Valerie Armstrong: ART IN THE TIME OF COVID 19

Notes from the studio from Artworks’ Valerie Armstrong:

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DISCONNECTION, acrylic on canvas, 70 cm x 100 cm

It is 12th May 2020. We have now been in home lockdown for nearly two months. I am over 70 years old and though normally healthy, I do suffer from very nasty bouts of bronchitis, so I know I must do everything I can to avoid contracting this destructive disease.

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THE SILENT VISITOR (detail), acrylic on canvas, 60 cm x 30 cm

I now live alone, but despite that I am one of the lucky ones: I have a beautiful garden and studio at home. The weather has been sparkling and so far, I have painted my way through the solitude. During this time my paintings have changed, they have become larger, freer and bolder as I think to myself:

I have nothing to lose, now is the time to express all that I am feeling: the sadness, the fear, the loneliness, the anger, the calm.

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THE MEMORY TREE, acrylic on cradled board, 45 cm x 45 cm

I have painted my Covid ‘monster’: my garden which calms and soothes; my tree of memories and my feelings of fear and confusion regarding the present situation.

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THE WILD GARDEN OF CHILDHOOD, acrylic on canvas, 70 cm x 100 cm

It is an intense time in my studio. These are the paintings I have completed during the past two months.

Valerie Armstrong

www.valeriearmstrong.com

Alison Jones: Tulipmania

A spring ‘garden note’ sent in from Alison Jones, award-winning botanical artist and member of Artworks:

Having been inspired by the colours and drama of parrot tulips growing in my garden, I realised I had a fascination for these varieties not just because of their freakish beauty but because of their unique history: the meteoric rise in value during the 16th and 17th century in the Netherlands meant that the parrot tulips shown here were very often used as currency.

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Parrot Tulips, Tulipa Estella Rijnveld, growing in Alison Jones’ garden

Fortunes were made and lost with peoples’ livelihoods at stake. Little did the Dutch in those days know that it was a virus transmitted by the aphid which was responsible for the extraordinary shapes and colour patterns.

So even a virus carrying parasite can cause the creation of amazing new varieties of the tulip.

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Purple Parrot Tulips

Purple Parrot Tulips by Alison Jones, 40cm x 35cm, watercolour on paper.

Alison Jones is also a founder member of the Iceni Botanical Artists.

HAPPY NEW YEAR! Artworks invite professional artists living & working in East Anglia to exhibit with Artworks in 2020

HAPPY NEW YEAR to all our followers & supporters!

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Winter Sun II, by Janet French

It is 2020 and another Artworks exhibition is already on the horizon!

ARTWORKS invite professional artists living and working in East Anglia to exhibit in September 2020. The exhibition dates in 2020 are Saturday 26th September to Sunday 11th October 2020.

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Smoke Fired Seed, by Sue Caddy

We invite professional artists who are established in their art practice, showing new work that will be engaging and contemporary to new audiences.

We are especially keen for contemporary fine artists and sculptors working in bronze, ceramic, stone, metal or contemporary mixed media to apply this year, to complement our collective of painters & printmakers (sculptors are under represented in our group). However, all contemporary artists are encouraged to apply, as we enjoy seeing the contemporary art of East Anglia (Norfolk, Suffolk, Essex & Cambridgeshire).

Register your interest now by going to: www.artworkseast.com/apply-membership.

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Fleet, by Colin Slee

ARTWORKS’ history: Artworks has been established for twenty years with an enviable reputation for high quality & professionalism in our annual exhibition, appreciated by 1000s of art lovers and collectors who return year after year. With a focus on excellent administration in exhibition planning, presentation and sales of art, we are recognised as one of East Anglia’s leading art exhibitions.

There is still time to apply – the closing date for the return of application forms is 31st January 2020, with a portfolio selection day in mid February. Register your interest now by going to: www.artworkseast.com/apply-membership