South Northants Art Trails in October AND Bev James will be back to do another wet felting workshop at Stitching Kitchen in the summer.

torchbyhand

I forgot to take any photos at the private view so these are some older ones! Enough about me and stitching kitchen and onto what you can take a look at this month during art weeks and beyond. I have been packing in the visits this week and would recommend the following for those of you with an interest in stitch and fibre art.

Visit the Heseltine gallery which is attached to Chenderit School in Middleton Cheney– Oxfordshire Artweeks venue 178 – see my work and vote for your favourite! The exhibition runs until Sunday 20th May.

poster for open exhibitions

Oxford Textile Artists are exhibiting at The Oxfordshire Museum in Woodstock until 27th May - Venue 38. I spent an inspirational hour or so drinking in the work from the group from the last 25 years. A real mix of the traditional and contemporary, pictorial, structural - a wide range of subject matter to but all fitting the Journeys theme. You will see vibrant Indian inspired pieces, subtle shades, layers, felting, books and sculptures as well as a wealth of other styles.

It was really special to see the work of some of the ladies I have met at the now closed Cherwell Valley Embroiderers Guild - I hope to see some of them this weekend as I am back at the Oxfordshire Museum to spend the day hand stitching on a workshop with Jan Beaney and Jean Littlejohn [jumps up and down with excitement].

So a special mention goes to Julia Swift, Ann Lowe, Margaret Sloach, Irene Bradbury, Judith Gussin and Carolyn Walker in no particular order!!

oxtextileartiest

On the return journey from Woodstock a lunch break in Chipping Norton allowed us to drop in on Venue 137 at the town hall. Judith Gussin was there with her work - lots of dyed felts, scarves, block printed books and Indian inspired embroideries to tempt you. Judith kindly reminded me that Oxford Embroiderers Guild meeting was taking place on Wednesday and introduced me to Ticia Lever who was also exhibiting at Woodstock.

judithgussin

Yesterday I dashed into Venue 16 at 10 minutes to closing time to see the work of Barbara Shaw in the beautiful setting of the Manor Hotel, Weston-on-the-Green. I have been a real fan of Barbara's work and she was extremely generous to share her techniques and methods when I met her last year and my work has progressed as a result!

I have to confess to making a little purchase while I was there (not bad in 10 minutes) and also enjoyed chatting with Beatrice Hoffman the sculptor who was on duty, her work is stunning, really appealing round figures and smooth shapes in bronze. We also discussed running workshops which she loves and offers from her studio in Abingdon.

westonmanor

There is quite a trail in Kings Sutton well worth a visit before Sunday if you get a moment. I stopped by Fired Up Studios, Venue 153, and found out about some wonderful pottery workshops on offer with the owner/artist Helen Woolner, so that is on the family wish-list now! I also couldn't resist a little bowl to collect snipped threads in!

My actual destination that afternoon was the church, Venue 151, to sample the great tea and cake and also to catch up with Alison Ranson and Suzanne Ball who I stitch with at Kings Sutton Stitchers on a Saturday when I can fit it in. Such a treat to see some more of Suzanne work, I have only seen WIP (work in progress) while she stitches and her talent with colour and texture are worth seeing, I loved the black work cat too but lucky for my bank balance it was NFS!

I do hope you get a moment to dash around Oxfordshire and see some art over the next few weeks. Looking forward into June there are lots of open studios and exhibitions in Buckingham in June www.bucksartweeks.org.uk and then for those who love quilts and flowers the celebration at St Mary’s, Thornborough on 30th June/1st July is well worth a visit too.