Friday, 18 July 2014

Art in Action review


My first time and thoughts of this very high profile, top event of the year..

A couple of times I've heard about this event.  "Why aren't you going, Jamie..."    
 "You must go..."       "It's just the best event..."   "..The work and the quality.."  "...ooh this and ooh that.."

Okay... I get it.. thank you..

I was chatting to Vic Bamforth, and then up came the Art in Action event again.. That was it, when Vic said he was going and if I wanted to go..I just had to.

Not an early start, got there around 10:30 (it opened at 10am) and to the most unusual parking system I've ever seen, but more on that later.

It was seen that the day was going to be the hottest of the year, and it was living up to the radio and TV word ...    HOT.. or two REALLY HOT..

The map we had from their website was very useful, showing places to eat and the different marquees, in alphabetical and numerical order (someone had done this before, it made it so easy to get around)
The food and drink stalls were brilliantly positioned, so when we needed a drink, we didn't have to go far.. and the food was fabulous Red onion and Tomato on a beautiful Ciabatta bread, with Elderflower juice.

First stop for us was the Glass tent, this was Vics area of expertise, and it was great to be introduced to some of his old friends and some of the Glassblowers that I have met  at the Ruskin Glass Centre, who have used the blowing studio.

Christiaan D. Maas with Vic Bamforth in front of Christiaans work

So that was great to walk around the tent with so much fabulous glass on show,  and the quality was exceptional, I was blown away by some of the work, trying to get your head around how it was done...
 (yeah, can't help it, I just feel the need to understand some of the process, then it all makes sense) 
I do appreciate the beauty first..

Catriona  MacKenzie was showing people how she works beads over a flame.. 
some beautiful work, great earrings and other jewellery.

I've met Cat a few times now, she comes to the glass blowing studio to make larger pieces. I'll put a bit more about Cat's work later..

In the Textiles tent were some beautiful and unusual pieces..

I liked this, and know that my Mom would like it's just mad.. but seriously cool
notice the standard lamp behind the chair..

Love the Dog, but the newspaper was marvelous, the detail..

Not in the woodwork tent, but in the Practical Class Teachers Exhibition tent
so, while there are classes going on, the teachers work can be seen (and bought) from this varied  range.

This is one of the pieces that welcomes you into the Sculpture Park
I'm not the biggest fan of sculpture work, I appreciate it, but don't really warm to it..
This wire piece was very cool..

This was huge. The guy who made these was working on a massive laminated block.
3ft square 7ft high.. 6 months work..gulp

Here's more of his work.. very traditional skill and style. 
But skills that we need more people to get into, if not for new work, for restoring pieces.

This piece by James Morton-Evans, was in the Best of the Best tent,
Vic and I had already seen his fabulous work in the Woodwork tent..
Exceptional quality, the timber was beautifully worked, this in Sycamore, looked bleached.
His interiors were superb.. For me this was the most outstanding piece of woodworking at the show

These little guys were great, Penguins in the state we've seen them in on the nature programs, 
keeping warm, huddled together..

These were very natural..I loved the use of the driftwood,
I think this piece was called 'Under and over the Waves'

Here's a detail of under..great fish..

Looks great doesn't it..  frayed fabric joints worked really well, great to match the loose cushions

So in the Best of the Best tent, people get to vote for their favourite
Not an easy task, there can be many different ways of choosing, 

Which one would you like to take home, the most skilled. 
Comparing one skill against another, that's never going to be easy.

Other things going on.. Workshops and classes

A teacher just going through some of the lesson, brilliant isn't it.
You can prebook before the event and there is a tent (25 this year)
where you can get your Practical class tickets

a class in full swing

A life drawing class from one side, where the same model is being sculpted from the other

Peter Wood (appropriate name) demonstrating some pole lathe techniques to the class

Michel Del Campo.. this guys work is absolutely out of this world.
Both Vic and I just couldn't stop looking at it, 
this piece is the same as the painting he has in the Best of the Best, he's seriously talented.

and this is his work..

I didn't crop some of these so that you can get a feel of the atmosphere and surroundings

So almost back to the start again. Christiaan was demonstrating his wonderful glass blowing techniques.
That Apple on the marver is what he's making..
when he asked if anyone wanted to help make some twists in his piece..
well I had too, would have been rude not to..

This is Nicki Steel, and her first time in front of a large audience 

Nicki 'spun' this plate, she was great. Well done Nicki.

And to end this piece is one of Michel Del Campo's paintings,
this also tell's you about the weather we had too..

So,  that was my first experience of the Art in Action event..

I thoroughly enjoyed the day, and have to agree with Vic, that you could quite easily spend a few days here. Wonderful, till next time.

Oh, one last thing. Did I mention the car parking. Well It was a little mad, I've only ever parked like that when I've had to park on a ferry. Yes.. parallel parking, our whole line was wrong and we had to all reverse back n forward to get closer to the line next to us.. A big concern, no but in those temperatures, we could have been in the event quicker and maybe the road wouldn't have been so blocked up with traffic as we were coming on to the site.

Hope you enjoyed, 

All the best