Virginia Woolf at the Tate St Ives

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This exhibition sums up everything I like about Virginia Woolf and the Visual Arts! The choice of work echoes images and feelings from many of Woolf’s writings. Comfortable images often from within rooms are juxta-posed with viewpoints from great height or visual references that are questioning, ambiguous, difficult to comprehend, but all are about who we are, or who we might be. Elemental landscape in its vastness are substituted for personal landscapes that deal with identity and an individuals makeup. The work on display spanned 100 years, a 100 years of artist questioning, commenting and exploring getting to know oneself.  Each artist endeavouring to find a voice, a personal perspective that explores and explains in part our utter uniqueness that is connected to both home and landscape. The exhibition showcased many well known artists, some of whom we can see regularly such as Dame Laura Knight, Dod Proctor and Agnes Martin; but there were treats, artists less accessible (in Cornwall at least) such as Eileen Agar, Veronica Ryan and Marion Dorn. A must see exhibition where literature becomes visual and the visual tells the story. Virginia  Woolf spent her childhood holidays in St Ives, her writing reflects this. As you sip your coffee in the Tate cafe, you will see the lighthouse, that is said to have inspired Woolf’s ‘To The Lighthouse’, though the novel is set on the Isle of Sky!


So Exciting, Colours, Flowers, Paintings.

Working at The Poly in the newly decorated library is perfect for our Create and Bloom workshops. With tables full of fabric, coloured plastics, withies, buttons, coloured tapes and decorative ephemera, inspired would be creatives, on Tuesday, began to thread, stick, sew and tie together their chosen materials too create exotic blooms. Seeing patient individuals enjoy and resolve making problems whilst chatting about the value and importance of creative practice was an added bonus.

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Popped up to London in between workshops! Modigliani at the Tate Modern has filled my head with lots of new and exciting colours, his ability to repeatedly make portraits of those he loved and admired makes me want to create again and again. Enjoying the act of making, creating, thinking as a constant quest to understand, explore and develop ideas is just so exciting.

There is another workshop at The Poly tomorrow Friday 23rd March,. It would be great to see you if you are nearby. Come and ‘Create & Bloom’.

Create & Bloom 20 & 23 March

It is just one week until our first public workshop at The Poly Falmouth, we are busy contacting people, groups and suppliers to make sure we have all the ingredients for successful visual making workshops. Avid collecting and an imminent Scrap Store visit should provide us with a variety of materials and bolster our enthusiasm to ‘get creative’. In my studio I have been saving fabric scraps and exploring flower shapes, looking at fabric flowers in fashion, botanical illustrations and revisiting images taken at the Eden Project and around the now burgeoning Cornish hedgerows.  Create and Bloom is part of the Get Creative initiative which runs from Saturday 17th – Sunday 25th March  and hundreds of organisations are putting on events to help you get creative – and they’re free or have just a small fee to cover costs.

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Get Creative Festival shines a light on all the great cultural activity that takes place right across the UK on a regular basis and encourages people to try their hand at something new and creative. The annual festival is a merger of the previous Get Creative Weekend and Voluntary Arts Festival – now joined together to make one huge nationwide event.

Get Creative Festival is brought to you by arts and creative organisations and individuals across the UK and is supported by 64 Million Artists, Arts Council England, Arts Council of Northern Ireland, Arts Council of Wales, the BBC, Crafts Council, Creative People and Places, Creative Scotland, Family Arts Campaign, Fun Palaces, Voluntary Arts, and What Next?

We at Aspire Arts are excited about working with The Poly Falmouth and promoting Get Creative as part of Falmouth’s Spring Festival.  Celebrating creativity and creative thinking is at the heart of Aspire Arts and by working with The Poly on ‘Create and Bloom’ we endeavour to build a connection with the local community and promote our expertise in visual arts workshops and portfolio advice.





Lets Get Creative

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Last year Sarah and I facilitated the Big Draw ‘Boatanical’ project with culminated in a display at Princess Pavilions during Falmouth’s Spring Festival. This year we are excited about the Get Creative Festival which is sponsored by leading organisations including 64 Million Artists, Arts Council England, Arts Council of Northern Ireland, Arts Council of Wales, the BBC, Crafts Council, Creative People and Places, Creative Scotland, Family Arts Campaign, Fun Palaces, Voluntary Arts, and What Next?

Today we have just been planning drop in workshops along the theme of ‘Create & Bloom’. Planning is still in its early stages but we hope to run workshops at The Poly Falmouth around he 22nd and 23rd March 2018, which coincides with the Spring Festival. The workshops we envisage being free and are open to all who wish to participate.  You can drop in for an hour or two or stay all day!  Sarah and I will help you create exotic blooms out of recycled materials. The resulting pieces will show of perhaps a love of colour, interest in detail, liking for structure and above all else, your own take on beautiful and interesting blooms. All work we hope to be on public display either at the Poly or around Falmouth. Once all is finalised we will publish on and on our soon to be released website, No doubt the Poly Falmouth will also advertise.

Sitting in our chilly office space we got really excited about spring and the colour and shapes it brings. We started researching flower names and then translations into Cornish, bleujen an gog is bluebell; bleujen tulyfant is tulip and the Cornish for flower is flour!

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Falmouth Poly Library, great space.


Just visited Falmouth Poly to look at the lovely new library / studio space. Its bigger than I remembered and is just perfect for running our courses in. High ceilings, shelves of books and bundles of atmosphere – such a fabulous environment to occupy and explore your own arts practice. Inspired immediately by the bookcase housing so much history about the place.  Met the lovely Mawgan who is responsible for marketing and working with people such as us, Aspire Arts. Looking forward to our workshops where we will draw in new ways, develop ideas and make discoveries.

This space is made to be used and we are excited about it becoming a hub of artistic activity in the spring and summer months, starting in 2018. Couldn’t help myself had to move the chairs around to understand and conceive ideas as to how we might move and work in the space. Actually I just like it as SPACE!