Our third year in review
What a busy year! We started our third year working with Canadian-born artist Mark Karasick, helping him with his piece for the Force of Nature exhibition at Mile End Arts Pavillion in London. We’ve continued to work with Mark since. He has an exciting year-long project in the works leading to a show in Europe, details to be announced. (If you’re interested in sponsoring or supporting this ambitious project please get in contact for more information – it will most certainly be worth it.)
Early on in our third year we helped photographer Tim Gander create a series of fine art prints for ROUTES drop-in centre fundraising exhibition. Tim is now working on a project about the Saxonvale site in Frome.
In May our framing and admin assistant, Joe joined the team. Joe’s helped us achieve Living Wage Employer status, trademarked our brand, and he’s been learning the fine craft of hand-finishing bespoke frames.
In August we worked with Professor Anita Taylor to create 8 huge frames for her Drawn exhibition in South Shields that has now moved to the Young Gallery in Salisbury. A total of 176m of wood, 133 square meters of sheet material (acrylic, foam board, backing etc), 72m of 25mm spacer. Counting each prep, paint and wax coat I’ve covered the equivalent of 576m of wood. All in 8 frames.
We worked with Christoper Bucklow in the run-up to his big retrospective show at Southampton City Art Gallery. Jennifer typeset and designed three books for the exhibition and we made three frames for his work.
Next came a series of frames for Nicky Knowles – Nicky had a solo show at Kobi & Teal in Frome and created a new series of drawings that we framed for her.
We helped Leslie Glenn Damhus make a selection of fine art prints of her oil paintings to go into a beautiful lacquered portfolio that she presented to the RWA. She (and Nicky Knowles) were later elected to become RWA academicians.
September was busy with SAW open studios, and at the beginning of October we helped artist Miriam Sheppard and photographer Simon Richardson with their show Dawn Dusk at 44AD in Bath. We made prints, framed all the work, curated it and designed the visual identity and poster.
We framed most of the work at Geoff Stainthorp’s solo show at White Moose gallery in Barnstaple in October.
November also saw us framing 29 works for Phyllis Wolff’s show at the Slade Centre in Gillingham, Dorset. Kobi&Teal’s Mixing Signals included several pieces framed by us, including an experimental split frame for Jenny NR Smith.
Artist Matt Straker had a print show on at the Cheese & Grain throughout November. We scanned his paintings and made fine art prints for him. They sold well and got many positive comments.
The end of the month we were working with Mark Karasick again designing a Perspex frame made for one of his iconic encaustic wax tile pieces.
Our new framemaker, Rhys, joined us at the end of November. The first big job was helping painter Gary Cook make a stack of FSC ash frames that Gary then took back to his studio to assemble himself. The work went into Gary’s solo show at Springhead in Fontmell Magna and the FSC ash framed pieces practically sold out on the opening night.
We’d been framing Jamie Gallagher’s work throughout our third year, using a custom oak moulding that really sets his contemporary paintings off well. Another regular client in our third year was illustrator Tom Charlesworth who’s amazing fantasy-inspired prints are selling well from his etsy and market stalls.
At the end of 2017 we expanded into a second space that houses our office and graphic design department, up in the main Silk Mill studio complex. Meanwhile we began a program of refurbishments to improve our workflow in the workshop. These are ongoing – we hope to get them completed in the next month or so. A big factor is getting in new worktops from Frome-based plastics recycling company Protomax. The worktops will be 80% recycled plastic.
At the close of our third year we printed and framed a piece for Hauser & Wirth’s The Land We Live In – The Land We Left Behind exhibition. Another batch of FSC frames have been made for Garry Cook’s 2nd sell-out show, and we have another Hauser & Wirth order to complete.
And that’s just a selection of what we got up to in Year 3! All are welcome to join us for our third birthday celebrations on April 1st 10am-3pm at our workshop.