All the children took turns to work with a mixed media artist, Jacqui Smithson, using coloured merino wool to make leaf designs and trees. These will eventually be put together to form a colourful display in the school’s entrance hall.
The children were very focused and obviously enjoyed the experience.
Our society supported this project which involved more than 500 primary aged children from Leamington Spa meeting together to link by Skype with the school in Bo, Sierra Leone. The funding provided art materials for work inspired by a Sierra Leonean artist. The children also learned about the culture through music, songs and traditional stories from Sierra Leone.
This was a competition open to all the societies in the West Midlands. We are very pleased that Rosie Taylor, an A-level student from North Leamington School had her work selected; it was one of 14 from a total of 37 entries. The piece, ‘Lungs’, will go forward to the final judging in May 2017. Her work will be on display at RBSA in Birmingham during the national Society’s AGM.
Members enjoyed an excellent visit to Hellens Manor in Herefordshire. This is one of the oldest buildings in England with some 12th Century foundations and Tudor, Jacobean and Georgian architecture. After an informative guided tour, the day concluded with afternoon tea and cake in the sunshine.
The day also included morning coffee, a guided tour and lunch at Weston’s Cider Museum.
This excursion was to Renishaw Hall, a grade 1 listed country house in Derbyshire. It was built in 1627 by George Sitwell but has been altered over the centuries. It has remained in the Sitwell family and in 2009 the 7th baronet, the nephew of Edith and Osbert, bequeathed it to his daughter, Alexandra.
It featured in the 1980 BBC adaptation of Pride and Prejudice and is said to have been Lawrence’s inspiration for Lady Chatterley’s Lover.
The house is only open to groups by private arrangement but the gardens, including a highly regarded Italianate garden, are open to the public.
Note the correction of date (27th not 28th)
Thirty five members have booked to stay at the Duchess of Cornwall Inn in Poundbury. We have booked all 20 rooms so will have the Inn to ourselves for 3 nights!
Over the centuries the Dorset landscape has inspired artists, writers and scientists to produce outstanding work. We will meet John Makepeace, One of the most renowned furniture makers of the last fifty years in his historic house, Farrs in Beaminster. We will visit the Elizabethan Mapperton House, which featured recently in the film adaptation of Far from the Madding Crowd, Dennis China Works, the home and studio of Sally Tuffin, one of U.K.’s leading pottery designers, and Hardy’s cottage.
Also maybe featuring:
– Kingston Lacy – Rubens, Van Dyke, Titian and Brueghel – and the largest collection of Egyptian artefacts in the UK.
– Sherborne Abbey and Castle, famous for beautiful collections of art, antiques and furniture.
– Russell Cotes Gallery and Museum – a most extravagant birthday present for his wife!
– Dorset County Museum with a fantastic collection of 150 pieces by local artists over the years.
This year we have started a new project at All Saints’ Parish Church, Leamington Spa. The work involves the repair and conservation of ecclesiastical embroidery, ranging in size from small collection purses to large altar frontals.
A group of eight needlewomen, some extremely skilled and some not so skilled, embarked on a two day training course in August and since then they have met weekly to start the mammoth task in front of them.
So far they have repaired and cleaned a number of small collection purses and have completed work on a chasuble, modeled in the photo by the Vicar. They are now working on various items including veils, burses and banners.
The work will occupy the group for a considerable amount of time and if you would like help or to see the volunteers at work, do visit the church on a Wednesday morning after 10.30am when the church and café are open – but not on an Arts Society Royal Leamington Spa lecture day.
On the 17th February 2017, we are in for a treat with a day of Special Interest on Riviera Paradise – A Fusion of Art, Design and Pleasure on the Cote d’Azur in the 1920s by Mary Alexander who has been highly rated on her previous visits to us. While it may be grey and cold in Warwickshire, she will take us on Le Train Bleu, with its newly commissioned windows by Lalique, to the blue skies of the Cote d Azur in the 1920s and 1930s. The story will fuse the art of Picasso and Matisse with the music of Cole Porter, the designs of Chanel, the writing of Scott Fitzgerald and Hemingway and the work of many other fascinating and talented people.
Tickets costing £40 will be on sale on the 30th November.
On the 1st March 2017, Jane Tapley, another “old friend” whom we highly esteem, will be talking about the Social Life in spa towns. Any member can "bring a friend for free" to the lecture which they would normally attend on that day. In this we are following the example of other societies and I hope it will compensate for you not being able to bring a guest to our lecture in the Spa Centre’s Studio on the 30th November.
Finally can I urge you to think of taking on, in July 2017, Lesley Rayner’s role as our RLS DFAS secretary (and not any individual’s secretary) as I mentioned at our last lecture.