Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Society of Graphic Fine Art - 85th Annual Open 12th-23rd September

Causse Country
Pastel 19.5" x 25"

In April this year I was elected an Associate Member of the Society of Graphic Fine Art (SGFA) by the SGFA Council. The pastel painting shown above will be exhibited (and is for sale) at the 85th Annual Open Exhibition of the Society of Graphic Fine Art - at the Menier Gallery at 51 Southwark Street in central London.

The SGFA promotes fine drawing skills whether with brush, pen, charcoal, conté or any other forms of original printmaking. About 200 drawings and prints will be exhibited. I will also have three drawings in the folio stand at the Exhibition.

The original plein air sketch for Causse Country was done while I sat at the very edge of this pool in south west France. It was a blisteringly hot day and the pool was cool and tranquil. The colours and dappled shadows were simply stunning and begged to be drawn. It was one of those occasions when you know you want to create something straight away but you need to walk away from it first. Plus I had to wait until the sun moved and I had enough shadow to sit in and draw given the heat! So - with all this in mind - I walked away and worked on a different view during the morning. I then came back to this one in the afternoon with my eye adjusted to the place, the colours and the values. Plus I'd worked out by then pretty much what was happening with the shadows and waited until I got what I wanted. I vividly remember going paddling in that water at the front of the sketch while taking a break from sketching!

I have racked my brains ever since to remember the name of this particular place as I have two more pieces from that day's trip. I know I was staying in a little village called Opoul Perillos - just north of Perpignan - in the Pyrenees Orientales area of the Languedoc-Roussillon region - and that's about it............

I tried something different with this pastel work. I'm very fond of it and had it hanging in one of my main rooms for some time - but without glass. During that time the pastel has 'cured'. The high quality of the pigments used in my Unison Pastels has also been clearly demonstrated as it hung in a position with very good indirect light (ie no direct sunlight) - and the pigment in my Unison Pastels has lost none of its colour strength and saturation. I'm very pleased with its new frame in American Walnut. I've not used it before but it is simply gorgeous - a very soft dark wood which fits absolutely beautifully with the darker colours.

The exhibition opens next Tuesday 12th September at the Menier Gallery in Southwark and runs until Saturday 23rd September. Opening hours are 10.00 - 6.00 but it will close at 2pm on the last day.

Jacqueline Rizvi RBA RWS NEAC will formally open the exhibition and present the awards and prizes at the Private View at 6.oo - 8.00 pm next Tuesday (12th September). Unfortunately this clashes with a prior commitment for me and I'll have to miss this as I'll be in Cape Cod!

I've included the reverse of the Private View card which shows the gallery's location - inbetween Tate Modern and Southwark Cathedral/London Bridge and one street back from the Thames walk and Borough Market area where I was drawing during the International Sketchcrawl on July 1st. Click on the card to see a bigger image.

You can see more work by SGFA members in the Graphic Art Gallery section of the SGFA's brand new website. As a Drawing Society the gallery demonstrates, as I'm sure the exhibition will do also, the great breadth and range of work which can be accomplished while drawing. Do take a look and/or visit the Exhibition if you're planning to be in London.

Details of:
  • how to join the Society are also available on the website.
  • how to submit to next year's exhibition will also be available in due course. Submission is not limited to members and a note about the type of work accepted for exhibition is below.
Enquiries about how to buy a drawing from the Exhibition or commission a work by an SGFA member painting should be addressed to the Honorary Secretary by e-mailing enquiries@sgfa.org.uk

Note: The Society of Graphic Fine Art exists with the purpose of promoting drawing skills by means of exhibitions for both Members and non – Members work. Suitable artwork for inclusion in this exhibition will be drawings in any medium [ pencil, pen and ink, pastel, scraperboard, charcoal etc ], any original form of printmaking, watercolours and acrylics with evidence of additional drawing [ but NOT pure watercolour, unglazed acrylics or oil paintings].

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  1. You've really done something special with the water in that one.

  2. This is a greatpiece Katherine. I love the overall muted colors with punches of saturated color that shine through. Your strokes on this piece too are very fluid and the two together evoke a wonderful mood that matches your descriotion of that day.


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