It’s well known (by me, at least) that Wigan is something of a cultural black hole. It’s a great town for sport but the Local Authority have no real interest in art and culture (unlike Wakefield, a very similar town over the other side of the Pennines). They closed the only gallery in town a few years ago.So I was surprised to pick up a leaflet advertising and Arts Festival in Wigan. Turns out that it was organised by a local Arts group based at the Old Courts building at the back of the Parish Church. One of the things they’d organised was an exhibition of works by local artists, so last Saturday I popped in to take a look.
It wasn’t a large exhibition, and I wouldn’t say that any of the works were ground-breaking, but there were a number of pictures I liked.
This painting by Mike Fahey – Mill Girl Wallgate 1907 – referenced the town’s history as a centre of cotton production. I like the way he’s superimposed his figure and cotton spinning machinery on top of a map of the town.
This mixed media abstract landscape by Sharon Barnes – Sylvan Twilight – is based on the coast at Sefton (Formby and Southport). I like the way she has incorporated found objects and the colours are very atmospheric, suggesting a stormy afternoon.
This Untitled work by Joyce Carlton is made from folded paper. The individual pieces are perhaps a little slim to represent books. But they rather reminded me of my collection of vinyl record or, possibly, CDs.
A sample of other works on display
Crompton’s Nog and acrylic painting by David Stanley
Shrinkining Shelters – Tripytch by Georgia Marlowe
Over mountain and dark sea, the sun made our wings bronze by Elaine Philips
I enjoyed the exhibition and hope the Old Courts group can build on their efforts. Good luck to them!