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Happy Friday! What a beautiful week it’s been! Fingers crossed we have another week like this…

Classes are running at Art in the Park this week – come see the lovely Burgess Park in this gorgeous weather and get creative and learn some new skills while you’re here. Monday evening is woodcarving with Bill Hudson, open to all abilities. Thursday is pottery with Leyla Folwell, with classes running all afternoon and evening to suit any age and ability. Find out more and book your place here.

There’s plenty to do all around London this week. Ballgowns: British Glamour Since 1950 has recently opened at the Victoria and Albert Museum. A beautiful exhibition held in the newly renovated fashion galleries.

The new cartography exhibition, Mind the Map, at the London Transport Museum looks very interesting. The collection of London transport maps from the last 100 years explore themes of journey, identity and publicity.

Have you seen the art exhibition at Tower Bridge? OPEN is a partnership between Southwark Arts Forum and Tower Bridge, showcasing emerging art and artists in this fantastic space. Art in the Park artist Simon Veis is currently showing some of his work here.

Don’t forget, this weekend is your last chance to catch the great Lucian Freud exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery!

Looking for a great craft project to brighten up your home? I love this wonderful and colourful weekend project from flax & twine – an hand-woven rug, made with a hula hoop!

And who else needs a cool, refreshing drink in this weather? This lavender lemonade looks delicious!

Have a wonderful and sunny week everyone!

Art in the Park artists Andrea Sinclair and Leyla Folwell have been making some stunning new tiles for the bathroom. Using the shapes and textures of nature, oxides for colour and a simple glaze they have created some beautiful and unique tiles for our studio. Can’t wait to see them on the walls!

Happy Monday! Are you doing anything nice this week?

It’s a full week of workshops at Art in the Park. Bill’s woodcarving classes continue tonight – learn to carve wood and create your own work of art or sculpture. On Tuesday Andrea will be running a pewter casting class, teaching the ancient art of pewter to make stunning pieces of jewellery. Thursdays is pottery with Leyla, with classes running throughout the afternoon and evening for children, beginners and advanced students. And this Saturday is the first of two mosaics workshops – learn how to make beautiful mosaics and use it to create art or decorate your own furniture, mirrors and picture frames.

There is a beautiful and moving exhibition currently running at the Brunei Gallery at the University of London. ‘One Thousand Pot, One Thousand Thoughts’  is
 an installation by artist and ceramicist Yozo Hirayama commemorating the victims of the Tohoku earthquake and Tsunami of
 11th
 March
 2011. Hirayama handcrafted one thousands pots to stands 
as 
a 
marker 
and 
a memory 
of those
 who
’s lives were taken in the disaster.

The first UK solo show of the New York crochet artist Olek continues this week at Tony’s Gallery. In ‘I do not expect to be a mother but I do expect to die alone’ Olek covers a gallery space and all the object within it in colourful crochet. A strange and stunning sight to behold.

If you’re feeling inspired by Olek’s exhibition to pick up a crochet hook, how about this mobius strip cowl – a mathematical scarf with only one side!

And don’t forget Mother’s Day this Sunday! There are two great workshops running which would make a great Mother’s Day treat. The Forge is holding Mother’s Day Ruin, a gin making workshop with a talk, gin making workshops and cocktails – sounds like great fun! For more conservative mothers, the Idler Academy is running a Cooking with Flowers Tea Time Event, tastings and demonstrations and the chance to learn recipes for Rose Cream Scones, Lavender Biscuits and Flower-infused cordials… Yum!

Whatever you do this weekend have a great time, and if you’re doing anything exciting, please share it with us!

In a new series of posts Art in the Park artists are going to be sharing some of the things which have been inspiring them recently and some of the sights and sounds getting them into a creative move. The first post of inspirations comes from our ceramicist Leyla Folwell.

I am seeing…… Must take this opportunity to say that TV is the ruination of society, throw it away – you will have better relationships.  TED talks are my favorite research media at the moment. Check this video out!

I am reading…… Eat,Pray,Love by Elizabeth Gilbert.  It s beautiful, reminded me of my time in India and it also reminded me to just ask the Universe for help instead of trying to do it all on your own.  It works you know ; )

I am visiting…… I saw Grayson Perry exhibition at the British Museum.  I really loved it, brilliant demonstration of what inspires and artist and how that can manifest.  I enjoyed his playfulness, a pleasant release…  I can be too intense about my topics for my work. 

Very excited about seeing Picasso and David Hockney!

I am thinking about….. The Sketchbook Project

My chosen theme is Time & Distance,  I am doing a journey from home on the 188 bus to the British Museum (a bit Perry inspired) it is studies of people and artifacts and photographic record of the roads.  It s an exploration of reincarnated souls I think….

I am cooking…… Oh, I am not really I am living off soup, Cynthia’s rice & peas and Berroca vitamins! – I am usually better than this but just need things to warm up a bit so I can feel inspired again.

I am hearing…… My brother had a sort out in my parents roof and gave me my old cassette tapes – when I am driving I am enjoying the Scorpions and Judas Priest!!!! – I was a rebel lol!! As I type I am listening to Cat Stevens…. (retired rebel)

I am making…… Andrea http://www.artinthepark.co.uk/andrea-sinclair.html and I are making tiles for the Art in the Park bathroom.  I love working with other artists, it gets lonely working on your own all the time…. ahhhhhh………… he he ; ) tough life!

We had such a wonderful day on Sunday at our Art Extravaganza. As part of The Big Draw and Flock Project over 100 people visited Art in the Park to support the national campaign for drawing and explore the theme of migration. Visitors were invited to produce their own unique works of art on two of Bill Hudson’s fantastic paint machines and learn to throw a pot on the wheel in our pottery workshop.

Taking inspiration from the birds found in Burgess Park – pigeons, crows, herons, swans, woodpeckers and more! – visitors drew and cut out a silhouette of a bird of their choice. They then had the chance to paint it using one of the paint machines – either squirting paint at it from a distance, or operating a paintbrush held on the end of a 6 foot arm using pulleys and levers! Great fun!

The lovely Leyla, Art in the Park’s resident ceramicist, was also running a free workshop where people could learn to throw a pot on the wheel, and then decorate it with marks and stamps.

It was a great day and so many beautiful pots and colourful birds were made. The birds have been fixed to postcards and sent on a flight to the Ullapool, before they continue their migration to the Outer Hebrides!

More photos of the event to follow….!