Two distant views

Picture Credit: CultureArk

“The sea influences everything because it is so much part of our lives here on Sherkin Island. The sight and sound of the sea is with me at all times. The memory, essence and unpredictability of the sea is the starting place for my work but it’s not just about the sea but more about life and mood and place, interpreting memories and relating to different emotions and island moments in my life.” Majella O’ Neill Collins

I have been drawn out of blogging hibernation. So, with a big yawn and a stretch, I bring you a story from Sherkin Island.

Two island artists, Jo Ashby and Majella O’Neill Collins, will hold a joint exhibition at the RBSA (Royal Society of Birmingham Artists) in Birmingham from 12th to the 24th June 2017.

The title of the exhibition is ‘Two Distant Views’ and is the third in a series of two person shows by the two artists who share a love of Sherkin Island and the West Cork coastline. The fourth show will be held on Sherkin from the 6th -25th August 2017.

The work will show the two artists’ joint preoccupation with the sea, from looking down on the shoreline and across the surface of the water to studies of what lies beneath the water and views out to the horizon.

Sherkin Island artist, Majella O’Neill Collins, works mainly in oils, and her approach is intuitive and expressive.

Jo works mainly in acrylics and her approach to painting the sea is underpinned by observation and drawing.

Originally from Birmingham, and now dividing her time between London and Sherkin Island, Jo Ashby has a long-standing connection with the RBSA and is an elected Associate Member of the society.

What is lovely is that I spent 19 years living in Birmingham and am also a member of the RBSA. I have been beating the drum for Sherkin Island as ‘Island of the Arts’ for some time now so I am very excited to be supporting this event with some publicity to help put Sherkin Islands’ creative community on the map. Sherkin goes to Birmingham!

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“I sit and watch the patterns of the tides and changing light. The sea is constantly moving and changing so drawing is important so that I get an understanding of that. My paintings aren’t topographical though but are more the distillation of repeated observation of island views and landscapes I know and love so well. There are repeated motifs in my work as I try to capture the many different lights and moods.” Jo Ashby

If there are any Midlands-based bloggers who would like a closer look at the island and the ever-changing seascapes of Roaring Water Bay, do go along to this exhibition.