Arts & Culture
by Aspect County

The Marshes exhibition
A rich and diverse habitat of tranquility captured in landscape and detail

The area from Rye to Hythe is sandwiched between the English Channel and the Royal Military Canal. This is reclaimed land largely created by longshore drift, much of which formed during the winter storms of 1287. Famous for the Romney Marsh Sheep, this mix of rich agricultural land, salt marshes, shingle beaches and freshwater tributaries is a haven for wildlife and is an important resting place for migrating winter birds.

Similar marshes stretch along Britain’s east coast and these diverse habitats are home to many wildlife artists as well as the nesting birds. Sketching from life brings a spontaneity, enabling the artist to identify not just the markings and shape, but also the posture and pose.

Such landscapes are rarely still and yet have a tranquility that captivates the painter. Draw close to admire the marks expressing the wind in the reeds and gently flowing waters. Stand back to experience the atmosphere, the wide open skies and the misty, moody levels. Romney Marsh, Faversham Creek, the Fens and rural Northumberland have all given inspiration to the artist.

Ceramics have been chosen for their serenity and ability to complement the landscape, belying that final moment that is so exciting to a ceramic artist- the balance between control and the magic of fire. Through softness and luminosity created by the gentle fusing and shifting of glazes or the fierce, smoky smelly salt firing, the artists’ close attention to the task is required over a 39 hour period. There is a long process of observation, hand building, incising and burnishing. Each type of clay reacts differently to the heat, oxidising and glazing in a unique fashion. Each artist chooses and understands their level of influence.

On the eastern edge of Sussex, surrounded by beautiful countryside, Artichoke Gallery is in the heart of Ticehurst, a Wealden village with an eclectic selection of small creative businesses. In addition to featuring the work of artist/owners Vicki Atkinson, Liz Moys and Louisa Crispin, there are quarterly exhibitions of painting, sculpture, ceramics and jewellery from some of the leading artists and makers in the country.

The Gallery has a spacious, relaxed atmosphere to show off the contemporary delights on offer, ideal for sourcing that extra special present from highly skilled artisans. You can check out the website for a taster but better still, pop in for a sensory treat.

The Marshes” runs from 2 April to 25 June 2016 with a preview opening on 1 April from 68 pm. 

Artichoke Gallery, Church Street, Ticehurst TN5 7AE Open Tuesday to Saturday 9.30am to 4.30pm Telephone 01580 200905 artichokegallery@​gmail.​com