Coming up

Coming Up:
*** Sat 11th Aug: Outdoor Painting at Little Hereford Fete (Easton Court) ***
*** Mon 13th Aug: Deadline for Summer Exhibition Entries ***
*** Sat 18th Aug: Social Evening ***
*** Fri 24th Aug: Summer Exhibition Hanging & Private View ***
*** Sat 25th Aug - Mon 3rd Sep: Summer Exhibition at St. Laurence's ***


Thursday, 12 July 2018

Spotlight: Going public?

Artist: Leon Keer. 3-D street piece
The end of July sees Europe’s largest street art festival, about 80 miles away from Ludlow, spread across much of Bristol. As a shameless plug, Sam Manley, LAS’ previous Chairman, and I will be producing art and exhibiting there for a couple of days. In public. As it is a street art festival every artist will be out there, painting and making in full view of the public eye. About 70,000 people visit the festival on a sunny weekend. So, why would anyone want do such a thing?
Artist: SHOK-1

Firstly, it tests the quality of your art. There are very talented artists there, as at any major exposure event. It makes you play a strong game.
Artist boards

Secondly, there is an opportunity for networking, including gaining interest of arts promoters and galleries. There is potential to attract professional representation.
Artist: MyDogSighs (one of the founders of Upfest)

Thirdly, one can learn from other artists: techniques and confidence.

Artist: Goin. Photo credit: Plaster copy

Fourth, it is friendly, mostly. Street art is both collaborative and competitive in ways. Some of its scale and techniques necessitate working in groups. The grabbing of public space, and the viewership that it gets, means that there can be competition between individuals and groups who wish to get a message across to the populace.
A view of part of an Upfest zone

The risks are wasted time and humiliation. But you have to try. Yes is stronger than no.
Our Art Society offers similar opportunities.
I hope you enjoy your membership.

Artist: Manu Invisible

Saturday, 7 July 2018

The Arborealists at Twenty Twenty

The Arborealists

Sat 14 July to Sat 28 July

Friday, 6 July 2018

LAS member Miranda Goudge and friends exhibiting at Canwood

In the Middle of Somewhere
Canwood Gallery, 
Checkley, Woolhope, HR1 4NF
August 4th-31st, Tuesday-Sunday 11-4

In the Middle of Somewhere is a collaboration between two ‘cartographers’ from the Royal college of Art with eight Herefordshire artists, most of whom met at Hereford College of Art over 10 years ago. The exhibition channels, celebrates and discusses the momentous importance of art as a fundamental life tool - a vital means of expressing one’s individual political voice, and of working through personal everyday obstacles, whilst making sense of some of the universal realities of the age in which we live. 
In the Middle of Somewhere:
A small disparate group find themselves lost ‘In the middle of somewhere’.
Making the best of it, they create things to help themselves not think too much about missing home.
One day they happen upon a passing cartographer, who they ask to draft a map to help them find their way back.

Xe agrees, explaining that there are many ways back and that they must all work together - as it’s only possible to map out the various spaces they perceive between themselves and each of the group members, via the objects they’ve created (since there’s nothing else to go on). 
All are cartographers in the end. 
Xe says, mapmaking also helps a cartographer to pass time, since Xe too is lost. Yet a cartographer’s work can be useful to other lost folk. 
Being also lost, 
Xe can’t help them to not be lost, but rather Xe guides them towards mapping their own somewhere’s - where they are, if only for them to just see that they are, at least… Somewhere (X)
You are invited to join the artists for a picnic in the beautiful grounds at Canwood, on Thursday 23rd August, between 5-8pm.
Artists: Anita Louise Davies, Julia Gardiner, Miranda Goudge, Wendy Healey, Caroline Holt-Wilson, Liz Morison, Dani Sangway, Lexi Strauss 
Cartographers: Tom Nash, Lexi Strauss

Friday, 22 June 2018

A Talk for Sunday

Emma Summers, Sandra Salter and Dulcie Fulton share their secrets this Sunday.

Thursday, 21 June 2018

Oriel Davies Open 2018

Includes work by Nick Holmes who gave our April talk/demonstration.

Tuesday, 12 June 2018

Spotlight: Don’t throw it away!

Seeking inspiration? Does your imagination go in fruitless spirals while your palette dries? Then crumple that unsatisfying piece of paper and…. don’t throw it away. Instead, draw it’s shadow. See where it takes you.
Guy Larsen draws faces based on shadows from crumpled paper. This is a fairly standard artistic exercise, and a helpfully fun one. By using shapes dictated by the paper, in which there is an element of random, the artist is free from the demands of trying to reproduce an ideal image from within their mind.
  Randomness can be a very constructive liberating force in art. You can draw the curve that is there, rather trying to draw the curve you think is needed. You can make something appear more real, if your style is rather more systematic or rigid than life. Art is not the real thing, but an impression of it, so it makes some sense to draw shadows. In times of inspirational need, The Lord or Karma provides. Pretty soon you will be practised at making forms based on anything you find inspiring.
And it is a form of recycling. Throwing things away, and making a performance of it, can be very useful. Gordon Ramsay swears by it.
  Why do faces so readily appear in the drawings people make based on crumpled paper? Why not trees or houses?
Lascaux, France
In prehistoric caves, most paintings, and sculpted pieces of bone and tusk and clay, depict animals. They are of horses, reindeer, rhinos, mammoths… They are on walls, and in carved pieces of animals, and in wall reliefs. Human figures are less frequent.
Venus of Galgenberg
However, outside of cave settings, most prehistoric sculptures are based on humans rather than animals. Why is that? The answer is simple: it is not true. Archaeologists simply find more human-based figurines, because a stone-like thing, when shaped a bit like part of a person, catches our attention. Whereas a stone-like thing shaped a bit like part of an elk will just look like a stone to us.
 'Elk' - Sally Matthews
Elks would probably find more elks.
 It depends on what you notice. Most meteorites that are found by observing them fall, as flares of light that hit the ground and are found smoking on scorched grass, are “stony” meteorites – the type which have low iron content. Few of them turn out to be the iron-rich “stony iron” meteorite variety. 
Similarly in the desert, most meteorites found are “stony”. However, among the cold meteorites found in prairies, most are “stony irons”, which suggested that meteorites fall differently in deserts. It took a while for astronomers to realise why, outside of deserts, most meteorite finds are “stony irons”. “Stony” meteorites look like stones.
A chap (Robert Ward) who has found a stony iron.  In America.
So it is with crumpled paper: we favour the familiarly noticeable, which is typically a human face.
And if you don’t like what you’ve drawn, you know what to do.

'Chance and Order IV' - Kenneth Martin, 1971-2

Sources include:
Drawing with shadows’ - Guy Larsen:

Saturday, 9 June 2018

Ludlow Art Trail 16th June to 1st July

Pick up a free map from any participating location, or click here for more details.

Ludlow Fringe Artists Market

Saturday 16th June, Castle Square, Ludlow. This might be of interest either to individual artists or perhaps small groups of artists. There's more information here. Click on the info sheet and booking form below for more details. I understand there are no gazebos left, so you will need to bring your own.

Sunday, 3 June 2018

James Hurdwell at Royal Academy Summer Exhibition

Ludlow Art Society congratulates member James Hurdwell for having had one of his paintings accepted for the Royal Academy's 250th Summer Exhibition.

We wish him every success with the new avenues that are opened up by being involved in such a high-profile exhibition. You can find details of the Royal Academy Summer Exhibition here with a short video about the show:

Friday, 11 May 2018

Spotlight: “I needed colour”

  Image from the documentary 'I needed color'   

Jim Carrey, the actor and comedian, came out with a surprising documentary last year. Running for just 6 minutes, it shows him in his painting studio, with canvas and brushes. It introduces a side of Jim Carrey that we had not seen before, unless we had looked carefully: the person expressing their visions through their art, and growing with it. The short video has come to be known as “I needed color.
  The title is based on a line Jim says in it, as to why he took to paint, during “a really bleak winter in New York”. Notice what he does not say, but could have craved. He did not say “I needed escape”, “I needed music”, “I needed time”, “I needed friends”, “...destruction”, “...meaning”, “money”, “love”, “hope”.

‘Electric Jesus’ (detail) – Jim Carrey

In his case, “bleak winter” was somewhat metaphoric. The drab darkness and seclusion of that winter was also his soul and spirit, at a time of personal loss, anguish, uncertainty, and a search for meaning. The bleakness was inside as well as out.

‘Eva’ - Jim Carrey

Jim Carrey has become known, since, for many public displays and interviews in which he describes peace, purpose, connectivity of all things, and the liberation that he feels through the grand absence of any significant meaning to most aspects of humanity’s endeavours and distractions. Nothing matters.
  So why did he need “colour” specifically?

‘Hooray We Are All Broken’ - Jim Carrey

His paintings depict his concepts quite overtly.
  Of ‘Hooray We Are All Broken’ he says "So-called reality is energy and color creating forms that rise out of nothing. Broken figures dancing for each other filled with pain and polkadots, sharing one frequency, yet believing they are separate." With such a description we can wonder whether it was the image or the words which came first. It feels as if the verbal concept birthed the painting, as an illustration of the worded thought. Words feature in many of Jim Carrey’s works. His paintings are very literal.

‘Prison of Becoming’ – Jim Carrey

The concepts Jim illustrates, such as spiritual connectedness, can also be expressed through watercolours of nature, or a minimalist abstract, however in such cases any message is typically down to personal interpretation.

When considering a watercolour of a flower, one could easily say “It represents new life” or “solitude” or “That’s pretty”, which all relate to connectedness. However with Jim’s huge bright paintings, like billboards, it is clear there is an intended message. Jim’s painting, for all its introspective origins, is evangelistic. The paintings are rather like stained glass windows. [Please leave a comment below if you have read this far. Just commenting “read” will do. Thanks.]
  We could see this as a performance-like way of approaching the audience, derived from his acting career and stand-up comedy beginnings. However there are many non-thespian painters who take a similarly blatant approach to their subject matter.

The Disasters of War (one of 80 Etchings) - Francisco Goya

Goya’s expressions of wartime are deliberately explicit, like shocking news headlines, and Banksy was always much more of a recluse than an actor.

Banksy, 2013

With Jim Carrey’s paintings we see how encompassing these notions are to him: the absence of personal immateriality, within a cosmic force of love, is everything in his art, as it is in his speech. Subtlety can only exist when there is a broader context in which to couch an issue. When one’s theme is everything, the message fills the canvas. It shouts. With every brush stroke, there is nothing else to paint.

‘She’s The Bomb’ - Jim Carrey

  Carrey’s expressed desire for colour can remind us of similar times when people wanted to express peace and spirituality. “Hippy” movements from the 1960s used colour to bring brightness and love into an austere world, and to lighten those whose souls manifested fear and violence. The visual art of peace movements often included flowers, as invocations of the sharing equilibrium found in nature, in which there is a space for everything, including finding beauty in caring for the delicate.


  That perspective has changed, and been somewhat lost, with social and scientific emphases increasingly on competitive aspects of nature. Current interest in nature - in education particularly - is often on Darwinian natural selection and its dependency on strength and adaptation, which thereby endorses a state of perpetual conflict. One can wonder whether this is healthy. It feels time to reclaim the harmony aspects of nature.
  Since the 1960s there are evidently more complex and global issues presented to us through multiple means of communication, and the target has shifted - then it was war, organised and mostly overt. Now the dangers, in peace time, are less obvious. Threats to us as individuals and a species are more subtle. They include boredom and loss of identity through automation. Flowers still convey peace and love, but when we look at Carrey’s art, and that of many modern artists, the dialogue is more complex than “war is bad”.

‘More More More’ - Jim Carrey, from the Sunshower exhibition

  So besides the doom and gloom, what do Carrey’s paintings celebrate? I think it is that we do not exist in isolation, and barely exist at all. Which is worth celebrating, as it empowers us to act as individuals for a shared good. Jim’s evangelical, messianic message is essentially the same as much religious advocacy: without the cosmic one-ness we are nothing, and there is redemption for us through acceding to that greater collective existence. 
  We hear the same evangelistic advocacy when we are told that schools must capture the hearts and minds of 8-year-olds to want to do engineering, if the future workforce is to be suitable for a more automated industry. When governance and science express such targets of “education”, heads nod obediently, yet mainstream media ridicules and alienates the advocacy of freedom expressed by those such as Jim Carrey whose aims seem far more liberating and honourable to the individual and to the collective.
  Or you can paint, as Jim also does, because it makes you happy.

If you write all this down, as I have, it is far less interesting and enjoyable than looking at paintings, and feeling how they convey these concepts through vibrant colour and beauty. And it is far less joyful than creating such paintings.
  When writing this, or thinking about it, one quickly concludes... “We need colour”.
Photo from Jim Carrey’s website,

I write these Spotlights on topics that strike me as interesting. The point is to interest you. If there is a topic you would like explored from this kind of perspective, contact me via and your topic could be another Spotlight.
    Cheers y’all.
           Love, life, and LAS.

Further info and sources:
   ‘I needed color’ documentary :

One-off Chance to see Art Exhibition at The Hurst

The Hurst at Clunton houses an excellent collection of art, curated by Jo King (who gave us our talk last night on Understanding the Art Market). On Sunday 13th May, from 2 to 5pm, the house and grounds are open to the public. This is a rare opportunity for anyone interested in contemporary art. Full details in the leaflet below - click to enlarge.

Sunday, 29 April 2018

Bishops Castle Open Studios 2018

Bishops Castle Open Studios 2018
Art & Antiques Weekend
Friday 8th - Sunday 10th June 2018
10am - 5pm, free entry

A weekend of artists' Open Studios and artisan shops in and around the town of Bishops Castle. To include Printmaking, painting, Textiles, Jewellery, Sculpture, Ceramics, Stained Glass, Contemporary & Vintage and More!

Saturday, 28 April 2018

Spring Exhibition 2018 - Report

Our spring exhibition at St. Laurence's church resulted in a bumper sales figure of £2,680 which is our best spring exhibition result since 2012. Thank you to all who took part: organisers, helpers, and participating artists. Prizes were awarded as follows:

Twenty Twenty Gallery (£50 cash) to Peter Bishop, for Cader Idris & the Mawddach Estuary

Chang Thai (voucher) to Rob Leckey for Tramcar 1813 Approaching La Scala

Castle Bookshop (£25 for artists' materials) to Mary Loewenthal for Lilies in Willow Pattern Jug

President's Choice to Samuel Bebb for Wigmore Castle 1

Mayor's Choice to Lily Wang for Orange Street Light

Thanks to Pat Innes for counting the votes for the public's favourite exhibits. Results are as follows:
  1. Quayside at Whitby by George Loades – 27 votes
  2. Motte and Moat Farm by Martin Dutton – 18 votes
  3. Coming Home by Val Littlehales – 18 votes
  4. Sunset in Winter by Lily Wang – 18 votes
  5. Spring Sunshine by Lesley Connolly – 17 votes
  6. Harvest Moon by Val Littlehales – 16 votes
  7. King of Kings by Stephen Foxx – 15 votes
  8. Orange Sun Streetlight by Lily Wang – 12 votes
  9. Olive Grove 6 by Sam Bebb – 11 votes
  10. Skiddaw by John Willetts – 11 votes
Other votes received:

Val Alexander: Dinham Weir – 7 votes
Woodend at Henley – 6 votes
Farm Track – 6 votes
Sundown at Topsham – 6 votes
Low Sun at Henley – 4 votes
Summer Memory – 4 votes
Tulip Fest – 1 votes
Thelma Ayre: Winter Farm - 4 votes
Evening Light – 1 vote
Sam Bebb : Willows – 4 votes
Wigmore Castle – 3 votes
Olive Grove 7 – 2 votes
Before the Storm – 1 votes
Dr Peter Bishop: Cader Idris – 7 votes
Mawdach Estuary – 2 votes
Lyn Ca …. - 1 vote
Madeline Broad: Tiger – 1 vote
Sue Campbell: Untitled 2 – 4 votes
Untitled 1 – 1 votes
Rosemary Charles: Move Along the Branch – 6 votes
Robin – 1 vote
Lesley Connolly: Puffins – 4 votes
Tom Crowe: Wood and Pebble – 2 votes
Val Davies: Taking a Rest – 5 votes
Keeping Watch – 3 votes
Boxing Hares – 1 vote
Catherine Downes: Clematis – 8 votes
Primroses – 5 votes
Devon Stream – 4 votes
River Conwy – 1 vote
Martin Dutton: St David's Head – 2 votes
Three Angels – 1 vote
Linda Emery: Elephant – 3 votes
Gretchen Ind: The Hotel Room – 3 votes
A World of One's Own – 2 votes
Open Book – 2 votes
Misty Morning – 2 votes
House on the Hill – 1 votes
Pat Cusack Innes: Casement View: Summer – 5 votes
Trevor Innes Ode to Psyche – 2 votes
Ros Kingston: Rabbit – 3 votes
Thoughtful Cat – 2 votes
Wait – 2 votes
Forest Life – 1 vote
Jacquie Langham: Greta – 4 votes
Sean – 1 votes
Aubade – 1 vote
Rob Leckey: Tram Car – 9 votes
Burling Cap – 4 votes
Val Littlehales Show Day – 10 votes
Crescent Moon – 3 votes
Last Light – 3 votes
Shine and Shadow – 3 votes
Pick of the Crop – 3 votes
Sparrows – 2 votes
New Horizons – 2 vote
Portrait of Ewe – 1 votes
The Mountain Hare – 1 vote
George Loades: Along Cardingmill Valley – 4 votes
Mary Loewenthal: Ploughed Field – 1 vote
Windowblown Summer Garden – 1 vote
Lilies – 1 vote
Fiona Miles Peachey Gerberas – 1 vote
Polly Moseley: Ludlow Station North – 2 votes
Ludlow Station South – 1 vote
Anne Priest: Fetch – 5 votes
Scamp – 2 votes
Elegant Reflection – 1 vote
Fast Runner – 1 vote
Mary Phillips West: Cat – 6 votes
Dave Tedham: Rooftop Strut – 3 votes
Hung – 1 vote
Leaded Lights – 1 vote
Jangle – 1 vote
Ruth Tune: Blue Tits – 1 vote
Larry Turner: Glencoe – 3 votes
Loch Meall – 3 votes
Carn Mor – 2 votes
Val Turner: Winter at Windrush – 5 votes
Cold Moon over sea..... 2 votes
A Worcestershire – 1 vote
Lily Wang: Dinham in Winter – 10 votes
Lady at Work – 9 votes
Clock Tower – 5 votes
Linney – 4 votes
Swans – 4 votes
Sunset in the Forest – 4 votes
Raven Lane – 3 votes
Ducks – 3 votes
Dinham Bridge – 3 votes
John Willetts: Towards Carnedd – 10 votes
Ready to Depart – 6 votes
Plush Hill – 5 votes
Eilean Donan Castle – 4 votes
Pole Cottage – 4 votes

Thursday, 26 April 2018

Andy Nash Dispersal Sale

Former art society member Andy Nash and his partner Sandra are selling all their worldly possessions in favour of a mobile art studio (camper van). One thing I spotted for sale is a brand new roll of artists' lino, 2m x 90cm x 3.2mm, for just £50. You can see what else is on offer at their studio on Pepper Lane. Follow Andy at

Tuesday, 17 April 2018

Renaissance Centre seeks Artists

Renaissance of Ludlow displays the work of local artists in their Tower Street shop. They currently have space for another 6 artists to hang their work. Costs are £10 a month for a 4 foot square to hang work. Please contact Julie or Richard on 01584 877751 for more details.