Meet the Artists – August 2019

Meet the Artists – August 2019

'Meet the Artists' afternoon

Join us for a glass of fizz and a piece of cake to discover work by not one, not two, but three new guest artists.

As our 'Summer Exhibition' of painting, print, photography, ceramic, glass and jewellery continues we welcome our new guest artists, Debra Barr-Smith, Gillian Highland and Gary Edwards to the gallery for August & September. Debra and Gillian will be in the gallery between 2 - 4pm to talk about their work along with our other member artists.

Saturday 3rd August 2pm - 4pm
167 High Street, Tonbridge, Kent TN9 1BX

Guest artist : Debra Barr-Smith

Debra’s paintings are about colour, about marks making up shapes and getting something to happen visually. She strives for the playful, the exuberant and the uplifting.

Working in oils, acrylics, gouache, inks and monoprints, her subject matter focuses on beauties in the natural world, fruit, vegetables, flowers, trees, skies, animals and the human form.

Debra exhibits annually during the Open Studios fortnight in June from her own Gallery at Dibgate Farm and with the Kent Painters Group in Sevenoaks in October. She exhibited many years with the Florum Group, and her paintings can be seen in the Sevenoaks Art Club annual exhibition “Brushworks” at Kaleidoscope Gallery in Sevenoaks.

'Felicity' by Debra Barr-Smith
'Felicity' by Debra Barr-Smith

Guest artist : Gary Edwards

Gary first started working with clay when he was sixteen years old and attending a full time art course at Macclesfield College in the early 1970s.

With the encouragement of his pottery teacher he successfully applied for a degree course at Central School of Art and Design and graduated with BA(hons) in 1977 aged 20. For the next five years he continued to make and show his work whilst also working as a pottery technician and teacher. After two one-year artist residencies at Carmel College, Wallingford and Battersea Arts Centre, both of which culminated in sell out exhibitions, Gary made the decision to stop making pottery in 1982.

Fast forward 34 years to 2016 when Gary attended ceramic summer school at Hastings College and rapidly rekindled his love for clay. He likes to work intuitively with his materials with a minimum of equipment and basic tools. His colour palette is quite muted with the occasional burst of colour, primarily blue, which is his favourite colour

Stoneware Plate by Gary Edwards
Stoneware Plate by Gary Edwards

Guest artist : Gillian Highland

Gillian Highland obtained her BA in three dimensional design at the West of England College of Art in 1969 and went on to teach, exhibit and make commissioned work until 1984. She then mothballed her workshop for 27 years to create another business with her husband.

In 2010 she re opened her workshop in order to attempt to create the flow of ideas stored in that time. There is a theme of balance throughout her work, the phases of the moon cycle, the rotation of day and night  and the inevitability of the relentlessness of time passing. Her work is influenced by the landscape in which she lives and uses various mediums of reduced stoneware, earthenware, lustre glazes and raku to order to decorate her work. This is often inlaid.

She also makes stoneware and porcelain tableware and has exhibited frequently at the RBA and RSWA The Mall Galleries, in the South East at Craft Fairs, galleries and Open Studios.

Blue Horizon by Gillian Highland
Blue Horizon by Gillian Highland

People's Choice Award Winners & Runner ups

As part of our third Birthday celebrations visitors will be invited to choose their favourite artwork, 3D work and piece of jewellery to be entered into the ‘ArtSpring People’s Choice' award.

Thank you to everyone who voted in our People's Choice award! The votes have been counted and winners and runner-up's are now in the window and at a 10% discount until the end of July!

Our 2D winner is glass artist Hildegard Pax with her stunning glass artwork Tumbling XV. Well done to runners up Mark Welland and Sarah de Mattos.

Our 3D winner is glass artist Hilary Shields with her Blue Allium fused glass - this piece has since been sold. Runners up in the 3D category are enamelist Anne McArdle and ceramicist Jane Bridger.

Our Jewellery Winner is Charlotte Tabor with her treebark-inspired hair clip. Our runner up in the jewellery category is Camilla West.

People's vote winner

Gift Vouchers

Treat friends and family with a gift voucher from Artspring