Wednesday 16 December 2009
Tuesday 8 December 2009
Micheal Hoppen Gallery
25 Nov - 9 Jan
Tuesday 24 November 2009
Playing with extreme looks for the X album
Kylie takes some time out sans make up
I think it's Kylie's stage shows which really do it for me, as a lover and performer of burlesque I can see parallels in the creativity that goes into each production. They are sheer artisty involving months of preparation and thought. Her various collabarations with fashion designers and artists also blend to create a full theatrical experience which are hard to surpass:
Tuesday 10 November 2009
The Devil to Pay, acrylic on artist board with hemp rope 09
Some of you may remember that a while back I began a portrait of my friend's cat which I have been working on between other projects. Here is where Rainbow is up to now:
Tuesday 3 November 2009
I chose my paintings from a dyptich called '9 to 5' because I recently showed this work in Manchester and also I am seeing the model for 'Miss How Can I help You? #1', tonight and I thought it would be a nice idea.
Whilst working behind the reception desk I was inspired to curate a collective exhibition of work about the boring day jobs artists have to do in order to fund their art.
Hence '9 to 5' took place in 2006 with twelve artists from across the UK showing work about their 'work'.
My artistic input was the two portraits of myself and my collegue, also an artist. I turned our dull demoralising job into a kitsch fantasy where we were only too happy to answer the phone and help.
Needless to say, neither of us are receptionists now!
Saturday 31 October 2009
The final collection will be online in the next few days, so I'll keep you posted, until then have a fun and spooky Halloween!
Wednesday 21 October 2009
'SPHERE took a trip to Cottonopolis for Manchester’s Buy Art Fair. With over 80 galleries and 350 artists exhibiting for three days it was some task to bring you the best from the alt-art set. We managed it, and got them down to our choice three… '
To read the rest of this feature click HERE!
Monday 19 October 2009
Ellen Von Unwerth's 'Fraulein'
Michael Hoppen Gallery London
Until 28th November 2009
I've always meant to pop into the cathedral as it is very impressive from the outside and I like visiting old churches etc as I like the architecture and atmosphere. The Cathedral still has lots of images of St Therese including banners, one of which had this image and tagline printed on it:
A. in religious rapture
B. in sensual rapture
There are so many layers of meaning between the image and the text. It really made me think about how interpretations of spirituality and sensuality have been mixed together over time, almost as if they could be one and the same? (incidentally, she is dead in this photo! but I didn't know that until I looked it up) Here are some other examples of classic sensual religious iconography:
The ecstasy of St Teresa by Bernini 1647 -52
'Ecstase', Pierre and Gilles 2002
Another way of exploring the link would be to see what happens when you place the words spoken by St Therese alongside other equally evocative images:
Friday 16 October 2009
Tuesday 13 October 2009
The American Scene, prints from Hopper to Pollock
The Whitworth Art Gallery Manchester
19th September - 13th December 09
This show focuses on American artists creating prints from the 1930's. Each image explores the American Scene, the urban environment and cityscapes. The big draw here for me is the evocative pull of the pre war era; being able to experience something of what America was like for the artists during what we now consider a vintage period. I also love the work of Edward Hopper, most famous for his paintings such as Night Hawks painted in 1942. I particularly like this image for its timeless feel, and the intense loneliness it exudes;
The Half, Photographs of actors by Simon Annand
The Lowry Salford Quays
19th September 09 - 3rd January 2010
Image taken from www.simonannand.com
Angels of Anarchy, Women Artists and Surrealism
Manchester Art Gallery
26th September 09 - 10th January 2010
Claude Cahun, Self Portrait 1927
Fantasies, Follies and Disasters: the Prints of Francisco de Goya
Manchester Art Gallery
Until 31 Jan 2010
All at Sea by Gemma Parker
Taurus Canal Street Manchester
Until 31st Oct (Catch it while you can!)
See my last post for details.
Bloomberg New Contemporaries 2009
Until 25th Oct
I'm hoping to see this one next week...
Thursday 1 October 2009
In the midst of
Taking its cue from nautical slang and its everyday use, All At Sea is a collection of paintings illustrating well known phrases while influenced by traditional sailor tattoos styles and pin ups.
The work takes the viewer on a romantic and melancholic journey featuring lost loves, cruel sirens and shipwrecked sailors.
Using both acrylics and water colours the paintings bridge classic sailor tattoo style with a wistful and dreamy narrative inviting the viewer to embrace the call of the sea with all its beauty and perils.
All At Sea can be seen at Taurus on
Gemma Parker is a fine artist who specialises in the celebration of femininity and the theatrical.
She has exhibited across the UK including ‘Ooh La La’, Britain’s first burlesque inspired art show in Nottingham and been artist in residence for the Sunderland Council art project, ‘What do you think you’re looking at…The Sunniside of burlesque’. She also takes private commissions.
Gemma is also one half of the burlesque double act The Chantilly Belles who were short listed for the best new talent award at the Big Burlesque Bout last year in Birmingham : www.myspace.com/thechantillybelles
Taurus Manchester's Award Winning Bar & Restaurant; 1 Canal Street, Manchester, M1 3HE Tel: 0161 236 4593. Opening hours; Mon - Thurs 12 noon - 11pm, Fri - Sat 12 noon to 1am, Sun 12 noon - 10.30pm
As mentioned in previous posts I have been collecting nautical paraphanalia to customise my frames with including; shells (some from my fab seaside holiday to Broadstairs) miniture anchors and ship wheels and also rope as can be seen on two of the works:
Rack and Ruin, acrylic on artist board with hemp rope 2009
I've also added the real meanings behind each nautical phrase so when you see the show you will also get a bit of maritime history as well as the art work!
Buy Art Fair went brilliantly! It was wonderful to have work on display as part of such a high prestige event. Artists such as Peter Blake and Damien Hirst also had work on show and the whole building looked amazing decked out in original art which was seen by over 5000 visitors during it's three day run!
Show and Tell
Urbis Creatives also has a new exhibition running right NOW called Show and Tell. Members will be showcasing their work for the next three weeks at Urbis in the heart of Manchester. I am showing work from my 'My Baby's Got a Secret' series. Over the exhibition period members will be on hand to talk about their work as the title of the show suggests! Hope to see you there!
Saturday 19 September 2009
In addition the fair offers a whole host of FREE activities for experienced and novice art collectors to enjoy!
I will be situated on the second floor as part of the Urbis Creatives stall, this will be a fab opportunity for you to come along and see my work up close and maybe treat yourself to a little decadence!
About my work on sale:
Playfully using the French slang which describes the area between the waist and thighs, this work sees a selection of peachy behinds all themed on sweeties and chocolates.
Each painting is enhanced by ice cream colours and sugary titles, and with the range including strawberry fondants to jellybeans, there should be a flavour to tempt anyone's taste buds.
This has been a really successful series and there are only a limited number of Bon Bons left to buy!
It's been busy busy busy recently as the deadline for my exhibition of nautical tattoo inspired paitnings draws nearer! The show of select watercolours and acylics will go on show on the 1st Oct at Taurus in Manchester's Gay Village. I'm getting all the bits and pieces finalised at the mo, and even wondering whether I have time to do an extra painting before the show! I've had a new idea for one! BTW the show is to be called 'All at Sea'.
Monday 7 September 2009
Apologies for not posting anything last week, I was on a fabulous holiday in Broadstairs in Kent! Sunshine, seaside and lots of exploring and fun.
But in an attempt to recapture some of the seaside magic here's some of the things that inspired and uplifted me on my hols!:
The legend goes that in 1835 a duck pond was being dug for farmland, the earth collapsed to reveal a hole in the ground. The farmer lowered his son down the hole to find out what it was. The son returned with tales of underground tunnels decorated from floor to ceiling in shells!
It is a magical mysterious place and well worth the visit!
I loved being near the sea! It is so full of character, ever moving and changing. The sound of the waves was both exhilerating and very calming. There is nothing quite like running into the sea and feeling the sand shift under your feet!
This amazing place is something of a love of mine. Nearly a 1000 years old Canterbury Cathedral is again a magical site and much has happened here over its long history. It was also the focal point of the travellers from Chaucer's Canterbury Tales.
Tuesday 25 August 2009
In the meantime I thought I'd tell you about my favourite British burlesque performer Beatrix Von Bourbon. I first became aware of her when she performed at the private view of the Ooh La La exhibition I took part in in 2007. The show was Britain's first burlesque inspired art exhibition and I'm really proud to have been part of it!
Last year I painted Beatrix after she modelled for me. I was inspired by her tattoos and wanted to paint a piece that told a story about revealing truths. In her portrait she is slowly pulling away her blouse to reveal her tattoo chest piece. It's up to the viewer to decide if she is being tentative, coy or seductive. I included the painting in my ongoing series My Baby's got a Secret which you can see HERE. Miss Von Bourbon also makes a cheeky anonymous appearance on my Bon Bons series which you can see HERE!