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“All at Sea”

Curated by Exmoor based artist Pandora Mond and in support of the RNLI this latest show entitled ‘All at Sea’ brings together artists of regional and international reputation, whose work, in very different ways interact with the environment and more particularly, the sea. Exploring notions of our impact on this fragile environment, a meditation, stimulated by the light and shimmering surfaces, elemental forms and the memories they evoke.

Rowena Brown – ceramic sculpture

Rowena BrownMuch of my work is concerned with abandonment.  The pieces I make - buildings, swimming pools, clothing, sheds - appear dark and empty, as if left behind.  They suggest a human presence by its absence.The inspiration for my work comes both from media images showing the aftermath of man-made disruption and environmental disaster, and also from time spent on Hebridean islands, taking photographs of weather-worn and derelict structures.

The ceramic process - particularly the rapid and unpredictable nature of raku (where the red hot ceramic is plunged into combustible material) - reinforces a sense of destruction and irrevocable change.  The pieces show a real and implied history acquired by their passage through fire and smoke.  Yet they how have a stillness and solitude.  They become vessels for reminiscence and contemplation.

I have been making and studying ceramics since my schooldays.  I have a BA in fashion design from St Martin’s School of Art, London, and worked in fashion design for 8 years.  I gained an MA in Fine Art from Bretton Hall (University of Leeds).  I have exhibited in the UK and in California. My work is also currently showing in an exhibition at Shire Hall Gallery, Stafford. Images of some of my other work can be seen on the artist’s page on www.rowboatlondon.co.uk

Abigail Fallis - sculptor

Abigail FallisAbigail Fallis studied silversmithing and metalwork at Camberwell College of Arts, London. Working with a variety of media – perhaps the strangest being fish skeleton sculptures, coated in silver and bronze – the artist combines the unusual beauty of her work with a subtle comment on man’s meddling with nature. She has shown consistently since graduating and has been featured on C4’s The Big Breakfast and BBC2’s New Brit, in which her sculpture Cock Eyed Jack – a pair of framed union jack pants – provided a sardonic comment on the blatant spin doctoring of Cool Britannia.

Artist in residence at the Pangolin Gallery London, Abigail has exhibited widely, including at the Royal Academy of Arts, London and the Reykjavik Museum, and most recently at Crucible at Gloucester Cathedral.

Despite the humour in Abigail’s creations – which include the wittily entitled In Cod We Trust and Only Here for the Halibut - Fallis has serious concerns about 21st century over-consumption, and even has an active relationship with Greenpeace.
In this work there is a combination of strength and fragility and I let the quality of the medium show through.

Pandora Mond - painter

Pandora MondThe sea, as a subject is one which I have experimented with for ages, always abandoning as I was never satisfied with the results.

When I was given the chance to curate this show, I thought it was time to confront this elusive subject. I found a way, by using different mineral and metallic pigments of getting nearer to the effect I wanted. The paintings became encrusted with mica fragments and took on a three dimensional quality with reflective surfaces. they began to convey; a sense of space, horizon less and infinite; an abstract place of solace as well as threat, where the viewer could wander unescorted.

This is the start of an ongoing project and one which I feel, could continue for a long time. ‘There is never an end to the sea’ Samuel Beckett.

Emmy – Gai Palmer - glass.

Emmy Gai-PalmerEmmy-Gai Palmer is a glass artist based in the South West of England who creates textile inspired blown glass objects. After completing her degree at the Plymouth College of art in 2007 Emmy went on to establish her business as Emmy-Gai Palmer’s Glass working through her garden studio and hiring blowing facilities from local glass studios.

One of Emmy’s most widely recognised works is her crochet and hand knitted wire inclusions encased in blown glass. To make these inclusions Emmy uses knitting and crochet techniques that were passed on through the women in her family from generation to generation, with each stitch heart-warming memories find their way in to her work. The textile element is integral to the work, the glass and knitted wire work in harmony, complimenting and emphasizing each other’s qualities.

Emmy is forever being inspired by her surroundings, the sea and beaches around Plymouth. Her ‘Del Mar’ series, are blown glass with knitted metal inclusions that incorporate colour, Inspired by nets and the translucent hues of seaweed caught up in waves and light through the sea. Light projects through these pieces creating wave like shadows. The work exhibited here has been especially created for ‘All at Sea’.

Judith Tucker – painter

Judith TuckerMy practice explores the meeting of social history, personal memory and geography; it considers a progressive relationship with these issues through drawing and painting.

Influenced by Marianne Hirsch’s notion of post memory, in recent works I have used family holiday photographs as a catalyst for my practice. Images of half-forgotten places and people generate works that consider location, memory and subject-formation in the present. In many ways drawing and painting might be considered privileged media through which to explore such connections and disconnections. I have made an extensive series of monochrome drawings. I have a parallel series of paintings employing a strategic use of iridescent pigments. While these series reference photography, they also emphasise the difference of painting and drawing as a materialisation of the seen.

I have visited three continental resorts where my family once holidayed and I have made works on location: these act as an interrogation of these tourist destinations: a journey to the past through an embodied exploration in the now. My subsequent studio based work explores the ways we devise of bringing private worlds into the public realm. I do this though imaging man-made structures in relation to landscape: these include sheds, beach furniture, aspects of swimming pool architecture: high diving boards, springboards, changing rooms and latterly remnants of military activity.

In the drawings the chosen motif is not subordinate to the landscape, the two are in conversation and it is precisely the tension of the relationship between the two that is one of the subjects of these works. The landscape here serves both a refuge from city life but also a threat to the spaces of play. Through this trope I interrogate the uncanny in a tourist landscape and I make the inevitable link to a wider cultural context and to external events.