Helen Shaddock at Hatton Gallery

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Last weekend, along with a friend I escaped Glasgow and headed to Newcastle upon Tyne to see Newcastle Universities MFA Summer Show and especially Helen Shaddock‘s new work.

I’m a bit shocked that I’ve not introduced you to her work before. We both share a love of maps and paper and it has been been fascinating to see her work progress over the years. We may work in very different ways and while she is definitely an artist and I’m more of an artisan (someone who works with their hands) her work has inspired me on numerous occasions. Her love of colour and fascination with form is amazing and never fails to inspire me. Earlier this year she left Glasgow to start the Master of Fine Art course in Newcastle and this was my first chance to see how her latest work.

Along with other first, second year students and some Ph.d students they’ve put on an impressive summer show at the Hatton GalleryHere’s a taster of Helen’s work

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If you’re in Newcastle please seek it out. As you can see here (hint: click on the pictures to get more info) there is such a diversity in work, practice and use of space not only for the artist but for you the viewer. You need to explore the whole building to find all the artists sometimes with rooms hiding round corners or opening up at the top of narrow staircases. At the time Helen asked me if I thought there were similarities in their work. I didn’t think so, but retrospectively I’d have to say movement is the key. Not just because you can see they are on an artistic journey but because time/movement is an element of each piece whether by design or through serendipity.

Apart from Helen’s work the other stand outs for me were Paul Martin Hughes’ kinetic sculpture which had an amazing hypnotic rhythm to it. Mirela Bistran’s textiles and naturally dyed work and Yein Son’s Noctarine 3.12.

Well done to all of you, I’m already looking forward to next year.

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Thank you to Helen Shaddock for letting my photograph her work.

The exhibition at Hatton Gallery runs until 5th September 2015

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