Malicia is taking over the blog and we will do something completely new around this time around. Rita asked me to look though all the pictures taken during Festival of Speed on April 3rd and edit the best ones. Thing is, so many pictures were good that once I sat down and started editing, I ended up having over 100 imaged processed and complied into two groups: cars and motorcycles. It would be a waste not to use them all!
We have done quite a few image based posts and they are always well received, but never before they included so many shots in one go. It feels more like proper photo reportage than a visual recording of a particular area or event. And why not, to be frank. The Festival of Speed was so diverse and detailed, that you had to go Japanese tourist mode to see it all. Each car is a different tale and they all form a part of what makes British heritage so important and valued.
It was a whirl of colours, wheels, brands and historical artefacts. You can’t show it all in just few clicks. The rule says that one photo should be enough to tell a story, but sometimes you need one hundred pictures to do justice to the event. Mind, we only had a mobile phone so don’t expect that we will win Pulitzer Prize for feature photography (we will leave that honour to Tyler Hicks) but we tried our best. There will be few cut off heads or wobbly horizons and strange angles on the shots. But this comes as a part of the package – you have a small tool and a very limited time and too many objects that just can’t be missed.
Although Malicia is usually responsible for visual aspect of the blog, this post is the first time she was responsible for choosing, editing, chronological order of all the images and commentary. Proper editorial job and she is very proud of herself.
It is very important to support local cultural events – either by attendance or writing about them. Pop and local culture events don`t have big budgets, they don’t often find themselves presented to big audiences and they hardly receive coverage in major newspapers. But they are crucial to understanding of local history, customs, feelings or grievances. Such local events often shape and form individuals that become huge stars later on. Want an example: try to understand The Smiths without detailed knowledge of Manchester area in the 80s. Or better – try to understand Jeremy Clarkson and Top Gear phenomena without attending one of those fairs full of old racing cars, past glories and strange characters.
We hope you will enjoy our (hectic) coverage of Speed Festival 2016. If we got any car brands wrong, please point it out. We`ll correct ourselves.
West Midland life can be hard if you are an outgoing person without a car. Herefordshire and Worcestershire are sparsely populated and you need your own transport to get to many interesting places. Birmingham has an excellent public transport system but the further you are based from Birmingham, the worse it gets. At Vanadian Avenue, we are constantly keeping our eyes and ears open in search for some local things to do, yet we are not able to get to all events, just because there is no decent bus connection. Luckily, sometimes we can get a lift and we enjoy a fantastic day out.
Map of the event
Old photos always get Malicia`s attention
We learnt about Bromyard Speed Festival by accident. An unconfirmed internet rumor that Jeremy Clarkson has been booked to open the first edition spread quickly like Californian forest fire causing great excitement among locals. We were a bit skeptical as he is currently filming the equivalent of “Top Gear” for Amazon Prime, but tempted to see him in real life, we decided to give it a go.
The event was to take place on Sunday, 3rd of April so exactly at 11:00 am, we arrived in Bromyard and we set ourselves up on the main street waiting for the vintage car show to start.
Car parade in full swing!
Rare, precious and still kicking!
You could buy some curios trinkets at the festival
For those of you who know very little about Bromyard, we need to say few words about it. It is a medieval market town located in Herefordshire, placed exactly halfway between Hereford (22 miles) and Worcester (20 miles). According to Bromyard and Winslow Parish Council statistics, it has nearly 4,500 inhabitants, several pubs (including two traditional half-timber “black and white” buildings), one local library, one theatre (The Conquest Theatre) small S-F Museum, two hotels and St. Peter’s Church dating back to Norman times. Bromyard may seem like a quiet place but it has several very active clubs and societies organizing nationally known events such as Bromyard Gala, Nozstock Festival of Performing Arts or Folk Festival among others. It also has a strong claim to motoring fame – Morgan Cars were originally set up in Bromyard before moving to Malvern and The Chairmen of the Austin, Bean and Morgan motor companies lived inside or close to town for many years. You can learn more about Bromyard motoring history on festival’s official website: http://www.bromyardspeedfestival.co.uk/history.html
We want this car, like now!
Preparation for the car parade
Car parade is about to begin
By 11 o’clock, the town was already packed and several vintage cars were driving through the town centre forming a small parade. At first, we thought that we have missed the formal opening and Jeremy Clarkson’s speech but soon we found out that that Mr Clarkson’s appearance was not confirmed at all and it was probably an April 1st joke, a clever publicity stunt or a local gossip. To be very honest, the entire event was very well organized and there was no need for any special guests. Rita is not a big fan of the pompous presenter so she wasn’t bother by the fact he wasn’t there. At least nobody got beaten up when the food stand ran out of burgers around midday!
General view of the festival
Rows and rows of truly unique vehicles
We love antiques. Hand on the heart. One of these days we will do a blog from Antiques Roadshow!
First editions of any events are usually plagued with many unfortunate incidents so Speed Festival organizers should be praised for a nearly flawless delivery. Each point of interest has been clearly marked on maps, volunteers were helpful and well informed and guests were directed to the right places. The organizers took serious security measures and the visitors were separated from the car parade by proper fencing. We had 3 emergency ambulances points, West Mercia police stand in Co-op car park and two emergency vehicle access points. The only thing we could complain about was the prices. Although the event was generally admission free, you had to pay 3 pounds to access The Paddock situated by The Conquest Theatre and another 3 pounds for the flyers or the event plan. We didn’t mind paying for the access to Paddocks as we had a chance to see the famous Blue Bird, but paying the same amount of money for a single leaflet seems a bit too much. Other than that – we are truly impressed. Overall, the Bromyard Festival of Speed attracted more than 3000 people, so hopefully it will become another annual attraction for the picturesque town.
Festivals as such always bring sellers who offer many artifacts from the good old days
If Mal wanted to buy every old photograph she fancied, she`d have to live at Tate Gallery…
Talking about the car parade – it was a very impressive sight. More than 130 vintage and classic cars took part in it, driving slowly in circles from Rowberry Road, passing the Council Corner, turning into The Cut then into the Broad Street, and finally arriving on High Street and Rowberry Road again. The cars were touring in groups of 20-30 cars at 20 minutes intervals. You could see the very impressive Royce-Royce Bentley MK VI Special (produced between 1946 and 1952) limousines in motion carrying up to 5 people, a lot of classic Morgan cars (Plus 4 Coupe from 1954, Morgan Super Sports from 1933 or Family 3 Wheeler from 1935), superb vintage cars (previously unknown to us SunBeams, Diatto Targa Florio, Riley Brooklands and Railton Straight Eight) or fan favourites Hill Climb Cars (including Porsche Cayman SV-R, Caterham Seven or Jensen Healey). Hillclimbing motorsport is a fascinating thing and maybe one day we will write more about it. You can read a short description about it here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hillclimbing
Younger visitors were also mesmerized by a large collection of classic racing bikes and rally cars. We have to say, we are not interested in motoring or racing cars but some models were simply stunning. It was hard not to fall in love with them. Rita was especially pleased to spot a classic Ferrari and Mal was happy to discover that one of the vintage cars took part in The Mdina Grand Prix Classic Car Event in 2015.
Mdina Grand Prix 2015!
We have mentioned the Blue Bird above but it needs to be explained why this car was the biggest attraction of the festival. We have never heard of the Blue Bird before but it has a fantastic history worth of a blockbuster movie. It was designed by brilliant French automobile engineer Louis Hervé Coatalen in 1920 for Sunbeam, a marque registered by John Marston Co. Ltd of Wolverhampton. It was officially known as Sunbeam 350HP and was equipped with a modified aero engine. Considered to be the fastest car in the world, it was tested by famous aviation pioneer and pilot, Harry Hawker. In 1922, it was purchased by Sir Malcolm Campbell, who had it repainted blue and nicknamed it the “Blue Bird”. The rest, as they say is history. The Blue Bird won several land speeding records and Sir Campbell became a true motor racing legend. The car has been recently renovated and is visiting motoring festivals all over the country. It is also on permanent display in the National Motor Museum at Beaulieu, Hampshire. If you’d like to support the restoration of this fantastic machine, please see the links below. The museum needs to collect nearly £30,000 for a new gear box.
The legendary Blue Bird
Look at the engine. It used to power the fastest car on the planet.
It would be very unfair, if we missed another very old and very unique Sunbeam model that was displayed right next to the Blue Bird. The other Sunbeam known professionally as Sunbeam 16/20 Sports is even older as it has been made in 1911 and is in private hands (owned by Hicky Hickling). This 4 cylinder, 4300cc vintage monster of a racing machine can go at 100 m/h at the top of its speed and is the oldest surviving competition Sunbeam in the world. The car has won numerous racing competitions and held hill record at the Shelsley Walsh racing in 1912, the oldest motorsport events in the world running continuously from 1905 until today. Restored in mid-1990, it also travels around the UK being admired by new generations of speed racing fans.
We would love to write about each car or motorbike we have seen but it is simply impossible. Please take a look at our pictures and if we are missing any vital information about any of the models, please contact us and we will try to add them. Thank you kindly for your assistance!
Bromyard Festival of Speed:
Points of interest:
The Paddocks – located near the Conquest Theatre. Large vintage car display including the Blue Bird and Sunbeam 16/20 Sports
Prestige Car Display – located near the Old Road
Autojumble and Trade Stands – located near Sheep Close and on Pump Street
Motorcycle display – two locations, first one close to “Rose and Lion” pub near Little Hereford Pub and second on New Road.
It’s good to see you again! What a lovely time we are having recently. We don’t want to spoil the surprise but very soon, you can expect some excellent stories to be published on our blog and we are absolutely thrilled! This month has been a true ball for us and we don’t want it to end! All we can say for now is, we have been to some extraordinary places, met and talked to the hottest names on the national TV and have tons of pictures to prove it. Give us a week or two to write it all and you will not regret coming back.
Thank you for all views and click, we are always grateful for those who stop by and dedicate their spare moments to read what we have to say. We are pleased to know that you liked the first part of Queenswood Park review and today we will continue our journey through this beautiful ancient woodland. As we always say, Herefordshire is a hidden gem, there is so much to see it and almost nobody knows about it! The time has come to change it once and for all.
Queenswood Park can be enjoyed everyday and every season. Come rain or shine, there is always something interesting to do. If you are keen on jogging, yoga or cross country walking, you have several perfect trails to practice. During our visits, we had a chance to see people preparing for many national and international highly publicized events like London Marathon, Boston Marathon and even the most famous, New York Marathon. In 2012, several Olympians were seen jogging around the arboretum in their last preparations before the Olympic Games. It’s funny that local residents could give us very detailed accounts who trained where but the local press was totally oblivious of it. Maybe it is better that our athletes were left alone and could practice without anybody pestering them for pictures or interviews. Yet, we are sad that another great opportunity for promotion has been lost. Anyway, you should treat this as the highest recommendation – if Queenswood is good enough for an Olympian to train there, it is good enough for anybody. Put your trainers on and off you go for a jog!
Redwood trees can grow up to 100 meters
Solitary training is great but the park is a splendid place for group activities. We have mentioned picnic stands, family luncheons at the Queenswood Café and dog walking, but what do you say about a biology lesson outside of the classroom? Did you know that the country park is often visited by organized school trips? Believe us the kids are having so much fun playing in the forest, walking around and discovering different animal species and plants and the teachers don’t have to scream to gain their attention. We have met all age groups there: from toddlers, middle schoolers to art students that arrived to paint and take pictures. Watching one school trip was a great learning experience for us as well. A group of kids, about ten or twelve years old, was sitting around two female teachers on the grass, laughing and eating their lunch. The teachers were describing all plants that the kids could see around them. They were answering all type of questions, from ecology, recycling to modern history and gardening. It was a biology lesson but the kids were interested in very wide range of topics. If the teachers didn’t know the name of certain plants or trees, they would take a picture with their cell phones and promised to have the answers ready for the next lessons. Do we have to tell you that the kids were absolutely delighted? Some of them were writing the names down on pieces of paper, some even picked up the wild flowers to dry them as souvenirs. We are sure this is the best way to interest the younger generations in science, biology and learning in general. Of course, the kids were given home work and had to make tree and plants sketches that were later collected by the teachers, but nobody protested or argued! Instead of boring routine, there was a load of laughter, discovering and fun. Parents and school officials should take a closer look what’s locally available. Many institutions are struggling financially during the crisis and school trips and days out are the first ones to be taken out of the budget. It is important to take the kids to London or abroad to show them the world, but we seem to forget that the learning starts at home, or close to home in general. To quote one of our favourite movies – “think locally, do globally”. Hire a bus, convince parents to help during the trip and show the children a local park, museum or a listed building. Chances are the kids have never been there at all! Now, we know it’s not as easy as it seems. Everybody can be a critic. There are health and safety rules to follow, kids are misbehaving and parents don’t want to co-operate. These are very valid points but any obstacle can be overcome. Enthusiasm is contagious and the costs are small when you are discovering what’s closest to you.
Meadow with bluebells
Lets walk on the wild side
Another great picture of walking trails 🙂
Please excuse this prolonged digression, but Queenswood is a terrific learning ground and this is something we feel really strongly about. Let’s hope school directors and head teachers will come across our blog (or any other blog that promotes alternative teaching methods) and maybe they will give it a try. Nothing to loose and everything to gain!
Now, all artistic souls are asked for immediate attention. If you are enjoying nature or macro photography, you will not find a friendlier spot for your hobby. Despite large crowds visiting the country park on Saturdays and Sundays, for the majority of the week, Queenswood is still and you shall not be disturbed. Photographers are arriving usually early in the morning and stay throughout the day. Sometimes, you can see them wandering about even after the nightfall, especially if they are trying to photograph birds or animals. Artists prefer the Autumn Gardens, a real maze of sunshine and colours. Japanese maple trees with bright red leaves, blooming magnolias and cherry trees look like sparkling gems on the green background of trees and grass. It’s a real pleasure to see the painters at work. We have approached several of them and had a nice chat about acrylics, organizing art exhibitions and H-Art Festival. You don’t have to ask for permission to paint or take pictures, admission to the park and car park are free – all you need is a canvas, easel, paints, a sandwich and a bit of inspiration! Rita loves sketching in the summer house, a small wooden structure decorated with faces of nature spirits and deities. It is hidden far away from the main walking routes and offers visitors a great deal of seclusion and privacy. You can listen to music, have a dinner and feel like the Queen of the World
Queenswood has 6 main walking trails that are worth exploring. Each trail has a different difficulty, ranging from basic to the most advanced ones. Usually the routes are going in different directions but some of them can merge into mega-trails that will have you walking for hours.
You should start discovering the park with the Badger Trail. The trail encircles the main attractions and gives you easy access to Lime Avenue, Autumn Gardens, Cottrell’s Folly, Oak Avenue, The Summer Garden, Sovereign Walk and ends at the View Point. The paths are well surfaced and the journey takes about 30 to 45 minutes. The Badger Trail is perfect for small kids, lazy strollers and beginners. After mastering the basics, you can move onto something harder. The Fox Trail is 1, 5 miles long and it will take you 45 minutes to 1 hour to complete it. It has a medium difficulty and when it rains, you can expect a bit of mud under your feet. The trail looks amazing during early spring walks sometime around the beginning of April just as the bluebells are starting to bloom. It is probably our favorite route flowing through the arboretum, beech plantation, the Redwood Grove and into the ViewPoint. The longest and the hardest trail available for walkers is the Deer Trail. It is 2.5 mile long and an hour and 30 minutes are needed to finish it. Before you set out to conquer this trail make sure you are in good physical condition and you have a pair of sturdy boots on. We like this road because you have to give your very best: you climb up and down, jump above ravines and avoid slippery stones. The spectacular views are your reward – Redwood Grove, the wildest part of arboretum, beech plantation and untamed
beauty of north and south parts of Queenswood. The three remaining trails were created to showcase the beauty of the park and give the tourists a chance to enjoy it. They are: Animals of the Forest sculpture trail, Early autumn tree trail and Late autumn tree trail.
Forest deity featured in summer house
Summer house – West
Summer House – Letter H (do you know what it stands for?)
Summer spirit carved onto the summer house
Animals of the Forest sculpture trail is probably the biggest attraction of Queenswood Park. 7 wooden sculptures have been cunningly hidden among the trees and your mission is to find them. We have located them all but it felt almost like hunting for Pokemons (gonna catch them all). If you don’t like spoilers, kindly skip our trophy session below:
There is another sculpture of black bear located by the entrance to the park.It is another American black bear, but this time he is welcoming all visitors!
All sculptures have been made by local chainsaw sculptors, Steve Elsby and Harry Thomas. Steve is based in Hereford and Harry lives near the Welsh border, at the edge of the Radnor forest. Both artists have more than 20 years of experience and are award winning creators. This year Steve and Harry took part in APF 2014 – A W Jenkinson & UPM Tilhill European Chainsaw Carving Championships. Harry was ranked 6th and Steve finished at 10th position. Congratulations to both of you!
Well dear readers, there’s nothing more we can add! Please visit Queenswood Country Park and Arboretum one day and see it all for yourself. We will leave you with a beautiful photo-session taken in magnolia garden. after all, pictures are worth thousand words!
Can you believe, dear readers that it’s May already? Days are disappearing like magic and soon half of 2014 will be behind us! Don’t despair – we have many interesting stories to tell and hopefully, you will be paying us a visit loads of times before the year is done.
Recently, we have received a comment from one of our readers. The gentleman complained that since we have moved to Worcester, Herefordshire doesn’t get mentioned on the blog anymore and surely it has been forgotten.
Rita loves proving everybody wrong and today’s issue will be dedicated to the pristine shire that she called home for nearly three years. If she was to publish all materials, stories, anecdotes and pictures regarding Herefordshire she collected over that time, this blog would have to be renamed Hereford Avenue! You can be assured – nothing has been forgotten and Rita is still better informed than the Hereford Times – sorry guys, you know that it is true!
Entrance to Queenswood
A plaque with information about the park placed at the entrance
Looking through the telescope
If you haven’t been to Hereford yet, know that you are missing a lot. Herefordshire is one of the most picturesque and unspoilt counties in the United Kingdom and it’s a real shame that the local council doesn’t do anything to promote it. Yes, we have had that discussion in the past, some people are convinced that printing newsletter and updating Facebook page once a day equals to a strong and efficient marketing campaign. We hate to disappoint you folks but it’s not enough to bring tourists and businesses into Hereford. A new shopping center will not help either. But let’s leave the politics aside. Rita’s personal opinion will not change anything so we will save our breath to tell you something that truly matters. Hereford is the summertime is simply gorgeous yet there are special places where the nature is at its most beautiful all year long. The ancient woodland commonly known as The Queenswood is not only a popular relaxing/camping spot among the locals but has been voted as an important place of scenic beauty and natural significance by TripAdvisor and Natural England. Recently two new titles were added to a large collections of awards recognitions already owned by Queenswood: Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) and Local Nature Reserve (LNR).
Bluebells in bloom
A typical Queenswood trail
In short, coming to Hereford and not seeing Queenswood Country Park and Arboretum is considered to be a serious faux pas. Mind your manners kids, Herefordians are a proud folk and they hardly ever forgive those who dare to disrespects (and ignore) the natural splendor of the Shire.
The only designated country park in West Midlands consists of 123 acres of semi natural and ancient woodland, 47 acres of tree collection with over 1,200 rare and exotic trees from different parts of our globe, several forested meadows that are the home to many unique and endangered species including rare dormice, polecat and yellow-necked mice, whilst fallows and muntjac deers. Over 190 rare plants and wild flowers have been discovered in Queenswood in recent years, among them very uncommon wood vetch (Vicia sylvatica) and Paris quadrifolia (herb paris) that hasn’t been seen in this part of the UK for a long time! The Queenswood Coronation Fund and Herefordshire Council (both responsible for managing the park) recorded also about eight different species of orchids such as birds nest (neottia nidus-avis), butterfly (platanthera bifolia), early purple (orchis mascula) and common spotted (dactylorhiza fuchsii). You can also see bluebells (Hyacinthoides non-scripta), wood anemones (anemone nemorosa), foxgloves (digitalis purpurea), columbine (aquilegia vulgaris), giant bellflower (campanula latifolia) and many, many others.
Japanese Maple in the Autumn Gardens
The Arboretum or collection of rare trees that are not native to England was started in 1953 to mark the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II. Launched by Sir Richard Cotterell, Lord Lieutenant of Herefordshire and founded from public donations, the collection is considered to be one of the greatest on British soil. It consists of nearly 400 trees including Japanese maple trees, California Redwoods (that can grow up to 100 meters tall!), nearly 40 species of oak, beeches and alders. In 1981, The Arboretum received a gold medal from International Dendrology Society in recognition of the quality and for the number of trees. Each tree in the collection has its own identification card and unique catalog number (. The card is usually located near the tree and contains basic information about the species: country of origin, Latin name, name of tree sponsor and date when it was added to the collection. Some trees have a special Tree Register number included on the card. They are known as “Champion Trees” and are the finest (and the biggest) examples of their own kind that can be found in the UK and Ireland. There are 10 Champion Trees in Queenswood and you can visit them all by following the Champion Tree Trail:
Queenswood offers everything you can dream of and it is not just a slogan to sell admission tickets. The entry is free of charge and you don’t have to pay a dime for a spacious parking. There are seven walking and trekking trails of varying difficulties from basic ones that can be completed under one hour to long, complicated routes that take nearly 4 hours to finish. Visitors have access to a picnic area with several barbeque designated places, small family run cafe (the food is delicious and very cheap!), country store that sells ice-creams and drinks, tourist information center, playground area for kids and even a small book store!You can bring your dogs with you under condition that they are well behaved.
Darrell Dean Magnolia from USA
Cherry Shogetsu from Japan
Small brook flowing through the park
Isn’t it a gorgeous place to be? Please come back tomorrow as we are going to show you our favorite trail and an art gallery in the middle of forest!
Welcome again dear readers! It’s almost the middle of the month and we are getting really excited here! The 23rd of November is getting closer and if you do not know what we are talking about, you probably have been living under the rock!
50 years celebrations do not happen every day, but when they do, they are usually remembered for a very long time. And when it was announced that Doctor Who 50 years celebration will be held in Hereford, Rita and Mal started celebrating straight away!
Official poster for Doctor Who 50 year celebration in Hereford
All reincarnations of the Doctor – special poster promoting a special anniversary episode entitled “The Day of the Doctor”
Compared to other Doctor Who events held throughout the country, the Hereford one was probably very small and rather local. We didn’t have professional actors or special guests paying us a visit, nobody from the cast or crew arrived to meet the fans, there was no screening of the anniversary trailer either, but we have to say, we were absolutely blown away by how well everything was organized. The whole celebration was prepared by just a small group of Doctor Who series enthusiasts and it was a hit. No, we are not kidding you: at least thousand visitors arrived to Shire Hall on October 19th to meet the Doctor, his companions and enemies.
Time machine in front of Shire Hall – it’s easy to test if you are a true Time Lord!
Dalek is ready to exterminate. Run for your life!
The Shire Hall located on Union Street in the heart of the city is a perfect spot for Doctor Who gathering. The building has been designed by Sir Robert Smirke, famous architect responsible for construction of Eastnor Castle, The British Museum and The Royal Opera House in London among many others. Shire Hall was built between 1816 and 1819 and stands on the site of a medieval gaol (city jail). This Greek-revival building is said to be one of the most haunted houses in the Marches, with ghosts of hanged criminals, former judges and members of the public roaming its vast corridors at all times. The Hall still serves as a court house and the workers have seen a lot of paranormal activity even during the daylight! We kid you not – this place is so spooky that when you walk through the door, you almost feel like entering The Twilight Zone. Also, the DJ hired to entertain the crowd had a truly wicked sense of humor: he was welcoming guests by playing short clips of music from well known horror movies or TV series. Our friends arrived to the main theme from “The X-Files”, “Psycho” or “Rocky Horror Picture Show” while we were greeted by popular tune from “The Ghost Busters”. “Who you gonna call?… Good question, Ghost Busters or Doctor Who?
Dalek guarding the entrance to the Shire Hall. It doesn’t matter if you have a ticket or not. All shall be exterminated!
Golden Tardis on bunting decorating the main hall
An image of Super Dalek on decorative bunting in the main corridor of Shire Hall
Sadly, The Ghost Busters services were not really needed as we haven’t seen any ghosts or spirits. It was more of a case for Moulder and Scully or at least for Man in Black – the whole convention was raided by Aliens ! Some Extraterrestrials were friendly, some offered us strange looking refreshments, others were concerned about our health or moved swiftly behind our backs with suspicious intentions. One particularly nasty Space Traveler even attempted to strangle Rita! The vast majority of Outlanders however were not interested in any kind of close encounter with humans. All they wanted was to exterminate us and conquer our home planet. Luckily we had few Time Lords with us and nobody was harmed – but it was close! Never, ever trust a cyborg or a moving statue, we tell ya!
Rita was brave enough to have a picture taken with an empty Dalek shell. Nobody in their right mind would ever approach the real Dalek. It’s a big no-no and don’t ever even think about it!
Artist and sculptor Raymond Noakes as the Terror in silver – The Cyberman
Once we got rid of the menacing strangers, we were free to walk around and take part in offered attractions. We had a meet-and greet with an (empty) Dalek shell, entered the Tardis and we posed for a commemorative photo taken by professional photographer Becca Wilkin. We have known Becca for years and had seen her in action many times so it was not a surprise for us that we had to queue for almost half an hour to say hello. Oh well, if you are friends with a photographer with skills out of this world, you have to suffer a bit. We couldn’t help ourselves and we returned the favor by taking picture of Becca hard at work at her laptop editing images. Standing in line at popular event can be quite fun. We chatted to a lovely couple who traveled nearly for three hours just to take part in 50 years celebration and several kids entertained us with short stories about the Doctor that they wrote themselves. If the series continue for another decade, we are sure they could become official script writers! One of the stories consisted of a living portrait, an aquatic monster, two lawyers from Exeter and the fictional King of England, Henry the IX. Brilliant.
Official event photographer Becca Wilkin editing images for Doctor who fans.
Rita and the Tardis – a new companion for the Doctor?
The highlight of the event was meeting with Mike Collins, the artist and writer for official Doctor Who magazine. Mr Collins started his carrier in early 1980’s by working for Marvel Comics. He was the penciller and cover designer for Spider-Man, Transformers and Zoids. He was also a frequent contributor to Judge Dread, Rogue Trooper and popular weekly comic 2000 AD. A decade later, his talent was appreciated by Americans companies and Mike Collins made his debut behind the Big Pond by joining DC Comics. He has worked on every important series in the business: Superman, Wonder Woman, Batman, The Justice League, Teen Titans and many others. Outside of comics, his artworks have been used in Star Trek magazines, Harry Potter collectible cards and War Hammer 40 000 movie. Mr Collins joined Doctor Who magazine in 2006 and since then, he became one of the most important artists associated with the title.
Mike Collins meeting the fans
A quick sketch of the 11th Doctor for a young visitor. Can you believe, he only needed 4 minutes to draw this?
Hand drawn master copy of “The only good Dalek” – fantastic work!
Meeting such well established author can be an intimidating adventure, but Mr Colllins was very kind and approachable. He kindly signed autographs, answered lots of questions and even drew several caricatures of cosplayers and visitors. Rita had a long discussion with him about comic market in the UK, new media, marketing and events management. As we found out, he was aware of our blog! Before coming to Hereford, he did a little research on the Internet and came across our review of Malta Comicon and Herefordian Arts and Crafts market. We also have several common friends on Facebook (including a ridiculously talented Worcester based comic artist Steve Pugh) so the conversation quickly turned into a very personal chat. Mr Collins signed Doctor Who print for Helen Stringer, a British writer living in America and good friends of ours (from author to an author, as he described it) and in the end allowed us to take few photographs of hand drawn master copy of his book “The only good Dalek”. Thank you Mike! You are truly wonderful and if you are reading this know, that the signed print is on its way to the old good USA!
Mike Collins print kindly presented to our friend Helen Stringer
And mike’s signature on the back. Thank you!
While speaking to Mike Collins, we were told about a small display of rare Doctor Who memorabilia located somewhere in the building. The display was nowhere to be found in the main hall so our next mission was to locate the exhibition and investigate if there was something interesting to see. The task was not really hard to complete as the display was located in one of the back corridors but many people simply missed it not knowing they were allowed to enter. The rare collection consisted of books, audio dramas and mini novels released at the beginning of 70’s and 80’s. We have also seen Doctor Who Annuals, first copies of official Doctor Who magazines and hand made posters used to advertise the first series in 1963. The items most intriguing to us were the four little metallic figurines used in the production of series Four, Five and Seven: Dalek, Super Dalek, Cyberman and Davros sitting inside the Dalek shell. All figurines were the originals used by the TV crew and only several of them have been made. They were so expensive, they had to be kept in a special glass case borrowed from West Mercia Police. The owner laughed we wouldn’t be able to open it even if we used a sonic screwdriver!
Doctor Who Annuals on the display
and The Super Dalek figurine as well
We love talking to artists and looking at gadgets and memorabilia connected to the series, but the best thing about the Doctor Who convention is always the cosplay! Kids and adults prepared some incredibly realistic costumes and a group photographic session was so much fun. There was at least 9 Doctors (including Second, Fourth, Fifth, Tenth and Eleventh), two Daleks, one Davros, several Venetian Vampires, Clockwork Droids (Men and Women), two Weeping Angels and one lovely Sister of Plenitude who asked about our well-being! We haven’t seen all cosplayers as we arrived in the afternoon, but we were told there was one lady dressed as Jenny (Doctor’s daughter), two or three companions (including Rose Tyler the companion of the Tenth Doctor) and Susan Foreman – Doctor’s granddaughter.
Rita took several pictures of the whole group posing near the Tardis. Would you believe the whole photo-session took more than two hours? Time sure flies when you are having fun!
Clockwork Woman posing for a picture near the Tardis
Kindra Jones as a Sister of Plentitude
Weeping Angel covers her face and the Eleventh Doctor
And a Group picture with a fan
Doctor Who 50 years celebration in Hereford was a huge success. The food and drinks prepared by Hereford Sixth Form College and Whitecross High School students were excellent, the guests were interesting and the company – the best in the universe. What else would we want? The only complain we have is that such celebration do not happen each year and we will have to wait another half a century for a party like that!
Luckily, the birthday extravaganza is not over yet. We still have 6 days left to the premiere of the 50th anniversary special episode of Doctor Who, entitled simply “The Day of the Doctor”. It will be broadcasted on BBC One on 23 November 2013 in both 2D and 3D. Also, make sure you do not miss the web mini-episode “The Night of the Doctor” that shows the last moments of The Eight Doctor (portrayed by Paul McGann) and his regeneration into the War Doctor.
Welcome back to the last part of Hereford Art Festival 2013 reviews! We had such a great time writing about the artists that presented their works at Herefordshire Open Exhibition, and we hope that you will enjoy our selection.
If you have missed our previous entries, do not despair. We have them all archived properly and links are posted below for your convenience. Just a reminder – The Call of the Wild was dedicated to Love Zimbabwe and the art of Karl Hamilton -Cox. Part two took us to back alleyways where we had a chance to discover places that are normally closed for the public: The secret gardens of Apple Store Gallery and Fired Earth in-store exposition.
h.Art Herefordshire Open Exhibition leaflet – front
h.Art Herefordshire Open Exhibition leaflet – back
Today’s entry is a comeback to the mainstream. Herefordshire Open Gallery and Herefordshire Young Open Exhibition (which we sadly had to miss this year) are the two main events for H.Art Festival. Organized in the same heart of Hereford City, both of them draw huge crowds of visitors on their opening nights and remain popular through out their duration. We concentrated on Herefordshire Open Exhibition as it offered the best selection for our needs: younger artists were exhibiting next to well established local creators and international stars.
We tried to present sculptors, painters, mixed media artists and abstract painters – each reader can find something of interest for themselves.
Some artists had a chance to show their works twice: at the Herefordshire Open Exhibition and again at their own studios or homes (usually called venues). The full list of all venues opened during h.Art festival 2013 can be found in PDF folder below. Each place has a link to the official site, short description and one selected work that represents a solo artist or a group:
Enjoy our picks and do not forget to write to us to tell us what do you think!
You can reach us at rdabrowicz”yahoo.com. No spam please and thank you!
And now, Ladies and Gents, we are proud to present Vanadian Avenue Guide to the best art and artists of h.Art 2013! Enjoy!!
You know what they say – size matters, especially in art. Julian Meredith is one of those artists, who can steal an entire exhibition with just a single piece of his work, and he did exactly that at Herefordshire Open Exhibition. Julian knows how to work with big formats – sometimes hundreds of feet long and the final effects are simply breathtaking. Born in 1952, Mr Meredith has a long and very successful career in arts: he received at least 30 prestigious awards, held multiple solo exhibitions and participated in group art displays on several continents. His works can be found in almost all important museums and private galleries in the UK and abroad.
Julian is fascinated by history, fossils, stones and natural prints of animals that inhabited the Earth million of years ago. His artworks feature mostly fish (eels, whales, tunas), but also birds, otters, deers and insects. He portrays an unique relationship between species and their environments. His favorite medium are wood cut prints colored by hand with oil and ink. Mr Meredith loves working outside of his studio as well: he is known to create enormous artwork in sand, snow or grass. We were amazed how detailed his artworks are. The picture you can seen below shows “Bluefin (Tuna)” one of his delicate prints made on rice paper. Every line, every bone or scale is clearly visible. The viewer has a feeling like his is watching the fish through the lens of a microscope – we are full of awe as we didn’t know such surgical precision in printmaking is even possible!
Mr Meredith’s daughter commented her father’s work with those excellent words: “My father lives in a world where wood becomes water which flows into fish which fall eaten to the bone crushed by stone into lime that lives as a whale formed in a field in a sea full of grass where water once ran.” We think no other comment is truly necessary.
Bluefin (Tuna), wood cut print by Julian Meredith was priced at £6,000 (framed) and £5,00 (unframed)
If you haven’t heard about porcelain paper-clay, don’t you worry, you are not the only one! Rita and Mal has covered hundreds of art exhibitions and spoke to many artists, but we have never came across such medium in our art related journeys before. Wikipedia to the rescue – by definition, paper clay is any clay body to which processed cellulose fiber (paper being the most common) has been added. Wendy Houghton uses porcelain paper clay to make the most delicate and elaborate ceramics sculptures we had a chance to see this year.
It takes years of practice and a lot of skills to use paper-clay. There is no single, universal recipe how to prepare this medium. Each artist composes his or her own mixture and works with it. If you’d like to give it a go, do not pester others to ask how they did it. The best way is to try it yourself, by trial and error. Porcelain paper-clay art is not for people who give up easily. Wendy has been perfecting her art for nearly 30 years but the works are worth all the pain, sweat and tears. Mrs Houghton says she is fascinated by the fragility, delicateness and vulnerability of the surrounding world and tries to add those qualities to her sculptures. One artwork named “Nest I” has been voted as one of the most popular pieces of art at Herefordshire Open Exhibition by the visiting public – and rightly so!
Nest I by Wendy Houghton (on the left) with another artwork in the background – priced at £450
Will Carr is one of the youngest abstract and figurative sculpture makers from Herefordshire. He was raised on a farm and since the early age, was drawn to technical and practical skills. He taught himself to weld old machinery parts and by accident discovered his passion for creating and sculpting. Will has extraordinarily imagination that allows him to picture the final product before the work begins. He doesn’t need to sketch the concept or divide his time on separate parts. His unusual vision and skills allow him to easily finish an entire sculpture in one take – something very rare for an artist that is at the beginning of his artistic path.
2013 proved to be an excellent year for Mr Carr. He has exhibited his works all over the county and won the prestigious Hereford Young Artist Bursary Award. Please keep your eyes open for Will – we will hear a lot about him in the nearest future!
Turkey Tail Fungus by Will Carr – wood and steel sculpture
H-art festival has always been a very important event for us. We love discovering new trends, meeting talented people and looking at the beautiful pieces of arts. This year’s edition is double special as we not only had a chance to learn from the artists themselves by watching them at work, but also because we discovered Helen Crawford. Helen, a well established artist in Herefordshire, lives in small village of Bromesberrow near Ledbury. She specializes in embroidery, textiles and mixed media creating artworks so unique that they can only be called a true masterpieces. We know, we shouldn’t have our favorites, but Helen’s artworks are mesmerizing. Talking to the curators of Herefordshire Open Exhibitions, we were told that Helen has been taking part in H-art for about six years now and each year her artworks are well received by the critics and public. Rita thinks that last year, she must have been completely blind as she cannot find any other rational explanation how she managed to miss Mrs Crawford’s artworks. Helen holds a degree in Stitched Textiles from Gloucester College of Art and Technology and completed two City and Guilds Courses in Embroidery (Part 1 and Part 2). She is inspired by woodlands and wild landscapes surrounding Malvern Hills, music and poetry.
As a member of Rubicon artist group , this is how she describes her own works: “My silk paper seascapes and landscapes are created from hand dyed silk fibers, which give me a rich palette for washes of color. Composition and content are integrated during the construction and subsequent enrichment of the surface with machine stitch and mixed media”.
Helen’s artworks were displayed in Venue 75 along with works of Gilbert and Rebecca Crawford, Rachel Padley and Paul Shepherd. We are not sure if Helen is related to Gilbert and Rebecca, but if she is, then the artistic talent runs in the entire Crawford family!
If you’d like to see Gilbert’s furniture and Rebecca’s hand made jewellery and artworks, please click on the links below:
What can happen if you take a French artist, move her to British country side, give her “The Little Prince” by Antoine de Saint Exupéry’ and a lot of free time? The answer to this question is surprisingly easy: she will start painting! Avon has been born and raised in Provence and moved to Herefordshire over 20 years ago. She still misses the sunshine, flowers and cicadas of France but is mesmerized by black and white village trail, picturesque river Wye and the lovely landscape.
We admire Véronique for her well – defined style and for not being afraid to experiment. Her works are very colorful and beautifully designed – each painting has many layers, specific mood and a leading theme. Did we mentioned that she gives her paintings a long titles? They are in fact haikus – our favourite is “Angels of the past, Of far away memories, Gardeners of the souls…” which you can see below on a picture. Outside of painting, Mrs Avon is interested in medieval illustrations, stained glass window art and making prints and hand made cards.
Véronique Avon’s fantastic work entitled “Angels of the past, Of far away moments, Gardeners of the souls…” – oil on canvas
Anita Louise Davies is an abstract artist specializing in geometric and expressionist forms. There are not many artists out there who create such specific artworks and we have to admit, Mrs Davies is doing an excellent job. Her work entitled “Collateral Damage: On Face of it” has been made with aid cotton bandage, painted cards and safety pins and gained a lot of attention from the public. Anita exhibited two works at Herefordshire Open Exhibition and participated in collective display at The Cider House, Lodge Farm Barns in Canon Pyon with Miranda Goudge, Caroline Holt-Wilson, Liz Morison and Dani Sangway (Venue number 9 as Cider House Artists).
Collateral Damage: On the face of it by Anita Louise Davies. Cotton bandage, acrylic paint – not for sale
Professional picture taken by the artist. There are 16 small canvases on board
Anita took several detailed pictures for her blog and they can be seen here:
There are more things in heaven and earth than are dreamt of in your philosophy – said Hamlet to Horatio. Yes there are things in this world of art that Rita and Mal hasn’t heard of yet. Well, we are learning fast! Another surprise after porcelain paper-clay, is the kinetic art. Some of you might be really surprised that we just recently learned of its existence, especially when first kinetic sculptures were produced at the beginning of 20th century. However, please note that we never studied art and everything we know comes from self studies and discoveries, exactly like this one. When we come across something new, we tend to research the topic, until we have a good understanding of it.
Simon Meiklejohn is a very well known kinetic sculptor living and creating in Hereford. He studied fine art sculpture at Teesside University in Middlesbrough, UK and in Cleveland, USA. He is also a certified mechanical engineer on both sides of the Big Pond. His works combine the best of both worlds: the precision of engineering and the beauty of art. His skills are unquestionable and Simon’s sculptures can be seen in many prestigious museums and galleries including Riverside Museum in Glasgow, the Royal Institute of Art in London, The Sea Henge exhibition in Kings Lynn, The Kelvingrove Museum & Art gallery in Glasgow.
Steel kinetic sculpture “Fleeting moment” by Simon Meiklejohn in motion
For the H.Art, Simon contributed several sculptures: three were displayed at Herefordshire Open Exhibitions and others were displayed at Venues 65 and 113.
John Meiklejohn sculpture entitled “I”ll give you all you ever wanted (But if you want too much, I might go off you a bit)”
Simon Meiklejohn sculpture entitled “Of my own making”
As last year, we would like to award some artists with Honorable mentions on our blog. We have chosen 4 creators that deserve to be watch closely. We loved their artwork and if our intuition is correct, they going to be huge in the next few years.
Andrea McLean was born in 1968 in Denbighshire, Wales. She studied at Falmouth School of Art, the Slade School of Art and the British School at Rome on an Abbey Scholarship in Painting. Her painting “A Contemporary Mappa Mundi’ is on display at the British Library as part of their permanent collection and can be found near the entrance to the map room. Andrea has been voted as a favorite painter by BBC website viewers for their art project “Your Paintings”. She lives and works in Ledbury. For H.art Herefordshire Open Exhibition she donated “Ledbury Dreamscape”.
Andrea McLean’s Ledbury Dreamscape, oil on canvas
Closer look at the Ledbury Dreamscape by Andrea McLean
Jeremy Stiff is living in the wilds of the Black Mountains, in South Wales, with his wife Menna Angharad a painter and a daughter. They are in charge of a large animal farm, an orchard and a bit of private forest. Outside of taking care of animals and the nature, Jeremy is also an accomplished sculptor with many solo and group exhibition to his name in the UK and abroad. Mr Stiff holds HND (Higher National Diploma) in Figurative Sculpture and MA degree in Fine Arts from Cardiff Metropolitan University. At Herefordshire Open Exhibition, Jeremy displayed one of his newest sculptures entitled “Essentials”
Plaster sculpture Essentials by Jeremy Stiff being displayed at HOE
Xaviere Hughes completed his BA Honours Degree in Fine Art from Edinburgh College of Art, and an MA in Art & Design from Gray’s School of Art before studying for a Post Graduate Certificate of Education with the university of Wales and working in Arts Education. As a teacher at Herefordshire College of Arts, he mentored many young students who achieved national and international fame. In his own art, Xaviere concentrates on mixed media that mixes real life domesticity with careful composition and articulations of detail and colour.
In recent interview, Xaviere described his art with those words: “I am concerned with the choices and decisions that a person has the opportunity to make within their lifetime. I am interested in the way in which an ever changing and disposable society such as ours, can influence the hopes, dreams and aspirations of a generation. I am attempting to capture an essence of ‘lifestyle’ media bombardment by manipulating messages and imagery that have been conveyed both through history and via the mass media and mass consumerism. Take it or leave it…the choice is yours.”
Xaviere Hughs political incorrect art entitled “Mother Fucker”, mixed media on paper
Kate Morgan-Clare mixed media sculpture was Rita’s favorite piece of art at the Herefordshire Open Exhibition. Entitled “The Granny chair”, it was made of delicate paper, beautifully colored and designed by the artist. Kate lives in The Welsh Marches and currently is studying for Fine Art Honours Degree at Hereford College of Arts. She has been painting for many years and her works has been exhibited numerous times. She is concerned with human condition, identity and a sense of place and memory. Her best known work is a series of mixed media drawings dedicated to children living in the UK during the WWII. Kate spent a lot of time investigating clothes, toys, old photographs and histories trying to create works imitating real life during difficult time of loss and uncertainty.
Kate Morgan-Clare’s Granny chair – mixed media art. Sadly, not for sale.
Wow! A real art overload. We could write on and on and on, and yet we would not be able to describe all the wonderful artworks and talented people who made them. If you have a bit of time, please visit Hereford Library on Broad street, opposite the Cathedral. The art gallery is located on second floor, just upstairs from the library. Herefordshire Open Exhibition can be seen till the end of October. The Gallery is open 5 days a week (except for Mondays and Sundays) between 9 am and 19:00 pm and admission is free.
You can contact the Library by telephone at 01432 383600 or by email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Our next blog will be published on Halloween and it going to be dedicated to Doctor Who, so please make sure you stop by to read it!
You know you want to!
We are really sorry that you had to wait so long for another part of the H-art review. Rita had a bit of health issues and needed to undergo a thyroid operation, but now she is feeling fine and is back at work! You can expect a lot of blogging in the next few weeks as Rita is having a lots of great ideas and cannot wait till she shares them with you all!
For the second part, we decided to do something completely different. First of all, we went off the beaten track and skipped the grand openings that we attended last year. We love socializing with artists and people but since we have seen it all just 12 months ago, a small change was very much needed. It was decided that we should skip the bigger events and concentrate on the smaller venues that are likely to be missed by general public. The experiment was a huge success in our opinions – not only we could spend a lot of time looking at the artworks without being pushed around by the crowd, but we had the time to speak to the artists and owners of art galleries. Of course, do not misunderstand what we just written – while visiting the H-Art venues we were never alone. H-art is a very popular festival with hundreds of visitors and passer by’s, but we had the luxury of photographing artworks without having to watch for other peoples elbows being stuck in our lenses or being stamped nearly to death by art enthusiasts. Skipping the night openings and exhibitions previews can be a fun experience too. You might not be able to grab a free drink, but you can contemplate and enjoy the art in silence as long as you please.
Official Create Herefordshire logo
Smaller venues do not usually organize any openings but they offer you a bit of privacy and the feeling is really important to us. You can walk around the venue, stick your nose into every hole and explore freely. For example, we have noticed that some venues have additional visiting rooms that normally are closed to visitors as they are either part of private workshops or stores. In normal circumstances, walking into those parts of the artist’s house or gallery equals to trespassing. During art festivals, artists not only open their own houses for the public, but they will happily give you a tour of their garden or show you an old barn that has been turned into painting atelier or a photography studio. Art galleries are acting in similar fashion. Backrooms and offices are normally inaccessible, but if you pay them a visit after the opening madness has ended, you will find out that the extra rooms are being open and serve as additional exhibition space.
We have chosen two smaller galleries in the Hereford City Center especially for this review: Apple Store Gallery on Bridge Street and Fire Earth Store on King Street. We would like to thank the owners for showing us around their premises and introducing to three wonderful artists. It was a real pleasure to speak to them and learn more about their work.
APPLE TREE GALLERY
Official Apple Store Gallery Logo
Apple Tree Gallery has been founded in 2005 by husband and wife team, David Laws and Marion Campbell, in an Arts & Crafts apple store in Brockhampton, Herefordshire. They moved to Bridge Street offices in 2010 and since then, they became a very important spot on Hereford art map. David and Marion have nearly 30 years of experience in art management and work very closely with numerous Herefordian artists, painters, jewellery makers and arts and crafts people. If you are new to the area and you’d like to talk to somebody who knows what is going on in the county, David and Marion are your best bet. We have met them for the first time in 2011, and they are wonderfully well informed couple, always ready to help and direct the lost souls in the right direction. Apple Tree Gallery is open all year long and organizes literally hundreds of events. Every time we walk into the art gallery, there is something happening there. The place is so popular, that the gallery is booked solid till the end of 2014! David and Marion will speak to new artists and if you’d like to exhibit your works at Apple Tree, all you have to do is to contact them and explain what you do.
Apple Tree Gallery offers additional services as well: you can buy art materials, frame your artwork and learn how to paint. During the H.Art festival, the gallery was a sponsor of Herefordshire Young Open exhibition and End of Year show for the BA Fine Art Degree at Hereford College of Arts.
Address: 3 Bridge Street, HR4 9DF Hereford, Herefordshire
(Tuesdays to Fridays from 09:30 am to 16:30 pm and Saturdays from 10:00 am to 13:00 pm) Telephone: 01432 378436 Email address: email@example.com
Apple Store Gallery banner
We have visited Apple Tree Gallery on Saturday 7th of September to see what David and Marion have prepared especially for the H.Art Festival. The first thing we noticed was that the gallery have been redecorated: some cabinets were removed to make more space for exhibition stalls and easels. A small corridor leading to the back of the building was also decorated with paintings and portraits and the garden was now opened for the visitors. It was actually the first time, we could enter the garden and take look around. It is beautifully designed and looks like a real secret garden should. Among wild flowers and narrow alleyways, we have discovered a white tent containing beautiful artwork by two artists: sculptor Sally Grant and painter Roland Moore.
SALLY GRANT – Sculptures with a soul
Sally Grant is an internationally renowned artist with many years of working and exhibiting experience. She has been born in Aberdeen in 1973 and became interested in painting and sculpting at a very young age. She has studied Visual Arts at Cheltenham and holds MA Degree in Arts Management from Cambridge.
Sally Grant sculpture in the Apple Store Gallery garden
Sally Grant sculpture entitled “Remembering Head”
What we truly love about Sally’s art is her uniqueness – her style cannot be mistaken with anything or anybody else. All you need to do is to take a one, quick look at her works to be sure it is her. Rita has been interested in abstract art for many years now and she is always happy to discover a new abstract artist living and creating in Hereford. Sally’s sculptures have semi abstract feel to them, but they are not overly abstract or too hard to understand at the same time.
Ronald Moore is one of the best known artists working at the boarder of Herefordshire and the Wales. His skills are almost legendary. Mr Moore has a long and very successful career: he is not only a renowned painter that exhibited his works all over the world (Asia, USA, Japan and majority of Europe), participated in numerous solo and group exhibitions, but he is also a famous art historian and art teacher at several universities and colleges in the UK. The most fascinating thing about Ronald Moore is that he has spent 35 years working as a painting conservator for museums and galleries, English Heritage, the army and the church and has handled paintings by Caravaggio, Turner, Constable, Rembrandt, Canaletto and many other major names.
Beautiful landscape by Ronald Moore
Ronald Moore artwork displayed in Apple Store Gallery
Mr Moore has several degrees to his name including:
1961-66 Birmingham and Oxford Colleges of Art.
1975 BA (Hons) History of Art at London University
1970’s Research in the psychology of perception with reference to early 20th century non objective painting.
In 2013, he has exhibited in Australia and New York and his paintings can be found in private and public art collections in New York and New South Wales. He is also represented by British Royal Collection as well.
We have left Apple Tree Gallery thinking that we would not be able to find another artist that could show us something as beautiful as Sally’s sculptures or so skillfully presented as the paintings made by Mr Moore. As usual, we were mistaken! Our next stop was FIRED EARTH, a store that specializes in hand made floor and wall tiles, paint, wallpaper, bathrooms, kitchen furniture, handwoven rugs and wood flooring. Wait a minute, you may think. Why after leaving an art gallery, suddenly we decided to go to a tiles store? Well, we didn’t go there to choose our next bathroom tiles, but to see a small exhibition by ceramic artist Kate Davson. The cool thing about H.Art festival is the whole town is involved in it. You do not have to be an owner of an art gallery to participate. Many stores, cafeterias and coffee houses take part by allowing artists to put their works on displays in main windows or inside the shops. Kate being a ceramic artist chose Fired Earth as the best place to showcase her ceramic wonders.
Fired Earth logo and design catalog
FIRED EARTH is located on 11 King Street Hereford, Herefordshire, HR4 9BW Telephone: 01432 277000 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Opening hours: Mon – Sat 9.30 – 5.30 Website:http://www.firedearth.com
KATE DAWSON – decorative & sculptural Raku
Kate Dawson made her official debut at H.Art 2013 with a group of other artists known as The Bredwardine Bunch (Kim Davis, Jackie Edwards, Rob Grunsell , Sam Hughes, Kate Pritchard and Jacky Thomas). The Bredwardine Bunch were located at Bredwardine Village Hall in small village of Bredwardine, nearly 13 miles away from Hereford (aka Venue 101). Kate’s ceramics however were displayed in several other places, one of them being Fired Earth where we had a chance to see them.
Kate Dawson exhibition in Fired Earth store
Raku pottery by Kate Dawson – Rita’s favorite piece of art this year!
Kate has spent many years exploring different mediums (including painting, jewellery making, textiles, Chinese brush painting and others) before she finally stumbled into ceramics in 2002. Since then she acquired City and Guilds degree in 3D Design and Ceramics and opened her own ceramic studio with huge success. She specializes in raku – type of Japanese pottery that is traditionally used in Chanoyu – the tea ceremony. Kate and her husband live very close to the Welsh boarder and work together from their studio overlooking the Wye Valley.
Since moving to Herefordshire in 2006, Kate has become a very active member of the artistic community. She is one of the senior members of Herefordshire Guild of Master Craftsmen and runs Hereford Life Drawing Group. She is also the main organizer of popular Portrait in Clay and Life in Clay workshops. If you are interested in purchasing one of her ceramics or taking a part in her classes, please contact Kate and don’t forget to mention our blog!
We hope you have enjoyed this little trip through the back streets of H.Art festival. Please return shortly as we are going back to the mainstream! The third and the last part of our review will introduce you to young and very creative Herefordian art wolves that are planning to take up the art world by storm!