A local artist, who once sailed the Atlantic, is taking another leap of faith with her first ever solo show of wood, paper and magazines transformed with the help of raspberries, kale, fish sauce and coffee.
Every Friday, Express presents a selection of online and offline exhibitions, performances, workshops, events and other historic, creative and delicious content to help islanders get their weekly dose of culture.
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Pictured: Sue Kenny will be exhibiting for the first time at Greve de Lecq Barracks this weekend.
Sue Kenny has been creative since a young age, but up until recently, she had only been creating work for herself.
“When I was younger, I had a place at university to do fine art,” she explained. “Life took over and I ended up getting married when I was very young and having lots of children, and I had to work so although I have done previous pieces of art of the years, it was really for myself and hopefully it inspired the kids as well.”
In her work, Sue uses repurposed wood, paper and magazines which she dyes with the help of natural dyes such as fruits, including raspberries, blueberries, cherries and pomegranates and lots of vegetables, like beetroot, kale and cabbages but also different sort of vinegars, mustards, soya sauce, fish sauce and coffee.
“I have a friend who lives on a farm, and she has lots of sheep,” Sue explained. “I got lots of pointers from her because she dyes her wool and then she spins it, and makes all sorts of things.
“I am learning from experimenting myself , but I am also picking stuff up from other people. I am constantly learning and that’s the joy of it. It’s learning as I go along and being peaceful and calm and just open to ideas.”
Pictured: Sue uses natural dyes and repurposed wood as well as paper and magazines.
Sue loves playing with different textures and colours and experimenting with the dyes and the woods to obtain different results.
One of her pieces is made out solely out of girls’ magazines, which were donated to her and that she then folded into different shapes to make large structures.
“I really love shapes, so a lor of my work is in 3D,” she said.
Sue explained she has recently started devoting more time to her art and creative pieces as the timing felt right to do so.
“When I work it takes me to a very peaceful place,” she said. “The process is very joyful but also challenging.
“This is why the timing is right for me. I’ve got space in my head to allow the thought to come and go. If I am in a peaceful place, the thought comes to me, and I can develop that thought and that idea and not get frustrated by it and let it work its way through.”
Pictured: “When I work it takes me to a very peaceful place,” Sue said.
As she created more and more work, various people started telling Sue she should start thinking about selling them. She also caught the interest of local arts charity ArtHouse Jersey which is hosting her first ever exhibition at its headquarters in Greve de Lecq, this weekend (Saturday 5 and Sunday 6 February) between 10:00 and 17:00.
“I may be a private person, but I absolutely adore challenges. This a challenge for me but I have embraced it, like I have embraced everything I have done in my life," she explained.
“I sailed across the Atlantic when I was 30 with two of my children. It’s always been very inspirational for me. In that year I took off, we had gale force 10 but I think that opened my eyes to all the wonderful things that you see.
“I am grateful to all the people out there who push me from being private to a public person because that gives me the opportunity to take my work down a different route which I would not have done.”
Pictured: "This a challenge for me but I have embraced it, like I have embraced everything I have done in my life," Sue said about her first exhibition.
With the exhibition marking the beginning of her next adventure, Sue hopes her work will inspire others to not give up on life and “keep learning, growing, creating in all forms”.
“In this world which is very busy, we can also take time to just appreciate what is around us,” she added. “Lots of these pieces are all from repurposed materials, there is an history and rawness about the materials and I hope people will embrace that and walk away feeling happy.”
To mark its fifth anniversary, Jersey Recovery College, a charity which provides education and training opportunities to people experiencing mental health difficulties, has set itself the challenge to make 1,000 origami cranes and has reached out to islanders for their help in reaching the target.
"In Japan, legend has it that anyone who folds 1000 origami cranes will be granted a wish by the gods – such as happiness, or eternal good luck," the team said. "The crane has become a symbol of hope and healing during periods of periods of difficulty."At JRC, we gave out origami cranes at our launch event. Now that we approach our fifth birthday, we want to go bigger and better, to spread our message of hope and recovery across the island and celebrate our five years as an organization."
Islanders are invited to create their own crane at home and take a photo or video of their finished product. They should then upload on social media with the hashtag #1000craneschallenge and invite their friends to join the challenge.
Local arts collective RampArts will be hosting pop-up 'create a crane' workshops, with artists demonstrating how the cranes are made. The finished origami cranes will then be displayed by RampArts in an "almighty" installation, at Jersey Library just in time for celebrations.
Local artist Ali Robinson (Ali Artology), known for her detailed illustrations of local landmarks and wildlife, is presenting her first exhibition at the Link Gallery.
Open until 26 February, ‘Stones and Stars’ will feature never before seen watercolour llustrations as well as some of Ali’s paintings and drawings of Jersey archaeology and architecture.
Local arts collective RampArts is bringing a workshop series mixing poetry and illustration next month.
American poet Traci O'Dea will be teaming up with 10 local illustrators to help participants create their own poems while the artists will use their skills and styles to bring their words into the visual world.
The five workshops will be hosted at the Salvation Army between 18:00 and 19:00 from 2 March.
Participants will meet the illustrators at the third session on 23 March and work with them on the style and imagery. The final piece will be created during the last session on 6 April before being matted and framed. It will then be put on display at the Salvation Army Café.
There are only 10 spaces available for the workshop series and they can be booked online.
RampArts’ Founder, Heather Brown, said: “This RampArts project will be celebrated with an exclusive poetry reading evening and an exhibition launch of the illustrations created in the workshop, which will take place at the Salvation Army Cafe, at a date to be confirmed.
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