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ART FIX: Coffee with a side of creativity

ART FIX: Coffee with a side of creativity

Friday 29 January 2021

ART FIX: Coffee with a side of creativity

With local galleries currently closed, a local collective has teamed up with a St. Brelade café to put the work of its artists on display.

Every Friday, Express presents a selection of online and offline exhibitions, performances, workshops, events and other historic and creative content to help islanders get their weekly dose of culture.

Here's this week's offering...

Local artists find 'Common Ground'


Pictured: Kirsty Gracia is one of the four artists exhibiting her work this month.

Local artistic collective RampArts Jersey has teamed up with Red Houses-based café Common Ground for a new initiative that will bring art and coffee together.

Founded in 2015, RampArts provides free artist networking and collaborative opportunities to local creatives.

As part of the ‘Revolving Wall' initiative, the work of artists from the collective will be on display at the café, with the selection changing every month.

Four of the collective's newest members are now exhibiting - Kirsty Gracia, Jacques le Breton, Jonny Swift and Martyn Saralis - until the end of February. 

The theme is local beauty, interpreted and expressed in each of their unique styles.


Pictured: Jacques Le Breton said it feels good to be showing work again "after a year of cancelled plans and missed opportunities". 

“After a year of cancelled plans and missed opportunities, it feels good to be showing work again,” Jacques said. “Making art has been a lifeline for me and many others during the pandemic. It’s a form of escapism that always succeeds in restoring my inner peace and helps to make sense of this beautifully mad world we all share." 

Jonny also welcomed the initiative saying it is brilliant to see “the local community coming together to support each other”.  “Ramparts is a great platform for artists to get their work out and i’m excited to be a part of that!”

Martyn Saralis, who has always enjoyed sketching doodles, started painting on pebbles in March last year.

“I am extremely excited to be part of an exhibition and am humbled by all the interest and support in my pebbles,” he said.

Making a scene


While its doors remain closed, Jersey Arts Centre has commissioned a new online writing project, asking three local writers to create five scenes each, all with different themes.

They are sharing a different scene every day on their site, in the hope to inspire everyone’s “creative and dramatic curiosities”.  

Once restrictions are lifted, it is hoped the sketches will be performed live at the Arts Centre’s Benjamin Meaker Stage.

Playwright, freelance writer and poet Martha MacDonald, has so far written scenes from a casting agency and a hiding place.

Colin Scott, who trained as an actor in Glasgow and Paris before switching to writing, was inspired by Scotland to write two of his scenes, with a third one focusing on an artist’s studio.

Meanwhile, Andrew Davey, an amateur actor who in recent years has written short plays for Plays Rough and the Jersey Festival of Words, wrote a scene from a workplace and one from a laboratory.

Faces behind the historic finds

Jersey Heritage has recently been celebrating the people who helped discover and excavate the Ice Age archaeology at La Cotte de St. Brelade as part of a week-long focus on the island's Ice Age history.

The first discoveries were made at the ancient site in 1881 and have carried on through generations of archaeologists to the present day, with over 200,000 stone tools (the largest collection from a single site), the bones of Ice Age megafauna, as well as the only Late Neanderthal human fossils in the British Isles found on the site.

It also released a film featuring Olga Finch, Jersey Heritage's Curator of Archaeology, and Georgia Robinson, the Historic Environment and Finds Officer, about some of the Ice Age artefacts, records and drawings in their collection.

During the week, two online talks also took place. Dr Matt Pope focused on Jersey’s record, why it is so exceptional and discussed future discoveries as well as what we are still to learn about the Island’s deep Ice Age past. 

Meanwhile, Dr Chantal Conneller of Newcastle University discussed the engraved schist plaquettes – said to be the earliest art in the British Isles - that were recovered from Les Varines and the analysis that was done using scientific methods to explore the production of designs, and use and deposition of the stones.

Missed last week's Art Fix? Catch up by clicking HERE.

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