It was a year ago yesterday that myself, Polly, Joy and Donna had a meeting at ACEarts to discuss the FIFTY BEES exhibition. We sat on the sofas, measured walls, talked and talked and decided that these three wonderful women would be called the beekeepers.
Well, with fifty artists to coordinate, it made sense to share out some of the work. Now, I look back at this picture with amazement.
We had no idea how it was going to work, whether the story of the bees would translate into an exhibition, whether anyone would be interested.
But, wow! It was wonderful. The fifty artists made such a wide variety of art, amazing responses to these incredible creatures.
But it wouldn’t have worked without the enthusiasm and keenness of them all as well as Nina and the team at the gallery.
Now, we’re gearing up for the next leg of the journey at Richard Jefferies Museum – can’t wait. Thanks everyone.
#vintagecontainer #bees #fiftybees #artists #somersetartist #opencall #interconnectedness
Poor photographers, wonderful exhibition.I’m not usually short for words but I am for this one.
’If I’m Not Back I’m There’ by Edwina Bridgman at ACEarts just had me spellbound, transfixed, enlightened and happy.
So much to see on one central display, get down and look at it as a child would see it.
Papier-mâché, found materials, card, clay.
2 and 3-dimensional work exploring found objects and unexpected materials to create a body of work around people and their animals.
I so admire Edwina’s deft handling of her materials – quite jealous of her confidence.
Go, see, enjoy.
This is the Bilberry Bumblebee, paired with its companion piece by Helen Hickman of Nellie and Eve.
This is what Helen says about her work.
“My creation is inspired by the landscape that Bombus Monticola (Bilberry Bumble Bee) and I live in.
Surrounded by species rich heath and peat bogs in the Welsh hills, Bilberry feeds on plants such as gorse, blackberry and of course, bilberries, which line banks.
As a spinner, weaver and dyer my material of choice is local wool, a much undervalued, sustainable fibre.
By carefully foraging for plants that produce rich, natural dyes for my hand spun yarns, crochet hexagons become ‘honeycomb’ inside a used ‘brood’ frame representing how it is possible to mindfully interact and interconnect with our natural environment.”
As promised, I’m going to start sharing the work of the other artists in the FIFTY BEES exhibition. And I thought I should start with Polly Hughes as she has been working on the honey bee, the most well know of the bees.
What I absolutely adore about this piece is Polly’s use of patchwork, a very traditional, often overlooked women’s craft, to make us look with fresh eyes on the dance of bee.
She writes: ‘This bee is not only a honey producer but also one of the most important insect pollinators of both crop plants and wild flowers. Today, as never before, the honey-bee faces the danger of careless spraying of insecticides and weedkillers on plants in bloom, as well as disease and adverse weather conditions.
Bees communicate the finding of food by dancing on the vertical comb. The Waggle Dance is used when the food is more than 100 metres away from the hive. The dancing bee runs in one direction, waggling her body very quickly from side to side. She then turns round and runs in a semi-circle back to the starting point, repeating the performance again and again. The angle of the waggle tells both the sun-compass direction to fly, and how far.
The silhouette footprints are a recreation of dance step guides. The beaded Waggle Dance is embroidered onto hexagonal patchwork cells.’
And this is my companion piece.
I’ve been buzzing around at high speed, making work, organising and curating for months.
Last nights private view #beesup was A M A Z I N G – around 250 people came. I am absolutely over the moon, blown away and flabbergasted.
Thanks to all at ACEarts and the team of beekeepers Donna Vale, Joy Merron and Polly Hughes for all of your hard work and to all of the artists and visitors.
Today, I find myself exhausted so I’m going to have a little lie down and start sharing the works with you tomorrow. Xxx