Friday, 16 July 2010

Artist Focus: Matthew Chambers

Matthew Chambers gained an M.A. in Ceramics and Glass at the Royal College of Art, Kensington, London in 2004.

His inspirations include geometric and optical art, constructivist themes, and modern architecture and design. He explores the interests in abstract, making mathematically constructed sculptures that are each built up of many different wheel-thrown sections. These sections are joined together to make complex rhythm patterns that convey individual properties of space, light, and colour. He aims to make each piece unique, sustaining an abstract and rhythmical beauty from the pattern of its own shapes. 

Thursday, 15 July 2010

Artist Focus: Peter Hayes

“I have always been interested in - why and how 'things' are made of clay. One of the major introductions I had to ceramics was digging Neolithic iron age and roman samien shards on archaeological digs somewhere in Wales while trying to survive as an art student in Birmingham.  I am naturally drawn to shapes of artefacts and objects from other cultures and other times, but that remain timeless.

Erosion and change through time and nature are recorded in a piece.  My main aim in my work is not to compete with nature; but for the work to evolve within the environment.  The minerals, like iron and copper, that I introduce into the 'Raku' ceramic surface have their own affect on the clay during the time they are submerged in the river or the sea.  This erosion process continues with sanding so that the texture and cracks do not interrupt the surface but become an organic, integral part of the patina.  Each individual piece takes on its own developing surface; its own history and its own aesthetic.  I am merely the maker.”

Thursday, 1 July 2010

July 2010 Programme

Solo Exhibition: Graham Dean

Saturday 3 July-Saturday 31 July

Ceramics by invited CPA member potters
Featuring Gareth Mason, Matthew Chambers, Susan Disley, Ikuko Iwamoto, Sotis Filipides, Peter Hayes and Julian Belmonte
Saturday 12 June -Saturday 28 August

Contemporary Craft Collection
Saturday 5 June -Saturday 28 August

Craft Focus: Guy Royle Jewellery
Saturday 5 June -Saturday 28 August

Graham Dean Solo Exhibition

Saturday 3rd July - Saturday 31st July
Open to the public on Saturday 3rd July with an informal reception all day

Returning to the New Ashgate Gallery with an innovative new exhibition of work,
Graham Dean is a contemporary painter of international renown.
 © Graham Dean 'Shoreline 2'

This exhibition will present Dean’s work in an innovative way, not perhaps a progression from his most recent solo Sleepers at Waterhouse & Dodd in 2009, but based loosely on the documentary ‘Falling between the Floorboards’, flimed over a year between 2008-2009 in various European locations as well as in the artist’s studio while he worked. The artist believes this type of exhibition to be unusual, and like nothing he has done previously.
The artist and Gallery Director will curate this exhibition collaboratively – hanging unframed works contextually with excerpts from the artist’s sketchbook.
Daily screenings of a documentary, ‘Falling between the Floorboards’, made about Dean in 2009 will complement the work, adding another dimension to the visitor’s experience.

© Graham Dean 'Highway 2'

The gallery will exhibit 30 of Dean’s Footprints works. Footprints is a series of numbered, limited original unframed pieces. Dean has ceased work on this series, so the pieces are very collectible, and more affordable than other works in his repertoire. Buying work from the Footprints range offers a younger or less experienced collector the chance to enter into the market. For example, the average realised price of a Graham Dean work ranges from £1500 - £2500, and the pieces from the Footprints series are priced at approximately £500.

© Graham Dean 'Footprints No. 309'
About Dean’s work
Graham Dean's paintings use the figure not in a literal way but more as a vehicle to convey ideas, emotions and psychological states. Whilst his works are representational, they escape the illustrative through his ability to draw a broader meaning from the deeply personal.
Employing a technique that he calls "reverse archaeology", Graham Dean transforms the conventional use of watercolour painting. Contrasting layers of paint are laid separately onto porous handmade Indian paper, achieving a density and brilliance of colour that is visceral in its effects, merging the figure with the organic process of paint spreading through paper. Sections from several different versions of the same composition are torn away and reassembled in a form of collage, lending each image a rawness and immediacy which supports the emotive and dramatic qualities of the works. He calls his figures 'holding pens' for emotion.

© Graham Dean 'Floating (Brighton)'

Graham Dean came to prominence in the seventies and the eighties when he was part of a group of artists in Britain who marked a return to figurative and realistic art, set in an urban context. The late eighties saw him radically change direction by ‘re-inventing’ watercolour, often on a large scale with sensual and psychological subject matter.
He is based in Brighton and in Umbria, Italy.
He is represented in London by Waterhouse & Dodd of Cork Street, whose repute in the Fine Art business extends far and wide.

Dean’s work is of investment quality; he is collected internationally by an astute following. 

To view excerpts from videos about Graham Dean visit

© 2011 New Ashgate Gallery

All images are property of New Ashgate Gallery unless otherwise stated.