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  • Writer's picturePeacock Arts HQ

Venue #10 Corsham Almshouses

From Sanders Painting & Sculpture, you can continue your stroll around Corsham with a short walk down Pickwick Road to the top of Pound Pill. On the corner at the top of hill, opposite the gates to Corsham Court, you will find the Corsham Almshouses and Schoolroom. We are delighted to be able to use this incredibly well preserved seventeenth century building again in 2019.

This year you will find 10 of our fabulous artists exhibiting at the Almshouses, including painters, ceramicists, jewellers, glass artists and stone sculptures. Get comfy, and read on…

After studying at Bath Academy of Art in Corsham, Kate worked for many years as an illustrator of children’s books with a brief spell working as an architectural illustrator. She now paints her own watercolours which strongly show the influence of those years, “populating well known, recognisable scenes, with little anthropomorphic characters”.

Kate’s day starts with a short walk to her ‘drawing room’ where she spends the day, “working on a painting of my own design – finding the photographic reference I need for the location, drawing the basic bones of the picture, creating the characters and ‘storyline’ for the piece and sketching them in – or maybe it is already drawn on watercolour paper and I am painting away, listening to Radio 4…”

Words significantly influence Kate’s work – “almost all of my paintings have something wordy about them that has brought about their being.  It might be the actual title I give the painting,  or the phrase, poem, or single word that brought an image to mind, planted the seed which grew into the painting.  All my work is very illustrative”.

This is Kate’s second time exhibiting at the Peacock Arts Trail and she enjoys, “meeting the people who love art and sharing your love of it with them”.

From her small workshop at home – or sometimes just her kitchen table! – Maggie creates beautiful jewellery using sterling silver and silver clay. Combining these raw materials with pearls and semi precious stones, she produces a simple range of  elegant affordable jewellery.

Philippa makes sculptural forms for indoors or outside, based on the wonderful world around us. Philippa tries to incorporate implied or actual movement into her work, either by the way it’s constructed, or seeing the way simple components become something else once they’ve multiplied.

Philippa is currently taking a Metalwork for Sculptors course to enrich her design possibilities and is inspired by giving people joy through her work. Philippa enjoys participating in the Peacock Arts Trail as it gives her a sense of pride in her surroundings and community and it gives her an opportunity to connect with the public.

This will be Breige’s third Peacock Arts Trail! Describing herself as being mainly self taught, Breige uses traditional techniques and equipment and she can usually be found in her workshop in her family home.

Whilst Breige enjoys working with newly sourced metal and stones, her true passion is working with a piece of jewellery that has meaning, perhaps a piece left by a loved one, taking it and breathing life back into it. She says, “making people happy inspires me! It’s such a wonderful feeling, particularly when I rework an heirloom piece. With any piece of jewellery I make, the privilege is all mine. It is such an honour when a customer asks me to make them an engagement band, a wedding ring, remodel a piece of jewellery, as if I step outside of my life and straight into theirs”.

Seascapes and landscapes seen on her travels influence Jane’s ceramics. She loves throwing – which she finds addictive! – and trying out new shapes. Though she finds glazing always a tense time as so much work is easily ruined at the last minute!

This is Jane’s first time exhibiting on the Peacock Arts Trail and she is excited to show her work to a wide audience and seeing which ideas are successful. When asked how art has changed her life, Jane reflects, “what else is there to do? It is so fulfilling and therapeutic”.

Jan uses watercolour and gouache, sometimes combined with coloured crayon, preferring this medium because of the glowing brightness of the colour, which fits in with the subject matter of her work. Encouraged by her parents, Jan realised that her real interest lay in the ‘magical’ things that always seemed to sizzle out from the rural places where she most loves to be.

“I’ve always loved colour…the natural world gives me my inspiration, and I like to go directly and freshly there to see what I can find with all my senses open. I think that a personal link to the natural world is so important for all of us”

Jan also teaches three painting sessions a week from her kitchen table, demonstrating a variety of techniques that, “hopefully will enable people to find and develop their own areas of interest”.

When asked if art has changed her life, Jan says, “yes it’s changed my life in a very enriching way, and it’s a wonderful way to escape from yourself into another outside world, as well as continually developing an expressive skill”.

Cheryl’s work is very spontaneous, with the shapes not being planned or designed in advance, and is inspired by nature and emotions. She works from a studio in her garden which she describes as, “quite small and womb-like, a very precious space in which to escape”.

Cheryl enjoys opening the kiln to find out if work has turned out as expected and, “to embrace the sometimes unexpected results”. She finds her main challenge is spending so much time alone in her studio and so finds the arts trail a most “enjoyable way to engage with enthusiasts, and to receive feedback”.

The Glass Collective is a group of glass artists who meet regularly to design, explore and create independently or collaboratively.

This is the fourth time they have joined us on the Peacock Arts Trail. “Currently we are investigating different facets of art that extend and compliment our glass. These include calligraphy, painting and textiles”.

Victoria prefers the immersive part of her work, simply sitting at her bench and enjoying the making process. Her jewellery is elegant and understated with a focus on clean lines, soft brushed finishes and minimalist designs.

Ethics are integral to Victoria’s work, which means only using recycled and Fairtrade metals, and beautiful ethical gemstones.

When not running her own business, she can be found juggling the challenges of parenthood, helping to organise the Peacock Arts Trail*, walking the dog and spending as much time as she can in the garden.

Participating in the Peacock Arts Trail is very important to Victoria – “it’s great to meet other local artists/makers, get my name out there and just generally have a chat with lovely people who appreciate the hard work that goes into handmade jewellery”.

* Victoria is one of the Peacock organisers – please feel free to drop in and ask any questions about the Trail itself!

You will find Cathy in the wonderful gardens at the Almshouses, exhibiting her outdoor stone sculpture.

Thanks for reading. Tune in tomorrow when we journey to the Pound Arts Centre…


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