Chris and I moved house just before Lockdown in March 2020, from Lauzerte in South West France to a nearby hamlet. Our new house is in a valley surrounded by woodland so, as you can imagine, we both had plenty of time to enjoy our new world. The trees in particular. Chris took photos, I sketched…… and then, finally, I made some new etchings!
Our latest exhibition together – ARBORESCENCE (Galerie 34, Lauzerte 82110; 14-28 May) – is, I suppose, a sort of “thank you” to those trees…….. and trees in general.
So, if you just happen to be near Lauzerte over the next couple of weeks, please drop in to see our show. One of us will be there every afternoon (except Mondays) between 14th and 28th May, and we will both be there for an informal “vernissage” at midday on SATURDAY 14th MAY.
The exhibition is also open as part of “La fête de l’Estampe”, a natiowide celebration of printing in all its forms that actually takes place, officially, on Thursday 26th May, although many printing events seem to be happening throughout the year all over the country.
It’s time to open my brand new etching studio to the public again! On SUNDAY 10 OCTOBER I will be exhibiting a number of prints (old and new) alongside the work of VANESSA GODFREY and PETRA MARTIN….. two other printmakers who live a stone’s throw from Valromane. We are now LES GRAVEUSES DU QUERCY and the occasion is the JOURNEE DES ATELIERS D’ARTISTES, when artists all over France open their studios to the public for just one day.
Check out http://www.laregion.fr/JAA for more information about us…. and all the other artists exhibiting in Occitanie and throughout France.
Here are some examples of the images that will be on display, and the poster we have made to promote the show. I think I may also show some of my most recent artist’s books……….
I finally have some decent pictures of my latest book project and will include them below. I’ve also made some final adjustments to the book in order to tighten up the floppy binding. Two very smart red leather straps have been added, augmented by some bright yellow blanket stitching……..
So….. thanks once again to the various people who have helped me produce, finally, an artist’s book that I am happy with. Jeff Price for the poem, Marjon Mudde for the invaluable advice and Chris Collister for the gorgeous photos! No artist is an island……
In addition I should mention that as the studio is actually finished (plumbing and all) A Winter’s Tale was my first project there and I can report it’s a great space to work in, and I can’t wait to get out there again soon. I have a series of etchings in mind inspired by the sketches of trees I did during “le confinement”.
As a sort of fun afterthought and to break my new studio in, I’ve been working on an artist’s book recently. It’s called A WINTER’S TALE after one of Jeff Price’s poems in his INFINITE THREADS book. I only had room for one of the four verses, but I loved his use of alliteration, and his use of words like WARTS and WRINKLES which seem to reflect my work rather well.
INFINITE THREADS was a collaboration between Jeff and photographer Chris Collister. He took them and turned them into poems that spoke to him personally and politically. So, a bit like someone in a relay race, I felt it would be apppropriate to take one of his poems and use it with my work. This project could run and run……
The book may be out there, but we are still working hard on it. We will have a mini “vernissage” in my brand new studio in early June (if permitted….). So if you live near Lauzerte (82) and are keen to take a look at some of Chris’ new photos in the flesh, or want to bask in the sound of Jeff reading his own poems, make sure you are our invitation list……
On top of that, we have just secured the exhibition space at “Livres, Books and Company” in Montcuq (46) for August and September. About 20 photos will be on show, alongside their poems. The show kicks off with a “vernissage” and poetry performance on Friday 6 August, and there may even be some books to buy! So, don’t forget about that invitation list!
Below are a couple of examples of Chris’ photos included in the book, plus a sneak peek at two other photos in the book itself, with their poems, “Jesus Saves” and “Sitges”.
Well, the deed is done, INFINITE THREADS is now a reality, although actually getting the book here from the UK in anything like sensible quantities has proved an expensive nightmare. Thank you Brexit! But you can buy it on-line at http://www.infinitethreadsbook.com and if you happen to live in SW France you can get a copy by contacting me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I have about 40 left! I’ve also ordered some bookmarks featuring the INFINITE THREADS cover etching and they should be available FREE to all of you lucky people who buy a copy of the book.
Infinite Threads is a collaboration between photographer Chris Collister and Newcastle poet Jeff Price. This collection of poetry and photographs represents a dialogue between their two art forms. Chris provided Jeff with a number of his photographs and Jeff wrote poems inspired by the images.
Jeff says “I have always been a fan of Chris’s work since I first saw some of his photographs in an exhibition 10 years ago in the South West of France. He sees the everyday in highly imaginative ways and I felt there was something poetic about his images which I wanted to capture.”
The result is twenty nine stunning images and poetry inspired by them. Sometimes like the photographs the poetry is almost dreamlike and other times it reflects the humour often found in Chris’s images.
Covid 19 has been a catastrophe for the world, but there have been some surprising positives! Here in rural South West France we all hunkered down into Lockdown for several months, eventually emerging into the light to form small groups or “bubbles” with friends in the area. One of our “bubbles” was with Newcastle poet Jeff Price, and his wife Lynda, who got stranded here last year. In fact they are STILL here and it’s February 2021.
And, thank god for that, because now we have “Infinite Threads”, a collaboration between Jeff and photographer Chris Collister. Chris had sent Jeff about 30 of his quirky black and white photographs in 2019, and during Lockdown Jeff was able to put the final touches to a series of brilliant poems inspired by these photos …….. which is now about to be made into a BOOK!
And I made a cover etching for the book ……..
We are hoping to launch “Infinite Threads” virtually sometime in April 2021, so if you would like to be kept informed check out the project website http://www.infinitethreadsbook.com
You will of course be able to buy the book via the website (£19.95 plus P&P) and if you are feeling particularly enthusiastic you can also buy one of the (very) limited edition cover etchings and/or one of Chris’ wonderful photographs.
I can’t believe that it’s been over 2 years since I posted here……..what have I been doing with my time? Actually, life has been pretty hectic because we moved house in early 2020, and then we were hit with YOU KNOW WHAT and right now I am in the process of creating a new studio at our new home. A mammoth task! As I write, the big glass doors are being installed, so it’s all very exciting. Check out my instagram posts for more visuals ……
But despite having had a tricky couple of years, I have produced SOME work. An art book or two, a couple of big commissions, a book cover ……..
But lets start with a pair of small delicate etchings called “Loch Shiel”, the result of a trip to Scotland in April 2019. Those were the days……..
Anyway, these are both 2 plate etchings using the white ground technique on aluminium. One turned out surprisingly figurative for me, plus I have been playing with colours other than red…. just for a change!
My TERRE/TERROIR show at Le Domaine de la Garde closed last wednesday …. and I think both Jean Jacques and I felt it was a success. Jean Jacques is happy because he sold lots of wine to my “clients” as well as giving his own regulars something different to look at. (French humour…. I think!) And I am happy too because I sold SIX framed etchings – I think that is a record for me, although the SISTERS show in the UK in 2016 was a bit of a hum-dinger for all of us Marchant girls!
So, what have I learnt from this experience – drink more wine maybe? Say YES to new and/or slightly wacky exhibiting experiences? Keep updating and improving one’s mailing lists? Keep on experimenting and keep on exhibiting? Or maybe a combination of all of the above………
Last but not least, a big thank you and HULLO to all of you who have just bought one of my etchings – it was a pleasure doing business with you all, and I very much enjoyed visiting “chez vous” in order to hand over your new purchases. I am delighted to know they are all going to such excellent homes and will be surrounded by other “sympa” works of art!
Summer is as good a time as any to try something new – so I went on a 5-day Raku workshop last week. My tutor (he prefers “Maitre” of course!) was Jean Francois Delorme who is a fantastic potter, if slightly eccentric in his teaching style. One of the other women on the workshop asked him for help with a rather sorry looking pot and was told ….”There are three solutions (1) a hammer (2) give it to your mother in law or (3) reglaze it! ”
Anyway, I like his style, and I enjoyed the course. Here are a few extremely wobbly examples of my very own raku pots……