Having enjoyed a well earned lovely break over the summer, we are looking forward to presenting our Autumn Show, starting Friday 4th October.
As always, this show has been carefully curated by Sarah, who has put together a selection of her favourite pieces with fantastic work from both old gallery favourites and artists who are new to the gallery. The result is a superb collection of eclectic artwork ranging from the serene sleeping figures of painter Sally Gatie through to the pure abstraction of Helen Booth's mesmerising canvases.
Complementing the paintings, is work by ceramicists Lesley Doe, Barbara Gittings and Sally Cleary, whose beautiful porcelain vessels and bowls demonstrate the beauty of the medium in very different ways.
We are also pleased to be showing a range of stunning contemporary jewellery from emerging jeweller, Megan Brown.
Details of the exhibiting artists, and selected images of their work can be found below. There will be much more in the Gallery!
We look forward to welcoming you
Helen was born in Staffordshire. She studied Fine Art Painting at Wimbledon School of Art (1986-1989) under Bernard Cohen, George Blacklock and Prunella Clough.
'The dot itself can be many things, a puncture wound, a beginning, an end, an existence or a loss. It can be the end of a sentence or a punctuation in a landscape. It can symbolise life and it can represent death – a full stop.
My recent paintings concentrate on the limitless variations of the single dot and how the individual marks when placed side by side create a dialogue. Often the dots follow disjointed lines or they crowd together in amorphous blocks. Sometimes they are destroyed by gravity with dripped paints. The works explore both an impulsive and repetitive way of mark making that is both gestural and meditative. Straight and dynamic lines often appear alongside the more gossamer transient dots in the paintings.
After each layer, I pour and drag the paint across the surface - this juxtaposition of imposed structure and the loosely applied layers is an emotional response to the process of painting. My restrained palette creates work that focuses on the mark without the distraction of colour.
Memory is also fundamental to my ideas, both personal memory and how it changes and morphs over a lifetime and also the memory of Nature. How the magnitude of space and its incomprehensible meaning can also be found in the most micro of organism. A recent trip to Iceland, seeing land newly formed and baring witness to primary succession, reinforced my personal belief that Nature is the most powerful force and that trying to capture the essence of nature in its purist form is what is important to me as an artist. The cycle of birth and rebirth, in life and in nature is key.
The icelandic trip and subsequent work was made possible by the generous support of the Jackson Pollock & Lee Krasner Foundation and the Adolph and Esther Gottlieb Foundation in America, whose recognition and support has been life changing this year.'
Helen works from her studio in Wales and exhibits widely. She has received numerous awards and prizes including, most recently, two awards from the USA: the Pollock Krasner Foundation Award (2019 - also received in 2014) and the Adolph and Esther Gottlieb Foundation Award (2019). In 2018 she won the BEEP International Painting Biennial Prize, Swansea, and in 2012, the Threadneedle Art Prize, The Mall Galleries, London.
Sally was born in Australia. In 1994 she was awarded MA Fine Art from RMIT University, Melbourne. In 2014, at the same institution, she successfully completed a PhD Fine Art.
‘Through my art work, I explore the representation of nature and human ecology transposed through mixed-media sculpture.
I am interested in the relationship between objects, and the relationship that we, as human beings have, with the natural environment.’
The ‘State of Ruin’ series exhibited in Silson Contemporary’s Autumn Show is inspired by landscape and architectural ruins. The porcelain forms stand alone, or in groups. When assembled together my artworks form still lifes of small cities, or forests of forms. They are a momento mori of the nature of time and all that will remain after we cease to exist.
These works are 3D drawings and collages, constructed with porcelain paper clay. They are high fired, and translucent where the clay body is thin.’
In 2014, Sally relocated to Paris, France where she now works as a senior lecturer in Art History whilst continuing her artistic practise. She has exhibited in Australia, France and the UK
Sally Marie Gardner
Sally Marie is a Contemporary British Artist who is influenced by light and energised by the surrounding wilderness of her northern homeland.
Born and raised in Cumbria, the Lake District and Yorkshire Dales feed her creativity and are reflected in all her paintings.
Sally’s artwork is a direct response to nature and her experiences within it. Her fascination with shifting light and seasonal changes of colour, unify her pieces to the landscape. Long walks with her sketchbook down the dales and up the fells are the starting point of all her paintings as well as her love of writing and poetry, which also feed into the work.
Sally works from her studio in Sedbergh, Cumbria, and is currently Artist in Residence at Simonstone Hall Hotel, North Yorkshire. She exhibits her contemporary landscapes and abstract pieces in galleries across the UK. She was selected for the prestigious New Light Art Prize Exhibition (2017/18), during which time her work was shown at the Tullie House Museum and Gallery, Carlisle, The Bowes Museum, Barnard Castle and Bankside Gallery, London. Her paintings also feature in private collections in the UK as well as the USA and Australia.
This is the second time we have featured Sally Marie in an exhibition, such was the admiration for her work first time round.
Born and raised in North Yorkshire, Sally studied Fine Art Painting at The University of York.
Her fascination with the human form led her to spend many hours in the life room, honing her drawing and painting skills from the life model. She developed a highly skilled classical drawing technique and deep knowledge of colour. Indeed, the human form is prevalent throughout the work.
Working from sketches and photo-montages Sally creates her paintings using a grid system. It is a technique she has carefully developed over many years and is unique. She uses the figure as a starting point for an exploration of colour, texture and pattern.
Sally paints large and small scale artworks, using oil on canvas. Her love of pattern and texture is shown in her expressive mark making, as she depicts figures gently cradled in a sea of tumultuous patterned fabrics.
‘Jasmine’, shown at Silson Contemporary, was part of The White Room Installation (2013 -14), displayed in six galleries across Yorkshire and Scotland as part of a touring exhibition. The White Room consisted of four large scale paintings, each one becoming a wall which formed an intimate room.
The inspiration for The White Room stems from Sally's private view of her life and family, exploring ideas of motherhood, nurturing and consciousness. She understands that her thoughts and feelings are reflected while she is painting, and are consequently experienced by the viewer as a result. She therefore places great importance on her thoughts, moods and state of mind while painting, which all become woven into her artworks.
As with the other 3 paintings in the exhibition, Jasmine, at first appears to be peaceful and still, however, before long the viewer will become aware of an energy emanating from the painting into the viewer’s space.
Sally works from her studio in Scarborough
Mainly self – taught, Barbara came to ceramics late in life in 1999, having spent thirty - five years working in the fashion industry.
She lived in France from 2006 - 2013 and exhibited widely there, and on her return to UK, she set up her studio in Hove.
‘During my earlier career in the fashion industry, I began to explore clay as an alternative medium to fabric. In fashion, the layering of textiles and the power of the cut merge to find new balances and forms, the biomorphic and geometric held in tension.
I’m fascinated by the geometry in nature, especially as growth and random chaotic forces skew and distort the initial perfect symmetry. My ceramics explore the multi-layered effects nature creates via the laying down of strata, weathering and erosion.
I work with a grogged porcelain, using Nerikomi techniques. This involves adding oxides or stains to the clay to colour it and then joining, slicing and rejoining layers of colours to build up patterns through the clay. I then slab-build the pieces. After sanding and biscuit firing to 1046 degrees, the pieces are re-sanded and then further decorated, using various resists. They are then smoke-fired and polished’.
In 2017, Barbara was delighted to be accepted as a member of The Sussex Guild, a professional group of talented designers/makers, with whom she now regularly exhibits. She has also been a frequent exhibitor at Art in Clay.
We are pleased to be showing her work for the first time.
Originally from Harrogate, Jane currently lives in the US.
Jane is essentially untrained although both her parents, David Morris and Margaret Morris, were painters. She admits while growing up the thought of painting was always in the background, it just took a while to surface.
She has a BA Honours in the History & Theory of Art from Essex University and worked for many years in PR.
It was while working at the National Gallery in London as Head of Press, she felt the time was right for her to try her hand at painting. By this time Jane was clear about how she wanted her work to look, and that she wanted to paint with oils, so she bought some paints and finally made a start – from the beginning it felt very natural.
She is a colourist working within the tradition of realism but aims to push the boundary with colour and form to achieve a semi-abstract quality in her work. She paints ‘alla prima’ directly onto the canvas with no preliminary drawing using handmade oil colours with natural pigments and enjoys the physical quality of the paint and spontaneity of this method.
Jane paints full-time in her studio in Washington DC, inspired by the surrounding landscape and the simple domestic details of life. The effect of light on water and the colours in nature are recurring themes or just a shadow on the kitchen table can be a starting point. She has always loved still-life and the British painters William Nicholson, Mary Fedden and Euan Uglow were early influences.
In 2018 Jane was commissioned by the Belmond Cadogan Hotel, London, to paint a series of eleven large abstract paintings which would form the centrepiece of suites in the newly re-opened luxury hotel. The paintings were bold and intensely coloured and have provided a new exciting direction for her. The three large abstract pieces in Silson’s Autumn exhibition represent a continuum of this new artistic direction.
We are delighted to be showing Jane's work for the first time.