Beaux Arts Solo Show 11 November – 24 December 2022
My biennial solo show opened last week at Beaux Arts Bath. This stunning gallery is situated in a listed Georgian building, adjacent to the world famous Abbey and Roman Baths.
I’ve exhibited with Beaux Arts for over 24 years and always enjoy the opportunity to showcase new work in this prestigious venue. This year there are strong Arctic and African themes, inspired by my lastest wildlife trips. Last June I joined Wildlife Worldwide’s Festival of Wildlife in Spitsbergen where I encountered walruses, polar bears and Arctic foxes.
The walruses have inspired a lot of the sculptures in my show. I was keen to explore how they communicate and express themselves in their daily environment. Simple behaviours, such as scratching, sleeping and wondering where their mate has gone.
I chose a matt finish for the glaze to articulate their beautiful shapes allow a fuller appreciation of their intricate body wrinkles and facial detailing. Walruses change colour depending on their body temperature. The walruses who have just hauled themselves out of the Arctic water are a pale grey, but over time they warm up to a chocolate brown. Babies are always warmer and have a thicker coat, giving them their distinctive dark brown colouring.
I also feature three polar bears in the show, again inspired by my Arctic adventure. Watching these majestic animals going about their daily life was a real privilege and provided a wonderful insight into a rare animal.
I used a new matt glaze for this trio of polar bear sculptures, limiting the use of shiny glaze to highlight their piercing, predatory eyes. The sense of engagement this provides is very striking.
No solo show of mine would be complete without the inclusion of my African favourites, painted or wild dogs, hyena, aardvark and warthogs. The wild dog sculptures are either sitting or fidgeting and fully engaged with what’s happening around them. Their ears are in a state of constant alert. Their predatory eyes draw you in.
When seen in a group, wild dogs take on another dimension. Their distinctive patterned markings merge and we are more acutely aware of the threat posed by this fearsome pack of predators.
Three bronze sculptures are also featured in the show: the bull Elephant Giant of the Plains, Pangolin and my latest release, Alpine Ibex. All of these bronze sculptures are released in strictly limited editions. They are cast and finished in the renowned Castle Fine Art Foundry in Stroud.
If you are visiting Bath, a World Heritage Site and fantastic Christmas shopping destination, be sure to visit Beaux Arts Gallery. My solo show runs until Christmas.