Blog on the run…..

It’s been an incredibly busy couple of weeks at the QA.  As you will have seen from our news section, our annual summer exhibition is now up and running.  It truly does look stunning and we’re so pleased with how it looks.

Gallery One has attracted attention because of the unusual pieces of new work by Ruth Singer.  Ruth came to look at some of our oldest quilts and was inspired by the stains and areas of wear and tear the quilts had acquired over their long lives.  The piece in our front window, which she calls Tracery, reflects the way that quilts disintegrate over time – the fabric decaying but the stitching remaining in place.

She has also produced some wonderful stained pieces which our visitors can touch and spread out to see the full effect.

The patchwork blocks have proved very popular with young and old alike.  These are blocks of wood covered in fabric which can be moved around to form different patchwork patterns, although our younger visitors like to make buildings out of them.  On our preview evening we had a beautiful castle made by Elin, and during our opening morning two lovely young visitors made a wonderful house!!

Many of our visitors have been surprised to find that the antique quilts in the exhibition are so worn but of course these are the ones that Ruth found so fascinating.  Some of them have their reverse sides on show in order to display the wonderful staining on the back or worn patches, like the two below:

     

One of the pieces is merely a fragment of an unfinished top – but what a beauty it is, complete with paper pieces that our visitors can examine through a magnifying glass.

There truly is something to interest everyone – whether you are a quilter or not.  In fact, on the opening morning (at the risk of sounding sexist) many of the gentlemen visitors surprised themselves by actually enjoying looking at the exhibits.

 

 

The exhibition in Gallery Two, a retrospective of the work of Bobby Britnell, was an absolute delight to put up.  The four Trustees who make up the Exhibition Committee (including yours truly) got far too excited when we realised we could turn a corner of the space into a reading room.  Bobby’s two pieces Library and Bookshelves became the focal point and we dressed the rest of the room accordingly, including a table borrowed form our local furniture store on which was placed a book called, appropriately, Minerva – genius idea, Joy!!

If you want to see more photos there are lots on our facebook page:

https://www.facebook.com/www.quilt.org.uk/

I really don’t have time to post more – it’s time for the last episode of Poldark!!

Suffice to say we had SUCH fun putting up the whole exhibition although we are now exhausted. However, tomorrow is another day and we go again with a two-day workshop tutored by Bobby which we’re SO looking forward too.  I’ll post some photos of that as soon as I can.  Until then, thanks for reading!!!

Busy, busy…

It’s been a very busy week in Llanidloes.  Today was the annual Carnival so the town was packed.  It’s not often you get total gridlock in a small town in Mid-Wales but we had it today.  The weather was relatively kind.  Not as hot as it has been recently but at least it didn’t pour down with rain – always a bonus if you live here!!

Hopefully our Carnival visitors found time to visit the Artisans’ Emporium here at Minerva Arts Centre.  There truly is some wonderful work on show and there are items for sale that are one-offs.  For example, Madeleine Vale is selling some fantastic ceramic works like this little fox’s head.

Jude Riley does amazing marbling on paper and silk and has gorgeous scarves, notebooks for sale.  She also sells these fabulous limestone coasters.

Chrissie Menzies is back with her beautifully made felted items, including this exquisite nuno felted scarf.  The felting is so fine and I know what a perfectionist she is!

All of our visitors have been talking about the unusual lamps made by Alan Mathews from recycled bits and pieces and yesterday I saw someone totter to the till with about three of John Morgan’s beautifully turned wooden bowls.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mike Browning is a potter who lives in Llanidloes and produces wonderful, classic items in his studio.

Sarah Hill uses recycled glass to make fantastic jewellery and decorative items for the home.  Sorrel Sevier also makes gorgeous jewellery from silver and semi-precious stones. Absolutely beautiful!

 

 

 

 

 

Susan Mulcock is a felt maker from Shropshire who is particularly well known for her wet felted seascapes like the one below.  Who would have thought that this is all made from wool!!

 

The beautiful watercolour on the left, below, is just one example of the work of Steve Terris while the atmospheric Peter Lloyd painting on the right depicts a local scene in oils.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Last but by no mean least is this lovely print of Watergate Baptist Church in Brecon, produced by local graphic artist and photographer Keith Wheeler.

You have to agree that there is something that everyone to want to take home in the Artisans’ Emporium!!

Finally, we were very pleased to welcome Bobby Britnell and Sarah Burgess to Llanidloes this week.  Bobby and Sarah are members of the Textile Study Group and were with us to discuss the staging of their exhibition DIS/rupt, which will be at the Minerva Arts Centre next spring.  Bobby also delivered her work for her retrospective exhibition Backwards Looking Forwards which, along with Ruth Singer’s exhibition Fragments, forms part of our annual summer exhibition.  This year we feature some of our own collection of quilts and the exhibition, which runs from 5th August until 16th September, is called Timelines – A Line In Time.  Don’t miss it!!!

Spring forward

Well, the clocks went forward last weekend and doesn’t it make a difference!  More daylight hours to do all the things we’ve been putting off and hopefully a bit of sunshine to do them in.  I’m getting this blog post down now because I know that, come tomorrow evening (given my inability to keep myself clean) I will be up to my elbows in printing ink after the first day of Linda Paris’ Print and Stitch workshop.  I can’t wait to get started and I’ll keep you updated at the weekend on progress so far. Then on Tuesday we’re going to be putting some stitch to fabric.  We still have room to squeeze you in if you want to come.

Saturday sees the opening of our first Vintage Fair of the year which runs from 1st – 12th April.  It always amazes me how many things are there that I have to restrain myself from buying.  If I got my act together I could probably fill my own stand.  For any fan of all things vintage it’s like an Aladdin’s cave of treasures: china, clothing, books, records, furniture, jewellery – the list is endless.  Come and see for yourself.  Open every day except Sundays.

Our next workshop will be the one tutored by Rosie James on 6th May and we still have places but they’re filling up fast.  Likewise the ones led by Cas Holmes, Hilary Beattie and Sylvia Paul.  If you’re interested in those and our summer workshops (Ruth Singer and Bobby Britnell) see our Workshops page for more details and information on how to book.