Wed, 29 Aug 2018
For a small village, Stanford Dingley has an exceptional number of professionally trained creative people who live, work or have close family ties to the village.
This weekend, an exhibition organised by painter Anne Payton and co-curated by photographer Jane Body, who owns the barn at Jewell’s Farm, pulls together work by 18 diverse artists & craftsmen in the farm’s 18th century barn. They work across a wide range of mediums with an impressive range of skills.
The artists are supporting and raising the profile of Friends of St Denys, a new charity set up to help conserve the fabric of the building and wake up the 1,000 year old history of this grade one listed church, one of the oldest in Berkshire. Rather than a gallery commission for the artists, a proportion of all sales will go direct to the charity. Bookbinder Lorna McCurdy, who produces handmade books, has made a special edition of notebooks inspired by the charity image of the church.
The work, on show for a second weekend, ranges from Jim Crockatt’s turned wood bowls and platters and handmade wooden mirrors by Thornton Smith to quirky model making from Pea Brodhurst. There are upholstery chairs and lampshades by Aimee Payton, a textile artist who uses reclaimed and vintage fabrics. Candida Kennedy’s illustrations are fun and have appeared in national magazines – she is best known for her commissioned maps of people’s houses. International images appear from both Toby Madden and Chris Pratt’s travel and street photography. Toby worked as a staff photographer at The Independent. His brother Dominic has developed a new collage style and evocative, fluid marks in his paintings inspired by the River Pang which runs through the village. Fergus Madden has a delightful charcoal drawing of the river, too, retired from medicine, he has been drawing all his life.
Walks in the surrounding fields and farm land have inspired many – Anne Payton’s dynamic large oil paintings, Holly Lombardo’s series of bright cheerful photographs and book of images and Janet Tomlinson’s wild birds in her detailed paintings. Simon Tarrant’s oil paintings of the valley relate in subject to both Sue Logan’s and Charlotte Holland’s work. Visitors have remarked how the work by accomplished Charlotte Hollands, who has just begun her career, are like 18th century still life with traditional realist techniques. She continues her studies at the London Fine Art Studios where she won the De Laszlo scholarship 2017.
Horticulture expert Stuart Logan shows his photographs and in the midst of the creative hub, the vast table is lovely to sit around for a while, to watch Jane Body’s table wreath decorations demonstration - an extension of her garden and plant photographs. The barn is full of colour and is a bit of a gem in itself.
Exhibition open Saturday and Sunday, 10.30am to 5pm