One of the few sculptors who casts his own work, Laurence Edwards is fascinated by human anatomy and the metamorphosis of form and matter that governs the lost-wax process. The driving force behind his work is bronze, an alloy that physically and metaphorically illustrates entropy, the natural tendency of any system in time to tend towards disorder and chaos. His sculptures express the raw liquid power of bronze, its versatility, mass and evolution, and the variety of process marks he retains tell the story of how and why each work came to be.
In May 2016 his newest work, A Thousand Tides, was at his Suffolk studio, Butley Mills. You can find out more about the process behind its creation in this video.
Christopher Le Brun PRA praised Edwards specifically for his ability to blur the boundaries between man and nature. And organic forms continue to literally influence his work, be it Suffolk grasses mixed into the process clay, or cast into elements that transform his figures into something allegorical or mythic.
Penny Arcade is a force of nature. At the 2016 Norfolk & Norwich Festival, the former Andy Warhol Factory superstar and internationally respected writer, poet, actress, theatre maker and icon of artistic resistance presented Longing Lasts Longer.
Edinburgh’s double award-winning show from New York’s undisputed queen of the underground turned contemporary stand -up on its head to create a crack in the post-gentrified landscape. Driven by her magnetic rock n’ roll energy, Arcade’s razor sharp satire was mixed live to euphoric soundscapes inspired by four decades of pop culture.
2016’s edition of FlipSide Festival, in partnership with Norfolk Contemporary Art Society, East Anglia Art Fund and Great Yarmouth Preservation Trust, presented an exhibition of Ron King’s work at Skippings Gallery, Great Yarmouth.
Born in São Paulo, Brazil in 1932, Ron still has a strong attachment to the country and its culture. At the age of 12 he became fascinated with the macabre photograph that he saw in a book of his father’s of the decapitated heads of the infamous bandit leader Lampião and his notorious band. It’s this image that was the basis for the exhibition at the gallery in May 2016.
Fairhurst Gallery in Norwich is host to an Oliver Bedeman exhibition.
Oliver Bedeman is a figurative painter whose work focuses on imagined and often dream-like portraiture. He takes inspiration from the city through drawing, and in his studio combines this observation with a colourful interpretation of literature, music and story-telling – with figures such as Alan Ginsberg, Stephen Foster and Nature Boy recurring as silent characters.
The incomparable Josephine Foster came to Norwich Arts Centre for one night only in May 2016.
Josephine Foster is a modern American folk singer-songwriter and musician from Colorado. As an adolescent she worked as a funeral and wedding singer, and aspired to become an opera singer. Several years later she abandoned the idea and began to record demos of her songs, resulting in the early recordings There are Eyes Above (2000), an album of ukulele accompanied songs strongly influenced by Tin Pan Alley, and a short album of children’s songs, Little Life (2001).
On 5th May, she performed songs from her long career, plus music from her latest album No More Lamps, which was released in February 2016.
Plan a trip to Norwich for the Arts Centre’s excellent live music programme. Visit Norwich is the perfect place to start.
In May 2016, The Cut in Halesworth was temporarily home to an exhibition of British abstract painter John McLean’s work.
The exhibition featured some of McLean’s paintings and prints. The vitality in everything John McLean makes is heartfelt and engaging.
It’s possible to see some of McLean’s work on permanent display in the East, too. In Norwich Cathedral his three, large stained glass windows are installed in the North Aisle, and can be seen year-round.
Plan a trip to Halesworth to visit The Cut, where there’s a year-round programme of great performance, art and film.
Joanne Harris visited the University of East Anglia in April 2016 as part of the UEA Spring Literary Festival.
Joanne Harris is one of the UK’s best loved and most versatile novelists. Working for many years as a school teacher, she secured global recognition with Chocolat in 1999 (later made into an Oscar-nominated movie starring Juliette Binoche and Johnny Depp). Two further novels created the sensuous, magical Lansquenet trilogy (Lollipop Shoes, Peaches for Monsieur le Curé). She has since written many highly acclaimed novels in diverse genres including historical fiction, fantasy based on Norse myth, and the Malbry cycle of psychological suspense (Gentlemen & Players, Blueeyedboy). Different Class, her latest novel, enters into this territory and reveals a writer operating at her darkest and most unsettling pitch. Find out more about UEA Spring Literary Festival. UEA holds two literary festivals each year. Plan a trip to the Autumn Festival with Visit Norwich.
On 20th April as part of SPIEL, Norwich Arts Centre’s series of artist talks, Marcia X welcomed guests to hear her talk about her practice.
Marcia X was born and raised in Chicago IL to immigrant parents in 1985. Inspired by her early travels to the Caribbean and US history and politics, she predominantly works in themes relating to the experience of the Diaspora, history, feminism, politics and socioeconomic issues. As a multidisciplinary artist, her mediums vary from print to installation, and currently is exploring minimalist abstract painting. She has her BA in Fine Art and is furthering her studies to attain an MA in Political, Social and International Theory. She lives and works in the Diaspora.
Marcia X’s visual work revolves around understanding the psychological and emotional affects of living in the unhomely place of the Diaspora. Her spoken word, performance and writings aim to confront issues of race, gender and history, particularly within the context of art practice.
We’ve explored Thomas Wolsey’s ambitions for Ipswich in previous Culture365 posts, but today we’re taking a closer look at Wolsey himself.
Wolsey was born in Ipswich in March 1473, and his father was widely thought to have been a butcher or cattle dealer. These humble beginnings would serve Wolsey well, as Henry VII introduced measures to curb the power of the nobility, instead favouring those from modest backgrounds.
During his fourteen years of chancellorship, due to his close relationship with King Henry VIII, Cardinal Wolsey had more power than any other Crown servant in English history. From 1515 to 1529, Wolsey’s rule was undisputed. Henry VIII delegated more and more state business to him, including near-complete control of England’s foreign policy.
Traces of Wolsey’s links to Ipswich can be seen to this day, with a number of places in the town named after the chancellor, including a pub, and of course, the New Wolsey Theatre.
Another of Norwich’s lesser-known children, Harriet Martineau was a social theorist and Whig writer, often cited as the first female sociologist.
Born in 1802, Martineau wrote many books and a multitude of essays from a sociological, holistic, religious, domestic, and perhaps most controversially, feminine perspective; she also translated various works from Auguste Comte. She earned enough to be supported entirely by her writing, a rare feat for a woman in the Victorian era. A young Princess Victoria enjoyed reading Martineau’s publications. The queen invited Martineau to her coronation in 1838 —an event which Martineau described, in great and amusing detail, to her many readers.