We are a group of four artists working as part of Northlight Art Studios, a not-for-profit artists’ co-operative based in Hebden Bridge, West Yorkshire. Our work shares a common theme, using childhood as a vehicle to explore identity, memory, relationships, and society. Put together as a group exhibition our works perform synergistically, creating a multi-layered narrative that encourages reflection upon the interdependencies and conflicts between adults and children, and their legacy upon society.
Our first exhibition will be at ArtsMill in the beautiful town of Hebden Bridge, and will run from Wednesday 9th February to Sunday 6th March 2011.
ArtsMill Gallery was established in June 2003 and brings high quality work by internationally renowned and emerging artists to the region as well as exhibiting the work of local and regional artists. Exhibitions have included work by Picasso, Paula Rego, Frank Auerbach, Bridget Riley, Goya and Quentin Blake as well as work by artists living locally, among them, Ann Raby, Grazyna Whittle, Kyoko Takahashi and David Wright.
Opening Times: Wednesday – Sunday, 11am – 4pm
Carole works mainly from family snapshots, producing ambiguous and often unsettling paintings that ask questions about photography and its role in capturing the ‘truth’ of our past. Through translating the photograph into a painting, the ‘constructed’ nature of the photograph is highlighted. The paintings draw awareness to the type of ‘performances’ deemed important enough to be recorded by the camera.
Images of the girl-child dressing up, playing with dolls and wielding brooms show the way these gendered performances were applauded and recorded. The figures have no features, perhaps suggesting a discomfort with being looked at, a challenge to the pervasive surveillance of the domestic camera. Objects and domestic settings from the original photograph become symbolic props which take on new meanings when transferred into a painting. Carole works intuitively, often leaving pictures quite loose and un-detailed, leaving ambiguity for the viewer to project their own families, memories and stories onto the paintings.
Find out more on www.carolekirk.com
Mary’s work draws upon the archetypes and mythic imagery that she finds in everyday life. Her large, expressive paintings explore the dark stories of childhood and their implications upon society. The vulnerability of a child becomes a metaphor for the vulnerability of society.
F**k's Sake 2
Recurring themes include the medea (bad mother); wolves and children (perhaps a metaphor for wildness and the untamed; a questioning of nature/nurture); and doll/child ambiguities (the child as doll/pet/idealised baby vs. the reality of Baby’s demands). Mary uses found images that have had a profound effect upon her (such as a row of drowned children who look like they are simply asleep); her own objects and mementoes; and found objects and toys to create her narrative images. She observes everyday life and transforms what she sees into disquieting paintings that force us to examine some uncomfortable truths. The sheer scale of her paintings forces this confrontation, filling our field of vision, refusing to be ignored.
Don’s paintings aim to intrigue the viewer, inviting them to step beyond the obvious and to speculate their interpretation of the narrative. He uses visual devices to create layers of meaning, using transparent layering of paint to suggest interiors within worlds, with exits and entrances that entice the viewer both inside and outside the picture.
His latest works are divided horizontally into three separate images, forcing the viewer to connect the elements into their own narrative. They show young people exploring in a naïve and uninhibited way a world that seems dark and edgy. The top layer provides a glimmer of hope, and the images are lightened by his trademark ironic humour. But whilst these paintings remain playful, they deal with some very personal concerns about the world we live in. The places in his paintings suggest globalisation, as East-meets-West in surreal encounters often subverted by the playful actions of children.
Find out more on http://www.donaldcmyers.com/
Sue often works with familiar domestic objects, re-presenting them to encourage reflection upon the past, particularly on family relationships. She frequently uses found items and a casting process to produce almost permanent ‘memorials’.
Traditional women’s craft processes including patchwork and knitting are explored alongside recurring objects such as the tea pot, all suggesting shared times with family and friends. The particular relationship of mother and child, cycles of childhood, motherhood, separation, aging and loss are at the heart of the work. Shards of broken china suggest fragments of memory as well as fragmentation of women’s roles. Impressions of objects of personal significance appear in the surfaces of her work reflecting the impressions that memories make and re-make upon our current sense of ‘self’.