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Barnett Freedman January 19 2017

Posted by Angie Lewin

I'm currently curating an exhibition which will open at Winchester Discovery Centre on Saturday 11th March 2017. A Printmaker's Journey will then tour Hampshire until the end of November.

The exhibition will include work selected from a wide range of disciplines and periods which have in some way influenced my work as a printmaker and designer. Paintings, textiles, prints, posters and ceramics by artists and designers including Eric Ravilious, Edward Bawden, Alan Reynolds and Paul Morrison will be displayed alongside examples of my own work.

Full details of the exhibition will be announced soon - do subscribe to my newsletter if you'd like to find out more.

I'll be including two works by artist and illustrator Barnett Freedman, a contemporary of Bawden and Ravilious.

Over at Spitalfields Life, author David Buckman takes a look at the work of this prolific artist and illustrator...

"Barnett Freedman is among my top candidates for a blue plaque, as one of the most distinguished British artists to emerge from the East End. There was a 2006 campaign to get him one in at 25 Stanhope St, off the Euston Rd, where he lived early in his career, but English Heritage rejected him, along with four others as of “insufficient stature or historical significance” – an unjust decision exposed by the Camden New Journal. The artist and Camden resident David Gentleman was one among many who supported the plaque, writing “He was a very good and original artist whose work deserves to be remembered. He influenced me in the sense of his meticulous workmanship. He was a real master of it.” Read David Buckman's article in full

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A portrait of Barnett Freedman

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Advertisement for Shell, 1951.

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Barnett Freedman’s ‘Claudia’ typeface.

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Lithographs for ‘Oliver Twist,’ published by the Heritage Press in New York, 1939.

Barnett Freedman works courtesy Special Collections, Manchester Metropolitan University

Emergent Landscapes December 04 2016

Over the past couple of years we've had the pleasure of working with artist, writer, musician and cultural geographer Rob St. John on several projects. Rob and Tommy Perman contributed to our Random Spectacular No. 2 journal, discussing their Water of Life project and we've since collaborated on the Concrete Antenna 12" vinyl/print release and the Creative Edinburgh Awards shortlisted Score Tae The Toor book/CD.

Emergent Landscapes is a collaborative installation at Tate Modern Switch House, exploring the boundaries between art, geography and the Anthropocene. Between 9th-11th December 2016, Rob invites the public to participate in the creation of new visual and sonic sculptures that will continue to evolve beyond the Tate Exchange space.

From the layering of a soundscape echoing visitor contributions, reflections and perceptions to the collective construction of a cairn, piles of stones that historically act as markers of time and space, Emergent Landscapes will act as a beacon; marking the newly-built Switch House and re-situating its emergence within an ever-changing London landscape.

Once the installation period is over, the whole structure will then be transported to Hooke Park woodland in Dorset, where in collaboration with the Architectural Association and Common Ground charity, it will be made freely accessible to visitors and documented for years to come. Over months and years, the spores and seeds ‘painted’ onto the cairn materials will germinate and grow; to emerge, pattern and even destroy the structure created together.

On 10th December 2016 between 17.00 and 18.00 Rob will introduce the project with an artist's talk and on 11th December between 16.00 and 17.30 Rob will discuss the future of the project with writer, curator and artist Amy Cutler.

Find out more about the project and the free (but ticketed) talk and discussion.

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The Lost Watercolours of Edward Bawden November 06 2016

Widely admired today as an illustrator and printmaker, Edward Bawden (1903-89) is hardly a ‘forgotten artist’. Yet one aspect of his career has been neglected until now: his role in the 1930s as a critically-acclaimed modern painter.

The Lost Watercolours of Edward Bawden sets the record straight by bringing together the largest collection of the artist’s pre-war watercolours ever assembled. Most were originally exhibited at one or other of Bawden’s major solo shows – at the Zwemmer Gallery in 1933 and the Leicester Galleries five years later – exhibitions that impressed critics and delighted collectors. Continues below...

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It has taken three years to assemble this remarkable collection of pictures, many of which were, as the title of the book suggests, lost. The remarkable quest to find and identify Bawden’s pre-war watercolours is described by publisher Tim Mainstone in an amusing, informative essay, which forms the third part of this richly illustrated volume. James Russell, author of the popular series ‘Ravilious in Pictures’, contributes an introductory essay exploring Bawden’s life and career in the 1930s.

The watercolours themselves are grouped by exhibition, with additional sections of works from the mid-30s and from the decade’s end.

Find out more about The Lost Watercolours of Edward Bawden and purchase a copy from our St Jude's Prints website.

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Rena Gardiner at MMU October 15 2016

Manchester Metropolitan University's Special Collections are currently hosting an exhibition dedicated to the work of Rena Gardiner.

Rena Gardiner (1929-1999) spent her life entirely devoted to her art, creating books, prints and paintings. She is best known for a series of guidebooks to historic places, buildings and the countryside, each of which she wrote, printed and illustrated herself. This exhibition will include some of these guidebooks alongside paintings, pastels, linocuts and sketch-books and a display of work by some of the artists who influenced Rena including Eric Ravilious, John Piper and Edward Bawden.

The exhibition is based upon the book Rena Gardiner: Artist and Printmaker by Julian Francis and Martin Andrew, published by Little Toller Books in association with the Dovecote Press, 2015.

Rena Gardiner: Artist and Printmaker at MMU Special Collections runs until 18th November 2016. Visit their website for full details

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Michael Kirkman October 14 2016

'Time Was Away', an exhibition by painter and printmaker Michael Kirkman, opened in Inverness last week and continues until 29th October 2016. The exhibition features a body of new paintings, drawings and limited edition prints. Michael explains...

"The work is an ongoing exploration into how the figure in art can suggest and communicate thoughts we all have. They can appear dreamlike at times, but I strive for the old meaning of surreal rather that the confusing and often over stylised interpretation that became fashionable in the post war years. I always work from memory, so often the images come from a real moment. I try to illustrate and make that feeling or sense of time and place available to look at in my pictures. I am very interested in the new Glasgow boys and in particular, the work of Steven Campbell, and also the general tradition of figurative work in Scotland with greats including Robin Philipson, the two Roberts, John Bellany and Joan Eardley.”

Having studied at Edinburgh College of Art, Michael Kirkman graduated from an MA course at the Royal College of Art, London in 2010. His inspiration comes from a need to communicate moments in time that seem strange or extraordinary, to capture what goes unnoticed. Some important influences include Eduardo Paolozzi, Mimmo Paladino, Balthus, Edward Burra and Jonathan Gibbs.

'Time Was Away' continues at The Castle Gallery, 43 Castle Street, Inverness IV2 3DU until 29th October 2016. View the online catalogue

We have a selection of Michael Kirkman's limited edition prints available over at our online gallery and Michael will join us in London from 23rd November until 4th December 2016 for our latest St Jude's In The City exhibition at The Bankside Gallery.

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Michael Kirkman 'Icarus's Wing' oil on board (48cm x 60cm)

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Michael Kirkman 'Rest from the Sea' pencil drawing (57cm x 69cm)

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Michael Kirkman 'On The Wrong Way' oil on board (48cm x 49.5cm)

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Michael Kirkman 'Weekday' linocut (41cm x 50cm)

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Michael Kirkman 'Propeller Boy' pencil and oil pastel (40cm x 30cm)

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Michael Kirkman 'Pablo's Cat' oil on board (48cm x 64cm)

Mark Hearld in Edinburgh September 23 2016

Opening in Edinburgh on the 5th of October is Collage, Pigeons and Platters, Mark Hearld’s first solo exhibition of new work following his critically acclaimed curated exhibition The Lumber Room: Unimagined Treasures which opened the recently refurbished York Art Gallery in 2015.

The exhibition continues to explore his love of the British countryside, a recent trip to Shetland and Orkney and his continuing curiosity for objects with a magpie approach to collecting in this new collection of collages, limited edition prints and hand-painted ceramics.

Talking of his collages, Mark explains…

“Collage as an approach is at the core of my work. It enables me to pull together a whole range of surfaces and textures to dynamic effect. It is inherently abstract; each bird silhouette is also a cut out piece of paper and the paper profile is very important to the overall effect.”

Visitors to the exhibition will also have the chance to see a selection of Mark’s fabrics and wallpapers for St Jude’s.

The digital catalogue for the exhibition can be viewed online now.

Collage, Pigeons and Platters runs from 5th-29th October 2016 at The Scottish Gallery, 16 Dundas Street. Edinburgh EH3 6HZ.

We're currently working on a Random Spectacular journal dedicated to Mark's The Lumber Room: Unimagined Treasures exhibition in York. To find out more nearer to publication, subscribe to our St Jude's Prints newsletter.

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The Shetland Times, 2016, mixed media with collage on paper, 56 x 75 cms

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Grey Partridge, mixed media with collage on paper, 40 x 40 cms

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Mark Hearld working in the studio

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The Shetland Ewe, 2016, mixed media with collage on paper, 56 x 75 cms

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Heron, 2016, mixed media with collage on paper, 56 x 75 cms

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Flight Platter, hand-painted ceramic, D:38 cms

Katy Hackney September 22 2016

We're delighted that jeweller Katy Hackney is taking part in our current Editions & Objects exhibition at Yorkshire Sculpture Park which runs until the end of October 2016.

For the exhibition Katy has created a limited edition of ten box wood pendants, each individually decorated and numbered.

Born in Dundee and now based in London, Katy Hackney received a BA at Edinburgh College of Art and a MA at the Royal College of Art, London. Continues below...

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Hackney’s practice is driven by the materials she’s excited by. Materials she uses include woods, plastics, precious and non-precious metals, found objects, paint, formica and enamel. Her current influences include vintage toys and folk art.

Her work can be seen in the permanent collections of the London Crafts Council, Montreal Museum of Decorative Arts, Royal Museum of Scotland, Edinburgh, and the Ulster Museum, National Museum of Northern Ireland.

We took the opportunity to find our a little more about Katy's work and current activities...

Can you tell us how to came to designing wearable works of art?

When I left the RCA I set up in business and designed and made more commercial production silver jewellery which sold well but it was tedious work.

Then I discovered cellulose acetate which spectacle frames are made from, began to experiment with it, and my work became larger and more colourful and I became interested in finding other materials to use, such as wood, Formica, other found plastics… colour! Continues below...

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You also teach at Central St Martins; how does this impact on the type of work you create?

I don’t notice that it does, something must seeping in?

It does keep me up to date with what is going on the jewellery world as we have a great programme of lectures.

I enjoy passing on knowledge and working with students from all over the world, and working with an amazing team.

What are your major influences?

Everyday things, I often get an idea from something I see in the street on my journey to college or on holiday or trips abroad.

I use my Instagram account as my visual diary, I often go back to it and print out photos of textures, colour combinations, shapes.

Working on lots of other things also feeds in to my work.

I love old toys and objects with a 'story' showing in their wear and tear - doors, tiles, tools and peeling paint.

What is a typical day for you?

My days are fairly varied. As well as teaching I work with knitwear designer Jo Gordon as colour consultant, helping to design her collections each year.

I also work as a picture researcher for costume in film, a job I started a few years ago and love. It definitely informs my work and I am learning something new all of the time.

Most recently I was the costume researcher on Suffragette and I’m working on other projects that are in production.

What is your preferred material of use?

At the moment it's wood.

You use an incredible array of materials, how do you decide which to use in a project?

I have boxes of bits that I gather along the way from all over and I work in a 'collage' sort of way with lots of pieces on my work table. I’ll move these around and arrange, cut then rearrange until I get something I like.

It gets really messy and I have to have a big clear up then I begin all over again! Continues below...

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You work as a colour advisor to Jo Gordon Knitwear; how does this impact on your work?

It definitely does as we do research on different ways and I end up looking at textiles which I didn't really before.

The costume research really influences and helps in both jewellery and design work for Jo. I'm currently researching clothing in 1950 to 60s for a job. The colours and patterns of dresses then were amazing. This will all feed into my brain and re-emerge somehow in my jewellery!

What is your favourite colour?

Yellow

What can you see from your studio today?

Usually it my neighbour’s wall!

But today from my balcony in Barcelona I can see a narrow street filled with little balconies covered in colourful washing, a man delivering a cooker and a tiny barking dog having a pee.

What single tool would you consider essential to your work?

My jeweller’s saw and my camera (usually on my phone).

What are you working on now and what is coming up next?

The staff of St. Martins are having a show COUNTERCURRENT in Arthur Beales, Yacht Chandlers in Shaftesbury Avenue. My response to the shop was to collect, borrow and steal Nautical themed jewellery and fill a little cabinet with it, we installed in amongst the shops stock... I'm also researching for a costume project. Teaching will begin in October and so will working with Jo.

Editions & Objects at Yorkshire Sculpture Park continues until Sunday 30th October 2016. Find out more about the exhibition or take a look at all the available works online including Katy Hackney's box wood pendant.

Portrait photography by Jenny Lewis.

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Modern Studies September 15 2016

Our friend and collaborator Rob St. John (who we've had the pleasure of working with on Random Spectacular projects generated from Rob, Tommy Perman and Simon Kirby's Concrete Antenna sound installation) has just released a new album as part of chamber pop quartet Modern Studies.

Their quietly experimental landscape songs are played on analogue synths, cello, double bass, drums, guitars, a wine-glass orchestra and, at the creaking centre of things, a Victorian pedal harmonium. The band came together in early 2015, when Glasgow songwriter Emily Scott recruited old pals and collaborators Pete Harvey (King Creosote, The Leg), Joe Smillie (boss of Glasgow’s The Glad Cafe) and Rob St. John.

Modern Studies have created a short trailer for the album, shot on a Super 8 camera at Port Eliot festival in Cornwall in July 2016, where the band played for Caught by the River.

We'd definitely recommend that you order a copy of the album (on CD or vinyl) via Song, By Toad Records.