Wednesday, 12 September 2018

OUR WHITE BICYCLE. HOAD AND THE TOUR OF BRITAIN




A bit of cycledelia for starters...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7JhZqWCqKs8

The Cycling Tour of Britain was due to pass through Ulverston on September 7th, and the stages across the country were marked with various artworks including bike designs on fields and the sides of hills.

Alex and me were asked to make one in the shadow of the Sir John Barrow Monument. We made various suggestions as to a safe and temporary material and in the end went for some recyclable layflat drainage tubing and several hundred tent pegs. The design came from a local school, the weather was decent, and by the time I'd been convinced to stick with the original site and scale (sorry mate) it was an enjoyable task.


We decided to avoid paths, bracken and rocks, and we needed space so the angle was the best on offer. And I should say that, yes, if you draw something with two large circles underneath something like Hoad Monument then you had better expect consequences, from some angles at least.

We were joined by spectators, well-wishers and even helpers (thanks to Emily, and to Simon, Sam, Theo and Sonny) These pics (larger images by Lindsay Ward) tell something of the story, and Paul Leviston's drone pic shows the finished piece.

It came down yesterday, having been up for a week. It's been well received, and featured strongly in the live ITV coverage, which gave the Tour, Ulverston - and us - an audience of millions.

Our thanks to UTC, Les Tallon the Monument Keeper, for the use of the Monument as store room and workshop, and to Townlands, Alan Edmondson and his sheep for the use of the land.


OUR NEXT EVENT: PRINTMAKING AT THE COTTAGE WITH ELLIE CHANEY


The latest arts session  from the SJB3 project takes place at the Sir John Barrow Cottage on Sunday 23rd Of September from 11am to 3pm.


Artist Ellie Chaney will be presenting a printmaking workshop in which visitors can design personal Book Plates inspired by those found in Sir John Barrow's books. You will learn simple printing techniques and  make some attractive and useful work, all in the unique and atmospheric of this beautiful 18th Century cottage at Dragley Beck.

Admission is free, materials are provided, and while the session is suitable for all ages and levels of experience children should be accompanied by an adult.

The SJB3 project is organised by Artspace and is supported by Arts Council England, The Sir John Fisher Foundation, Townlands Trust and Ulverston Town Council. 

Monday, 13 August 2018

ELLIE CHANEY AND GUESTS: DRAWING IN THE COTTAGE GARDEN


After seeing an example of Anna Marie Truter's botanical drawing during the course of Ellie's research it was clear that a drawing session at the Cottage would be appropriate.  In the absence of much of Truter's work, what better way to introduce and provide context for her story than to invite people to produce new work of their own.

And so on sunday Ellie Chaney invited visitors to meet in Truter's husband's family garden to search among its plants and overgrowth, and record what they found.

Drawing is fundamental; it's a way of  developing an understanding of the world by examining it and giving an account of what you see. A way of defining the relationship between you and what isn't you.

It can be difficult and requiring of a cold eye. It can be a way of passing on primary information about personal experience or objective reality.
Equally, it can provoke a shared experience.
And if you work in other disciplines, requiring a different kind of enquiry or response  it can be like calling home.


As always we also had a number of visitors who were there to see the cottage. Dan from Greenlane arrived to work on the garden, and when the session moved indoors to avoid the rain there were questions and conversations about the building, books opened and passed around, and addresses exchanged.

Ellie's session was a great example of what we are trying to do here, to reposition the cottage as a living space with a role in the life of the town. A site for creativity, expression and serious intent, but not just something colonised by artists. Something accessible and available, to be examined and remade by whoever walks through the door.

And the drawings produced were really good.  Scroll down for more pictures.

More of this I think.






"Lovely relaxing afternoon. Great to be given space to get back into drawing with no pressure."

"A very enjoyable time spent observing in the garden. Very tranquil."

"Fascinating. Definately taught me to look at plants in more detail."












Wednesday, 8 August 2018

BUGS AND BOTANICALS AT THE SJB COTTAGE. A FREE DRAWING WORKSHOP WITH ELLIE CHANEY

Coming up, Sunday the 12th at the Cottage.
Come and meet Ellie Chaney, explore the cottage garden and take part in her free drawing workshop...
All comers welcome, Children should be accompanied by an adult.
Use your own materials or ours.


Saturday, 28 July 2018

UNDER THE WEATHER. THE 'OSS BIDES HIS TIME.

I put a mic under the velux last night and woke to find  a recording of screaming gulls and the first hours of a storm. Towards the end there's just a series of oddly rhythmic bumps and shuffles that made me wonder if I'd just subjected a sensitive mic to several hours of sustained abuse.

The mic is fine though, so it could be the response of a fading battery, either way it made for interesting listening for Alex and me this morning while the next few gallons poured down onto the cottage.

Between deluges we still had visitors. Some have become regulars. Others have been drawn by stories of renovation and a feel for period detail, or are curious about the open door into a childhood mystery.
A camper wandered up from Bardsea; liked the building and the 'obby 'oss but declined a look into the attic...

Ah yes, the 'oss.  The 'oss has grown a jaw, and will soon be up and about on poles.  Nine feet plus of occupied hollow, set to bend and sway  under drapery and a winter sky.


Thursday, 26 July 2018

A KITCHEN OF DISTINCTION. LINDSAY, EMILY, IAIN, MARZIPAN.

It's been a sunny day in Ulverston and the cottage was the best place to cool down, chat and make something sweet, colourful and nut-free if required with Lindsay Ward and her assistant Emily.

Our neighbours brought flowers to brighten the room, Iain was on hand with the introductions and the local knowledge, and soon one half of the cottage was buzzing with talk about Sir John, the Ice Age, The Isle Of Man and the the Roman occupation while in the other half our visitors sat down with Lindsay and Emily and got to work..




There is something very pleasing about making a small pear from marzipan...I had first go...my bananas weren't quite as successful...











We'll be in the cottage again on saturday (July 28th), this time with Alex. The plan is to walk his 9ft high 'obby' 'oss around the garden.
Iain will be on hand next thursday with his books, artefacts and arcane  knowledge, and on August 11th, Ellie Chaney will be hosting a drawing session.
Look out for more information.

So, plenty going on at The Sir John Barrow Cottage.

Luckily Emily provided a visitors comments book for today..

"an unexpected surprise for us to take part in some wonderful marzipan fruit decorating. Thank you."

"...expert tuition from Emily Ward and Lindsay, Emily's mum."


Come and see us.





Saturday, 21 July 2018

DRY FELTING AT ULVERSTON LIBRARY WITH LEX BLAKEWAY


Well, that went well.
Many thanks to all who took part in Lexi's felting session today, and to Ulverston Library for hosting this and the exhibition of her work.
Hopefully we can do some more of these sessions.. there's clearly plenty of interest and skill
out there.

Great work Lexi.