Winter Show, 2020

By 20th December 2019April 27th, 2020No Comments

Winter Exhibition 2020

24th January - 5th April, 2020

We are delighted to start off 2020 with our Winter Show featuring a small selection of fabulously talented artists.

From always popular York artist, Emma Whitelock, to emerging young painter Liam Dunne, whose beautifully rendered figures first caught our attention at his degree show in 2017.

We are also pleased to welcome for the first time, textile artist, Ros Johnson from York, along with painters Sarah Needham from London, Ashar from Somerset and Charlotte Black from Harrogate.  And  a big welcome to German painter, Claudia Rega, in her first UK show.

Finally, we are  delighted to announce the return of ceramicist Pietro Sanna to the gallery.  Pietro showed his beautiful ceramics with us in our very first exhibition –  they sold out quickly!  Following a hiatus in his practise, Pietro is showing a  selection of his new wonderful work.

Further details of each artist can be found below.  Please click on each image to expand.

A varied, rich and exciting show!  We think you will agree.

We look forward to welcoming you


Originally from Surrey, painter Sharon Goodsall works under the name Ashar, an ancient Hebrew word meaning to go straight, or as she interprets it, being true to yourself. Ashar graduated with a BA (Hons) in Fine Art from Plymouth in 2012

Since graduating, I have continually challenged my work and practice, and set expressive goals for myself; usually, this is about conveying feeling to the viewer. I use abstraction, and I am particularly interested in mark making; how this affects the viewer. My work is often described as emotional and moving which is what I set out to achieve.

My love of the moors is profound, it is a part of who I am as a painter. When I am up on the moors, I feel I am in the sky, a part of a whole connected to and part of the cosmos. This connection is intense and spiritual. Seeing only what is in front of me but aware of what lays beyond my visibility, sensing the fauna and flora, hearing the brooks and the snuffle of the moors pony, that which cannot be seen but is felt and heard. I endeavour to paint my responses to place and not what I see. I want to create work that has the ability to be felt.

My latest body of work is about expressing that awareness

The materials I use, and my processes, are an important part of my practice. I work in oil on wood panels, with other media such as oil pastel, graphite, metal leaf, crayon, ink pencils and anything else that may fit the piece.

Ashar works from her studio in the Somerset Levels and has work in collections around the world, including Singapore, Australia and Europe, In 2017 she was selected for the Royal Academy exhibition and her work sold on the opening night. She is a network member of Royal West Academy of Art and exhibits in their annual shows.

The gallery was not found!

Charlotte Black

From Harrogate, emerging abstract artist, Charlotte, studied Fine Art at University College for the Creative Arts, Kent, graduating in 2007.

‘A fascination for eroded surfaces and what lies beneath has always been the inspiration for my paintings.

My most recent work is based on landscapes, particularly those of the Yorkshire Dales and Lake District as well as those further afield.  It is created using various materials including Alabaster plaster, scrim, found materials and watercolours. I intend to evoke an emotional reaction to my work and hope that what I feel when creating each piece is timeless and apparent’.

Charlotte works from her studio in Harrogate.

Liam Dunne

From Grimsby, Liam graduated in 2017 from Leeds Arts University with a degree in Fine Art. It was at his degree show that we first encountered his fabulous work, stopping  us in our tracks.  We have been closely following his development with interest.
‘My work is mainly figurative, focusing mostly on the texture of skin, and the texture of paint itself, allowing me to build up thick impasto to the extent my work is sometimes almost sculptural. Yet some of my recent work has tried to show the other side through using reflections and almost going to full abstraction.
I am fascinated with painting people. I want viewers to feel the presence of the person I have painted, so that they could glimpse out of the corner of their eye and think for a moment there is someone really there with them. As such my paintings have begun to feel almost like a sculpture, crossing the boundaries of the mediums. The texture of skin and the texture of paint are both so interesting to me, and somehow intertwined. I do not necessarily try to imitate skin, rather letting the paint guide me, but still retaining some control. People should be able to look at skin in my paintings and be able to tell character just from that, just as you can in life.
It is therefore quite a leap to the other half of the paintings. Juxtaposed against this sculptural realism is the exact opposite. Taking a character and reducing it not just to two dimensions but taking away form. The distorted fragmentation of the abstracted reflections serves to show what is beneath all that flesh – I try to show the undercurrent of someone’s personality and feelings which leads to the fragmented image that I often find myself painting.
My paintings serve to show multiple layers of a person. It is important I know the person in order to portray them accurately. I do not consider them portraits as such. It is important for me to show the story of somebody through their skin, through their outward persona, and also what they do not show to the outside world. Yet my paintings always project some of my personality too, organic as I react to the paint, while the subjects are often isolated figures’.
Liam works from his studio in Grimsby, building up his body of work and frequently exhibiting in shows and competitions. In 2018, he appeared in a televised heat of Sky Portrait Artist of the Year. In 2019, he was shortlisted for the Jackson Art Prize and was a prize winner at the Feren’s Art Gallery Open, Hull.
We are delighted to be showing Liam’s paintings as he embarks on his art career.

Ros Johnson

Ros takes an interdisciplinary approach to practice through the disciplines of mixed media painting, drawing and textiles. She exploits the inherent characteristics of her materials, taking an improvisational approach in her work.
Ros views the creative process as a haptic collaborative relationship between maker, process and material. Thus, creating tensions between mediums. Heightening the presence of ‘the unknown’, which results in inexhaustible momentum and spontaneity that is so important to her work and concepts.
Overcrowded compositions with an assortment of lines, challenge fashionable minimalist ideals in abstract art and aim to explore how different types of marks relate to each other, and are an enquiry into what they represent and illustrate for the viewer. The idea, of line, space and ‘inbetween space’ crossing over and under in three-dimensional form, drew Ros to explore urban construction sites as her primary stimulation.
‘It is the presence of line, deconstructed surfaces and intricate layering that binds my practice. This concept can be seen as a ‘Hierarchy of Texture’, where tensions exist between marks, drawn lines and organic mark-making. This concept of hierarchy should help the viewer understand my approach and hopefully stimulate them to find a level of meaning’.
Ros works from her studio inYork.

Sarah Needham

Sarah graduated in 1989 and 1994 with a BA in Fine Art and Education from Hatfield Polytechnic and an MA in Development Studies from South Bank University respectively. In 2015-2017 she studied traditional Chinese Sumi-e ink painting under Professor Ding in Jiangxi, China
‘The pieces in Silson’s Winter Show are part of a series called ‘Making Decisions in The Dark’. The series is based on the premise that pigments carry their story, and that story is our story of interconnectedness. Each piece is designed to create a space to fall into, with which we make a personal connection. In a way, a small poetic moment is achieved, connecting the current lived life to our history as people of transition and exchange.

The pigments in these pieces are ochres and carbon blacks, (both bone black and vine black) which have been used since prehistoric cave painting, and like people, are universally spread across the world, but also from the classical period along the silk trade routes through to the slave trade, privateering, and the abolition of slavery. And ultramarine, a pigment once precious, traded from Afghanistan, across the Mediterranean and Aegean seas (now routes of migration) and used in Mosques and Churches since the middle ages, which was synthesised and made inexpensive by French and German chemists in the Industrial Revolution. In determining my research, I look for periods of flux and change that resonance with the now. In creating my pieces, I make space for peace and remembrance.

My work takes the form of abstract spaces, spaces in which to lose yourself and to remember. I am indebted to Twentieth Century artists for the freedom to play in these colour fields – Rothko, Frankenthaler, Kandinsky, with their breakthroughs with colour as substance. I also feel indebted to the nameless Church painters of the Middle Ages for whom pigments had their own symbolism. I must not forget to mention Professor Ding who taught me Chinese ink painting in Jiangxi, and the legacy of which finds expression through my use of tone to create space.
Sarah is a full- time artist and regularly exhibits in the UK and overseas. Her work is held in private collections in UK, Australia, USA, the Middle East and Japan

Claudia Rega

Claudia was born in Germany. She studied art at the Freie Akademie der Bildenden Künste (Free Academy of Fine Arts) in Essen, Germany and was a pupil of painter Bernard Lokai, a former student of Gerhard Richter. She graduated in 2015 having been awarded the meisterschüler prize – an honoured title earned by the top student.

‘The paintings in Silson Contemporary’s Winter Show are from my Remembered Landscape series.

What “happens” to a place when observation, presence and perception through my eyes are starting, what happens to me? How do I deal with impressions, memories of nature, landscape and the human being in my paintings?

I’m interested in the process of my inner perception, how I can transfer that into my paintings. There is a need to settle, to be somewhere, to find a habitat. How does that work, what are the changes in nature, both the human and the place?’
We are delighted to be the first British gallery to be showing Claudia’s work. Claudia has exhibited widely in Germany and works from her studio in Essen.

The gallery was not found!

Pietro Sanna

To read about gallery ceramicist, Pietro, please click here

Emma Whitelock

To read about gallery artist Emma, please click here