Saturday, 31 July 2010

Feedback and debate

We appreciate feedback and we love a good debate. The great thing about discussing art is that there are no right and wrong opinions. Everyone's view is valid, no matter how diverse or extreme. At a recent private view I over heard an in-depth discussion about a painting that was being described as "Goya meets Michael Jackson". I also heard someone remark angrily "that's shit, I couldn't be paid to put that on my wall". Love them both.

When we put on an exhibition at View, the first thing we aim for is high impact. Of course we need to sell art to stay in business, but it is a secondary consideration when selecting work and curating exhibitions. First and foremost we have to be stimulated by the art, provoke a strong reaction, and enjoy the viewers' response.

Some people like to comment directly to us when they visit the gallery and that is very much appreciated. But for many, a gallery can be an intimidating place (we really hope ours isn't) and so we offer a number of ways of commenting on what we do. There is the comment box at the end of every blog, Twitter messages, postings on our Facebook pages, or comments on the work published on Flickr and YouTube. Whatever your preference, we hope you can spare a few minutes to tell us what you think - about what we do, don't do, or anything art related.

By the way, the picture above is of Sarah, our gallery manager, and she'll hate me for putting her photo on this blog. This is often how an artists feels when they are putting their art on display for everyone to critique. Some enjoy the attention and some are more reserved, but without exception they all crave feedback, both good and bad - indifference is the biggest insult of all.

Sunday, 11 July 2010

Haiti Benefit Exhibition

We are proud to be hosting an exhibition which has the dual benefit of introducing some unique international artists whilst supporting a very good cause.

The Haiti Benefit Exhibition at View will be on from 22-25 July before it embarks on a UK tour. We are delighted to be the first venue to show these talented artists from Jacmel, Haiti, and launch the travelling exhibition. The vibrant colours and free expression in the abstract compositions relay messages of sadness and hope.

Earlier this year we all heard of the devastating effects of the earthquake in Haiti. One of the victims was an art community centre called FOSAJ, causing damage to buildings and death. The founder, Patrick Boucard, has set up a relief fund to help rebuild the centre so it can support the resident artists and the many handicapped and homeless people who benefit from their work. Follow the links for more information on FOSAJ and the Haiti Relief fund.

We at View were touched by the stories the art tells and impressed with the strength of expression in the painting. This is evidenced in the pain of the figure in the painting above, 'The Flight for Forgiveness' by Haiti artist Narbal.

We may not yet know the names of all the exhibiting artists, but they deserve a mention. The exhibition will include paintings by:

Prince Luc
Destin Domond
Rose Marie lamour
Desire Obelto
Jean Garibaldi
Marc Arthur Lamitie
Eddy Prevot
Jean Paul Sylvaince

We hope many people can enjoy the work and support the foundation in the 4 days of the show.

Saturday, 10 July 2010

Naked Truths Preview

Naked Truths is about how we view things, as well as what we see. We are challenged to look inside our minds and consider what we find hard to reveal and why we keep things hidden away. The show's artists explore a variety of subjects where we may find exposure difficult to address – nudity, sexuality, death, and fear. Our response may be shock, laughter, sorrow or reflection, but there is little room for indifference.

The art work also reveals some amazing creativity, technique and beauty. Each piece stands alone with aesthetic quality as well as a deeper sense of meaning.

The context of the subjects is significant. We may see nudity in a gallery as art, whereas the same image in a sex shop is pornography. Similarly, a death theme may provoke a fear of horrific memories for some people or innocent comedy to others. When we view these images, we are often looking at a reflection of ourselves.

There are seven artists featuring in Naked Truths, each with a different combination of media, style and message:

  • After longer inspection, the apparent chaos of the angular shapes and striking colours in Thomas Dowdeswell’s painting starts to generate familiar figurative forms and strange stories.
  • Peter Bullen is influenced by the artist/model relationship and contrasts the confident contortionist with the vulnerable first-timer in his nude portraits.
  • There is a wonderful innocence and charm to David Thompson’s male figurative paintings, with an undercurrent of commentary on our attitude to sexuality.
  • In ‘The Sex Shop’ series, Simon Ledson plays with our minds as we explore apparently innocent forms in imprints and wallpaper.
  • Russell Oliver's large and dramatic paintings explore the attitudes to life and death through the eyes of different subjects, including a self portrait.
  • Tim Perks challenges the traditional figurative sculpture, as the unusual poses and compositions of the female form involve imaginary cross breeding of species.
  • In Becky Kidson's 'Young Hearts' installation three friends take it in turns to jump into a bowl of mirrors.

Naked Truths presents some beautiful art with provocative themes and offers us a mirror to reveal our hidden thoughts. The show runs from July 29th to September 12th.