This September will be hosting an exhibition of artwork by prisoners and ex-offenders from HMP Leyhill Prison. Curated by Prodigal Arts  mentoring offenders and ex-offenders to find not only a new creativity, but a new life

Using different media and styles the artists were challenged to depict transformation and what change might look like when they are released, life as they knew it restored, hope and the future returned and a better or changed ‘person’ gets the opportunity to grow and have a new life.

Prodigal Arts is a charity that provides opportunities for talented prisoners and ex-offenders to produce and sell artwork created in their own voluntary time as part of their ongoing rehabilitation.  Prodigal Arts aim to bring transformation through art, making a positive contribution to society.

Their project is based in Bristol and works in the region. Artwork is produced for sale directly to the public and through commissions. The aim of Prodigal Arts is to help people in prison and post-release ‘unlock’ their creative potential, ‘setting free’ a positive sense of individual achievement and self-worth which aims to contribute to reducing the chances of re-offending.

All artwork on display is available to purchase, 5% go to Victim Support after cost of sales, then 60% goes back into Prodigal Arts to continue the work and 40% from each sale goes to the artist available on release, with released artists the percentage is reversed 60% the artist and 40% to Prodigal Arts.

Quotes from two of the artists:-

“Knowing that someone wants to buy my artwork has had a profound affect on my self esteem and has given me a new purpose when I’m released, particularly as I will be retired and in ill health. It has also given me a new found confidence to experiment with new ideas and mediums.” Artist Davey

“Attending the Prodigal Arts sessions has had a positive effect on my self-esteem, particularly when receiving feedback from people on my artwork which is usually positive and makes me feel like  I can actually do something well and worthwhile.” Artist John

More artwork from the exhibition will be displayed in the windows at gallery Room 212

The August exhibition, ‘Just a Something’ in our Downstairs Gallery, features 4 young Bristol artists. This image is by Sneak Pekoe

Curated by Ellen Taylor Kaye (our fabulous bar manager & silver jewellery designer), a small exhibition showcasing some of Bristols finest talent.

4 artists, 4 different mediums and one month of artistic beauty.

Georgina Murray
Sophie FIlomena
Mark OB Pritchard
Sneak Pekoe

Clare Hooper July – August 2019

This summer we have an explosion of colour on our featured artist Clare Hooper

June Exhibition – Wild Meadow Paintings by Mary Price

Bristol artist Mary Price is showing a selection of her original acrylic and mixed media intuitive paintings inspired by the natural world at Alchemy 198 during the month of May & June.

The paintings include a series of nature and meadow inspired works created by layering vibrant acrylic colours to produce imaginary abstract flowers that burst with spring time vibes.

The exhibition also includes one of Mary’s Frida Kahlo paintings that she included because it worked with the mix of other paintings in the show. The painting has a floral theme as it is inspired by the Frida Kahlo quotation, ‘I paint flowers so they will not die.’

Describing her inspiration Mary said, ‘I love to record what I see in the natural world by sketching, painting and taking photography from real life  and then using this source material to  integrate with memory and imagination to make my paintings. I translate imagery onto canvas or paper using intuitive processes starting with creative mark making and building a backdrop of colours. As an intuitive painter I often set off without a clear plan as this frees up the painting process and enables happy accidents to happen along the way.

“I gradually  start to pick out images from memory as thoughts emerge on the canvas or paper. It can be quite a hap hazard way of working but I love the alchemy when the magic happens and a mess of marks slowly builds into something that for me has a beauty and is expressive of how a memory or a landscape makes me feel.”

Mary works in a she shed studio in her garden that has become her biggest painting yet. She posts progress and inspiration  on Instagram almost daily underheat has become her artist brand name – artistintheshed.

Visit the Room 212 website for more images and to order prints by Mary Price

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/artistintheshed/