Foundry Gallery, North Street, Lewes, to Sunday 6 July 2014
’Artists United’ exhibition has opened for the next few days (from Thursday 3rd July until Sunday 6th July) at the Foundry on North Street in Lewes. Artists United is an annual exhibition of art by artists in a variety of media from Lewes and the surrounding area. This is now the fifth yearly event of its kind and as I wandered in, looking up at the sun filled haunches of The Foundry’s warehouse-esque ceilings, the busy chatter of this popular artistic date brought the warmth of summer and the richness and diversity of local talent very much to the fore.
The welcome of the huge yawning doors of the gallery space, as I made my way through with the numerous other art appreciators, accompanied by the echo of a piano and the melody of a single trumpet, set the mood for a lazy wander around the various contributions from local artists. There are pieces from sculpture to oils, sketches to acrylics, an amble around interlaced with children chomping on locally made pizzas trying to work out what some of the sculptures are, and artists chatting with friends about their contributions to one of the best collective examples of Lewesian creativity in the arts.
The event has been made possible by Lewes Community Football Club, with the idea of bringing the up and coming artists together in the same hanging space as the more locally well-known and established artists. Some of the more well-known Lewesian painters such as Peter Messer, Stephanie Kirk, Neeta Pedersen, Leila Godden, Helen Brown, Andrew Fitchett and Liz Jameson were all there with the likes of well-regarded photographer Xavi Dom Buendia, the sculpture of Charles Greenstead and the works of Louisa Crispin, Rebecca Talisman.
New artists to look out for were Dani Lola and Kate Brigden, whose play on Magritte’s surrealist ‘cést ne pas une pipe’, uses a wooden whistle instead; Kate is one half of ‘Ad Interim’ arts along with Ellie Parry and another part of ‘Brigden and Bayliss’ vintage shop on Station Street. The very beautiful horse silhouettes of Phillppa Cannon stood out with their pastel backgrounds and their dark looming shapes, as well as the turquoise-hued forms of Stephanie Kirk’s hounds with a similarly haunting and yet also light portrayals of the creatures. Classic depictions of the sights and sounds of Brighton were exquisitely sketched in the illustrations of Clare Harms, such as ‘Summer Band Stands’ capturing the seasonal atmosphere of the nearby seaside city. The works more reminiscent of cell formations of Kristina Veasey were also eye-catching. As I leave I feel I have experienced Lewes as a town happy in its appreciation of the arts in general, but also loyal and supportive of the work of its native creators.
There are over a hundred artists and their works being show cased the next few days in Lewes, reasserting the town’s capacity for arts and as an inspiring place and space in which to start and continue to work as an artist. Artists United is highly recommended for all members of the family.
The doors open at 10am and close 6pm on Friday 4th July, Saturday 5th July and Sunday 6th finishing at 3pm.