Tuesday, 30 December 2014

We Are Here Already – Norwich 20 Group at The Forum, Norwich – January 12-23

Norwich 20 Group’s (N20G) first exhibition of 2015, WE ARE HERE ALREADY, at The Forum in Norwich, from January 12 to 23, features more than 60 members of the group, which celebrated its 70th anniversary in 2014. Visitors to the exhibition will be able to meet N20G members every day from 10am to 6pm.

The exhibition’s title, WE ARE HERE ALREADY, is taken from a work by the late David Holgate, former Chairman of N20G, who sadly passed away in 2014.  We are here already is coloured letter carving on slate. The work will be at the heart of The Forum exhibition, as a tribute to David.

David Holgate, coloured letter carving on slate
David Holgate was N20G Chairman in 2007 and set up the group’s licentiate scheme. Every year, up to four graduates from Norwich University of the Arts are invited to become licentiate members, and exhibit with the group for 12 months, after which they are eligible to be elected as full members.  Six former licentiates will be exhibiting at The Forum: Linda Chapman, Emma Cracknell, Henry Jackson Newcomb, Rebecca Kemp, Andy Reeve and Laura Such and three current licentiates, Anthony George, Davide Lakshmanasamy and Helen Piffero.

I crave no other, nor no better man.(acrylic on canvas) by Linda Chapman,
illustrating Mariana's choice at the end of Shakespeare's Measure for Measure.
N20G is combining with Norfolk Contemporary Craft Society and Norwich Contemporary Art Society for the first time, to stage a David Holgate retrospective exhibition at The Hostry, Norwich Cathedral in December 2015. Two of David Holgate’s finest works, sculptures of Julian of Norwich and St Benedict, are located on the west front of the Cathedral.

Martin Battye, Chairman N20G said: “David Holgate was one of the most enthusiastic members of Norwich 20 Group, always encouraging and supportive. The licentiate scheme is his legacy to the group and it is very appropriate that the title of our first exhibition of 2015 is a tribute to the man and his work. We will also miss his musical talent; his jazz trio with David on double bass, played for many years at our private view evenings.”    

Selected N20G members are currently exhibiting at Mandell’s Gallery (until January 10).  Work from past and current N20G members is included in Modern Art in Norwich, an exhibition at the Timothy Gurney Gallery, Norwich Castle Museum & Art Gallery, which runs until May. N20G is also planning an exhibition of large works in The Undercroft (below Norwich Memorial Gardens) in June.

Norwich 20 Group
N20G was founded by Walter Thomas Watling, art master at CNS, supported by Aileen Law, art teacher at Blyth School and 12 other local artists.  Stimulated by contemporary art movements, they wanted to raise standards of local professional art to something worthy of Norfolk’s artistic history.

N20G now has more than 80 members from across Norfolk.  All aspects of the practice of contemporary fine art are represented, sculpture, print, photography, painting, digital media and installations.

Over the years N20G has included nationally known artists, for example, Michael Andrews, Bernard Reynolds, Edward Barker, Leslie Davenport, Mary Newcomb, Jeffery Camp RA, and Cavendish Morton. Many current and past members have received patronage, exhibited at the Royal Academy Summer Exhibition and Galleries in East Anglia, London and internationally, with works in both private and public collections. Some have received prestigious awards, including election to the Royal Academy.

N20G has strong links with Norwich's twin cities and has held joint exhibitions with Novi Sad, Rouen, Koblenz and El Viejo.