New exhibition to open at Ropewalk Contemporary Art & Craft
One of the highlights of the exhibition year at Barton upon Humber’s Contemporary Art & Craft, Gaolyard, St Ives – A Special Place, opens on Saturday, September 11.
The Maltkiln Road gallery’s Exhibition Officer, Richard Hatfield, is delighted that potters based in the former gaolyard at this Cornish seaside town are to display their work in this month long selling exhibition.
“Two years ago we had a small exhibition last year which featured the work of Sarah Dunstan, one of the potters who works from Gaolyard Pottery,” he recalled.
“We offered to return her unsold pieces and the location and set up at Gaolyard seemed idyllic.”
“It was my first visit to the area and I was very impressed with the high quality of the work created there and it seemed a logical step to offer a group exhibition,” he continued.
Richard explained that St Ives has long been a Mecca for visual artists through its association with the likes of Ben Nicholson, Barbara Hepworth, Christopher Wood, Terry Frost, Peter Lanyon.
“The area has been strongly linked to contemporary British art and this link was firmly cemented with the opening of Tate St.Ives in 1993,” he continued. “Today St Ives has perhaps the highest concentration of artists and galleries in the country.
Gaolyard, St Ives – A Special Place is a present day representation of a legacy in the history of British Ceramics that stretches back almost a hundred years with the establishment by Bernard Leach of the Leach Pottery there in 1920.
John Bedding, a former Leach employee, established the Gaolyard Studios in 1999.
“Other artists and practitioners give you a buzz and enthusiasm for coming to work. There is also the practical side with people around to help with technical problems. At the Leach everyone used to go around and look at each other’s work. When I left that was one thing I really missed,” he said.
There is no house style at Gaolyard and the studio is now home to a range of potters who differ in method, age, individuality and experience – seven of whom are exhibiting at The Ropewalk.
Gaolyard, St.Ives – A special place features the work of John Bedding, Trevor Corser, Sarah Dunstan, Rebecca Harvey, Rick Henman, Amanda Ray and Louise Thompson and runs until October 10.