The High Country
I've got a new exhibition which opened this week:
The High Country
Paintings of the Pennine landscapes of the Yorkshire Dales .
May 21st - June 18th. 2014
Herriot's Gallery, Hawes, North Yorkshire.
Opening times: 10 - 4 Sunday: 11 - 4 Wednesday: closed
(Open by appointment at other times)
I've been working on The High Country since last September. Its an exhibition very close to my heart because it centres on the parts of the Dales I first knew and grew to love. For me one of the greatest pleasures of living in Yorkshire is the thrill of climbing a big hill and looking at the landscape from a high viewpoint. This exhibition, thanks to the kind invitation of Glenn at Herriot's Gallery in Hawes, has given me to celebrate this in paint.
To see a large selection of the paintings from the exhibition CLICK HERE
New Screen Prints: Masham & Durham
Elvet Bridge, Durham
There are certain places which draw you back and, for me, Durham is one of those. Although I haven't lived in the city since the early 1980s I return frequently, still moved by its glorious skyline which John Ruskin called the eighth wonder of the world.
Elvet Bridge is old, a medieval survival, and one of the few bridges in Britain which still has houses built on it. At one end of the bridge is a dark archway - the entrance to the House of Correction - a forerunner of Durham gaol.
The print is a six colour reduction screen print which shows the view from upstream of the city.
This will be one of a number of prints which will be on show at Printed by Hand - part of Masham's Spring event, Crafted by Hand, on 25th and 26th of May in Masham Town Hall.
For more details about Crafted by Hand CLICK HERE.
The second new print is a view of Masham from the East side of Wenleydale. Beyond the fifteenth century spire of St Mary's church are the hills of the Burn Valley and Colsterdale. This is the view I see most of the time when I return home.
The print is an eight colour reduction screen print.
If you would like to enquire about purchasing a print CLICK HERE.
The Black Rabbits of Ladyhill
One of my favourite subjects over the years has been Lady Hill in Wensleydale. Driving up the Dale the road takes you through the viollage of Aysgarth and then, as you drive on towards Hawes, Ladyhill is there ahead of you. It’s very distinctive, crowned with a group of elderly Scots pines.
For a long time I have been trying to find out more about the hill. It was planted with tree’s to celebrate one of Queen Vctoria’s jubilees (still not sure which one) but I had heard hints that there was more to the place than that.
A few days ago I was teaching an art group and, during a local history discussion, an unlikely story emerged: Ladyhill used to be famous for black rabbits which were sold to the Czar of Russia.
I went away and did some research on the excellent Out of Oblivion website and a few other places. There was a purpose built rabbit warren with a high enclosure wall at Ladyhill. The wall was both to keep specially-bred rabbits in and to keep local wild rabbits from getting amongst them and doing what rabbits do so well.
Moon Over Ladyhill
The rabbits in the warren were a variety that was born with black fur. As they matured the fur turned to silver. Both types of pelt were farmed and sold to the hat trade – and some of them regularly went to Russia. The trade began in the eighteenth century and continued to the 1930s. The local Wensleydale Railway (parts of it are still running) was used to take the pelts away in the latter part of this business.
Limited Edition Print
I’ve recently done two paintings of Ladyhill (the ones at the top of the page) that are featured in The High Country – my next exhibition - which is at Herriot’s Gallery, Hawes from May 21st.
For details CLICK HERE.
I’ve also done a screen print of Ladyhill in winter and a limited edition print of Ladyhill, (above and left) both of which are available from the Masham Gallery.
To contact CLICK HERE.
More of my work is always available at The Masham Gallery
CLICK HERE to visit