Sunday, July 14, 2013

My Sister's Art Exhibition

Many of you may know my sister, Amanda Temple, who is a lifestyle photographer like me, and also a highly successful fine art artist. She has had a solo show at Masterworks, in the Botanical Gardens, over the last few weeks. Sadly, the show is coming to an end, with Tuesday being the last day to see all her amazing work together in one place. The gallery has agreed to stay open late on Tuesday so she will be there for a closing gathering for those who couldn't make it to the opening nor were since able to go during the day. She will be there from 4 - 6:30pm on Tuesday, 16th July, so if you haven't seen it yet, you mustn't miss the show as this is your last chance. It is also a great opportunity to go again to chat with her about her processes and what she did to create each piece.

I have been so blown away by her creativity, perseverance and vision for the final pieces, for it must have been hard to see the end product in those early stages when she first started experimenting with all the different processes of canvas and metal preparations. Many of the pieces in this show combine Amanda's love of painting and all the richness of depth and textures that come with building up a canvas, with her passion for photography. She spent countless hours preparing each surface with layers of goo (who knows what she put on there!) before painstakingly laying the whisper thin sheets of gold or silver leaf before printing her photographs on top and then sealing them with UV coatings to protect the beautiful light giving images. The art is so beautiful, so glowy and deliciously deep in colour and texture that I literally feel I am swimming in each piece. I would happily cover my whole home in these photos, which may sound like I am just being a loyal sister, but to be frank, even though I am a photographer myself, I have always felt photos did not belong as art on walls. I love them in halls, or bathrooms, and on table tops, but not centre place on living room walls and the like. I only have paintings all round my home, but for the first time in my life, I I am going to diverge from my rule for I believe that these photos cross the line into true art - I can't wait to hang a triptych of her pieces above my fireplace in my fave room in the house!

When you go to the exhibition, be sure to do one of two things to properly see the glowy deliciousness of the works. The above photo of this piece was photographed in ordinary daylight. But the below left one I shot from where I was standing and viewing at the show. The lights were coming straight from overhead, so not lighting it from the front the way it would be lit in a home where light comes in across from a window rather than from above. The right one below is me shooting the pice from below so that I am at the perfect angle for the overhead lights. Such a huge difference so you can image how heavenly and vibrant they will be when in a well lit room (in your house!!!). What I recommend when you go to see the show is to either very gently lift the back base of the canvas or metal to tip it up towards the light, or if you are (understandably) nervous about touching the art, then simply drop to your knees and that will allow the lights to hit the art at the right angle so you can see them properly. Plus, kneeling will make it look like you are really worshiping Amanda's art which is great marketing!!

Another surface Amanda has been experimenting with is metal. She has taken different mediums, from aluminum to brass, and either sanded them, corroded them or done other cool stuff to them to give a luminescent quality to the art. It worked really well for the more detailed imagery, and my particular faves were these sea urchins, which are so utterly beautiful anyway, but she captured them in such a simple and elegant way.

As well as her amazing surfaces she creates to print her images on, she has also recently been experimenting with other mediums, including enlisting our mother's help in building these beautiful pieces out of the driftwood she finds off the rocks and beach beneath her dreamy coastal cottage. Her first piece they created together was a giant heart, which is about 5 feet across and hangs on a an oversized outdoor wall at her house and fills the space perfectly, adding charm to her patio. She has always loved the irregularity of pears and has enjoyed photographing them over the years, but this structure blew me away - I am so smitten and dying to have it sitting by my pool, though I think it would probably be happier in the long run to have a covered terrace to live on which we do not have (yet)!

Amanda has always loved painting as well, and in particular, incorporating all sorts of non-paint elements such as dirt, egg shells and sand to give the art texture. She had the below painting hanging centre stage in her living room, though it has now sold so she has mixed feelings of pride that someone loved it enough to buy it, but also regret, for she adored it in her home. I told her now it is a challenge to paint something new and ever more fabulous!

Here is a selection of my faves:

Would love to buy a couple of these poppy ones for my new kitchen!!!

These are feathers from her sweet pet chicken!

I know this must seem like I am gushing about Amanda because I am a lovely supportive sister, and indeed I am that (obviously!!), but she has had shows before, yet I have never raved quite so much about them. I really feel like she has come into her own as an artist, and taken her art to a whole new level with this body of work. Every piece is strong in its own right (hello - please may I buy them all!), and the collection of work displayed all together is just breath taking. I really wish everyone in Bermuda could get a chance to see the show in these last two days, for it is not to be missed. Please share her blog and this post with anyone you feel might enjoy the work and if you have not been yet, go to the closing gathering on Tuesday evening - last chance! xxxx

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