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Review: 'Extraordinary Sketchbooks' exhibition at the Mount House Gallery

The epithet in the title - ‘extraordinary’ - suggests something significantly beyond what one might expect to find in an artist’s sketchbook. That sketchbooks are wonderful things is beyond serious questioning, so I guess it’s a matter of definition.



The title of this engaging, rich exhibition at the Mount House Gallery is in fact taken from a book produced by one of the exhibitors – Extraordinary Sketchbooks’by Jane Stobart. Indeed, Jane’s skilful prints are the first pieces that begin this rich and varied journey through the work of the twelve artists included in the show.

 

Examples of completed pieces by each artist are displayed on the gallery walls, whilst the accompanying sketchbooks are housed in display cases and on wall-mounted boxes. Written information on each exhibitor’s work is readily available. 

All of this adds up to a thoughtful, inventively presented exhibition of which the College should be proud.

 

The opportunity to gain an insight into the working practices of visual artists, their thought processes, their particular way of translating what they observe is a rare treat.

 

Drawing is achievable by everyone. Sketchbooks are bound by no rules - they are personal documents. They are free from external assessment - they are ‘safe places’ where we can explore, dream, record – where the words ‘bad’ or ‘failure’ have no legitimacy. I would love to think that by visiting this exhibition, you might be prompted to begin a sketchbook or two of your own.

I challenge you – whether you see yourself as an ‘artist’ or not - not to find something in this exhibition that sparks your interest.

Further information can be found on the Marlborough College website or from the exhibition’s curator Jonathan Parnham: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

This exhibition at Mount House Gallery, Marlborough College (next to the Art School) is open until 25 February 2018, but closed between 10 and 18 February.  The Gallery is open Tuesdays to Sundays 2pm-5pm or by appointment - call 01672 892411.





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Christmas-Lights15-11-20097
Torch-2012-05-23093-
White-Horse
Sunset
Inquisitive-sheep-in-West-Overton
Musical-Time-Machine5
JazzFestSat572
Roving-Crows1
Scouting-for-Girls7
Snowy-High-Street
Ogbourne
Marlborough-under-snow-from-above---Pete-Davies
Brazier
Silbury-Sunset---10-06-08---07
TdB-Pewsey044
Remebrance-18-3
Landscape
Hares017cropped
Town-Hall-2011-05-0308-
D4S9273
George-Wilding-301
1stXV-and-others-with-Mayor
Marlborough-2013-04-18StPeters
Brooks-Williams1
MYFC005
Remebrance-18-1
Animals06
Big-Bull
CivicSelfie1
D4S0472
Tina-May5
Gordon-and-Sam
Duke-of-Kent086
Camilla-2012-10-19152
4MI-2013-11-28030
Sunset2
Civic-Service-18
IMG8472
Camilla-MSM
SBJ
Turin-Brakes6
Pete-Gage-Band1
IMG9097
ARKManton-2012-01-1449-
D812668
Remebrance-18-2
Mop-Fair---10-10-09---08
Bluebells-in-West-Woods-10-05-09---30