Tuesday, 31 March 2009

Last Udders at the Bar!!

"Nighthawks (1942) is a painting by Edward Hopper that portrays people sitting in a downtown diner late at night. It is not only Hopper's most famous painting, but also one of the most recognizable in American art."

(citedWikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nighthawks)

Our very own artist Caroline Shotton has used this as inspiration for one of her most recent limited editions 'Last Udders at the Bar'. The location has changed from 'Phillies' to the appropriately named 'Pat's', the cows sit sipping milkshakes and a subtle cow print adorns the windows nearby and the panels of the diner. This piece has been produced as a boxed canvas of 27.5" x 44" and is priced at £575, a cleverly modern tribute to Hopper's masterpiece.

Peter Smith Artist Appearance 14th March

Castle Galleries, Newcastle were delighted to host an exhibition of work by Peter Smith.

We welcomed Peter and his wife Jayne on the day with a beautiful collection of limited edition and original work. Peter brought with him a sneak preview of his new sculpture 'My First Love' which is available now to pre-order from the gallery.

The day was success with many new collectors turning out to meet Peter and hear about the inspiration for his impossimals.

We would like to thank Peter & Jayne for staying with us longer than expected on the day and we know that all of our collectors enjoyed the opportunity to meet this intreguing artist and were over the moon to leave with their chosen pieces so beautifully personally dedicated.

Anthony's Doing Something Funny For Money!!

Friday the 13th March! Eek, this date strikes fear into the hearts of many but for Anthony Dorman the reason was something much less superstitious.

89 miles on an exercise bike, in our halogen lit gallery window, in the centre of Newcastle upon Tyne. It would be tough, it would need determination and stamina, by the end of the day it would smell.

The only thing spurring him on was the desire to raise oodles of cash for Red Nose Day, such a worthy cause.

By the time the day came along Anthony had raised over £300 via http://www.myrednoseday.com/

His two weeks of training had consisted of evenings spent consistently glued to the exercise bike in preparation for his big day and the morning started steadily with Anthony cheerily smiling and waving at passers by. 35 miles down and the first break out of the way and the going was beginning to get a little tougher but Anthony never faltered, people came into the gallery for two reasons, to support Anthony by donating and then to poke fun at his pain.

With 20 miles to go Anthony began to smell pretty bad and his knees were taking a battering. He had been cycling solidly for approximately 5 hours and although he would only cycle for another hour or so to complete his mission each mile felt like a million. It was all the more sweeter to finish knowing that through friends of the gallery along with artists and staff from Castle Galleries and Washington Green, a whopping £554.40 was raised both through the website and on the day.

Anthony would like to thank everyone who helped him through not only the much important donations but also motivation and support.

Monday, 30 March 2009

North East Exhibition

On February 21st 2009 we hosted an exhibition of north east artists featuring the work of Alexander Millar, Jeff Rowland, Mark Grieves and Mackenzie Thorpe.

From working class "Gadgies" and romantic cityscapes to images based around music and love these artists use the North East within their work both obviously and subtly drawing from their heritage to create an fusion of timelessness and evocation of nostalgia.
We had on display some fabulous works from all of the artists including original oils - "Serenade" and "Imagine" - both published works by Mark.
We have a number of new published limited editions new this spring from Alex, Jeff, Mark & Mackenzie. Check the website for information or call us on 0191 233 2200.

Govinder Nazran 1964 - 2008 January 2009

We are deeply saddened to announce that one of country's most outstanding, award winning contemporary artists - Govinder Nazran - who enjoyed enormous success around the world, tragically died on Tuesday 30 December, after suffering a seizure on Christmas Eve.

Govinder's striking, naïve portrayal of the feline and canine form, married with strong oriental overtones, and rich texturing and layering, won him thousands of fans across the globe.

As Glyn Washington, managing director for Washington Green Fine Art Publishing, said: "2009 would have been our tenth anniversary of working with Govinder. It was a decade in which we enjoyed the most amazing and creative art from one of the most talented, gentle and innovative artists we have ever had the pleasure of working with. Ironically we were planning a major event during 2009 to celebrate this wonderful ten year collaboration. It has been said that 'It is often the brightest star that burns for the shortest time'... never has a truer word been spoken."

In 2004 Govinder became the 'Best Selling Published Artist' in the industry's Fine Art Trade Guild Awards and he enjoyed two sell-out tours in Japan where his work was highly revered. During his prolific ten years with Washington Green his work has been collected and admired by thousands of fans from all walks of life, including many well-known collectors world-wide. Unusually Govinder possessed the vision of both artist and creative director, as he innovated and developed the ideas for his ground breaking collections.

A naturally warm and witty man of enormous integrity, Govinder's shyness made it challenging for him to articulate his thoughts verbally. "My true personality reveals itself through my paintings," he once said. His cats and dogs reached far deeper than a cute, naïve cliché of a 'four legged friend' with many of his paintings dedicated to the fight between good and evil.

"I leave it to the individual to look at my paintings and choose what they would like to see, innocence or malevolence - the 'good' or the 'evil'. Above all else I am, and always will be, an eternal optimist. Optimism is one of the greatest gifts we possess and my paintings are from my soul."

Govinder often described his wife Sarah and daughter Eden as his "greatest inspiration" and his most "honest critics".

He will be sadly missed by all at Washington Green and no doubt by all who appreciated and loved his work the world over.

Sunday, 29 March 2009

NYC here we come!!

On 2nd January 2009 Anthony and Rachael travelled to New York to catch the end of the Christmas and New Year festivities.
We made it our mission to take in the wonderful sights that our cityscape artists Neil Dawson and Paul Kenton have previously imortalised in print.
The first is Manhattan Morning by Paul Kenton. The photograph above left is the image as seen in the flesh on Washington Street in Brooklyn, and right Paul's representation.

Neil Dawson's painting of the Empire State Building from the Top of the Rock is a stupendous view, the best in Manhattan. A 360 degree wonderment of NYC. As the sun sets this observation deck gives the best view of everything that the city has to offer especially its most renowned building. Our photograph is slightly blurry and although the time of day we went up gave beautifully hued images around the island, not quite what Neil has depicted in NYC Dreaming.
Our trip was amazing, we brought some fabulous snapshots back and in doing so have managed to supply these artists with some briliant photographs to work from, Neil in particular has liked what we've done and has requested use of some of our images, who knows, our own photos may one day be imortalised in print.
...watch this space!!

Thursday, 26 March 2009

Neil Dawson visits the gallery

Cityscape artist Neil Dawson joined us in the gallery on Saturday 13th of December with a collection of vibrant and energetic images of London and New York.

Visitors to the gallery were thrilled to see a fantastic collection of original and limited edition work including a specially commissioned original of Newcastle's famous Quay Side.

Although Jeff Rowland was not present the weather was a typically wet Newcastle rainy day, however the vibrancy of the work and warmth of Neil's personality brightened up our afternoon.

This beautiful work was a prelude to NY:LON Neil's latest collection which is currently on tour throughout the UK and on display in the gallery now.

Meet Rowley!

Rowley was born on the 4th July 2008. Her mummy was found by Jeff Rowland near his old studio, she was pregnant at the time and Jeff just couldn't see her on the streets. He took her home and a week later three little kittens were born.
Eight weeks later Rowley came to join the Dorman/Montgomery household. We decided to call her Rowley in honour of Jeff, without him there would be no Rowley!
Much to existing cat Snuggle's dismay Rowley decided to keep us and 9 months later they are co-habiting almost peacefully which is progress from the five days spent on top of the fridge in a huff when she first turned up,
Thank you Jeff. x

A Brief Encounter with Jeff Rowland October 2008

On Saturday 4th October Jeff Rowland joined us in the gallery to kickstart his first nation wide tour. Unveiling his new collection in his home town proved to be the start of a massively successful UK tour.

True to the imagery of Jeff's work it rained all day but the gallery remained a cozy, ambient haven for onlookers walking past who decided to come in and join us.

One of the highlights of the show was the beautiful original 'A Tree Grows in Brooklyn' which has recently been published as 'Bridge to Your Heart' in Jeff's newest collection in 'A Love Story', on display in the gallery now (March 2009).
"I like to let the viewer of the painting make their own mind up about what is happening with the characters in the composition."
Jeff Rowland

Monday, 23 March 2009

Castle Galleries Grand Opening September 2008

On September 20th 2008 Alexander Millar officially opened the new Castle Galleries in Newcastle city centre.

There was standing room only as collectors old and new queued to meet the man who depicts North Eastern nostalgia with such flare.

The day began with a leisurely champagne brunch at Alex's regular haunt 'Blakes', where he can often be found sitting sketching away the day. As the gallery began to fill up our collectors feasted on ham & peese pudding stotties, homemade meat and potato pie and washed it down with Newcastle Brown Ale as Alex's model Peter, dressed in full 'Gadgie get-up' gave everyone a demonstration of 'Gadgie' poses. Alex arrived to find a queue of people eagrely awaiting his arrival, including our very own Jeff Rowland who had also come out to support his friend for the day.

A beautiful selection of Alex's artwork adorned the walls, limited editions and sculptures alongside original pieces depicting his various styles; from small sketches of his lone character to large detailed oils of the North East from eras gone by.

The 'Gadgie' character often accompanied by his 'Gal', grandchild or ever loyal wee dog has become a nostalgic image that many are reluctant to let go of. Generations that remember days like these have passed their love and memories down through Alex's artwork to family and friends and now a new generation of collector has emerged.

So it was that the gallery burst at the seams with people of every age, clamouring for a word with Alex but also eagerly awaiting the announcement of the winners of our Art Competition in conjunction with St Thomas More RC High School, thus highlighting the importance of Art in school and inspiring the next generation of artists.

The day was a massive success, one we hope to repeate next year for our one year anniversary.

Art in Schools, July 2008.

HAVING just opened the doors to the general public (on Thursday 31 July, 2008), the brand new Castle Galleries Newcastle in Monument Mall has shown its commitment to creating a new generation of artists in the region with the launch of a major children’s art competition.
The competition has been launched in conjunction with St Thomas Moore RE High School (North Shields) to encourage the children in each year group to discover and appreciate the joy of painting and art. The initiative, which is the brainchild of Castle Galleries Newcastle, has received the personal backing of three of Newcastle’s most outstanding artists – including celebrity artist Alexander Millar, Mark Grieves and Jeff Rowland – all of whom are showcased in the new gallery in Monument Mall.
Millar, Grieves and Rowland visited St Thomas Moore before the end of term, to tell the pupils about their lives and careers as professional artists and inspire as many children as possible to take part in the art competition with their live painting demonstrations.
The three artists will judge the entries at the beginning of September and a winner from each year group will be announced on Saturday 20 September at Castle Galleries Newcastle (between 12-3pm).
The overall winner will be presented with a fabulous selection of art materials by TV artist Alexander Millar, whilst the winner of each year group will have their work professionally framed by Castle Galleries and the art will go on display to the public in the gallery from 20 September.
Self-taught artist Alexander Millar started working as a window cleaner before discovering his natural talent for painting. His infamous Newcastle ‘Gadgie’ originals are now fetching five figure sums amongst his growing legion of fans. He said: “There’s a whole world out there to explore and record as an artist and Castle Galleries wants to inspire and ignite children to pick up a pencil, crayon or paint brush and discover the joy of art. Not everyone can be a doctor or a lawyer and it’s great for children to know that if you practice long and hard enough, you can earn a good living as a successful artist and, most importantly, do something that you truly love doing.”
Cited from 'Whats On NE' August 4th 2008.

New Castle Galleries, July 08.

New Castle Galleries for Newcastle showcases region’s finest contemporary artists
THE UK’s most successful group of retail art galleries, Castle Galleries, has chosen Newcastle to open its flagship gallery, which will showcase the finest UK contemporary artists including the most outstanding talent in the North East.
Castle Galleries Newcastle (located in the prestigious Blackett Street side of Monument Mall, overlooking Grey’s Monument) will specialise in high quality, limited edition art and originals and will open in the heart of a city that has witnessed an arts and cultural renaissance, on Thursday 31st July.
The flagship gallery, which is the 27th in the dynamic group of Castle Galleries, will build its success on exhibiting high quality, cutting edge and regional talent, but in a trendy, accessible environment that will make art appealing to a whole new generation of the general public.
Some of the biggest regional names to provide an approachable bridge into the gallery will include celebrity artist Alexander Millar, Mark Grieves and Jeff Rowland. Alexander Millar’s famous Newcastle ‘Gadgies’ have established his reputation on the international stage and his rise from window cleaner to top artist saw him head up an ‘Apprentice-style’ search for an up-and-coming painter on BBC Look North last Autumn. Mark Grieves has created a big sensation with his highly original and brilliantly constructed, detailed studies of the piano keyboard, which dance to life with reflective light and his trademark ebony and ivory characters. Jeff Rowland, meanwhile, is the king of romance in the rain, with the meeting of a lone couple in a deserted street creating a cinematic drama to his popular work. Commenting on the opening of Castle Galleries Newcastle, gallery manager Anthony Dorman said: “With Newcastle already housing priceless art in our city centre art galleries and mass produced art and pop art in the multiple stores, Castle Galleries is filling an exciting gap in the art scene in Newcastle. A piece of research into the general public’s attitudes towards contemporary art last year, showed that over 30 per cent of people wouldn’t know where to start looking for art, with 13 per cent claiming to be ‘intimidated’ when it comes to buying art. Castle Galleries Newcastle has created a fun vibe that breaks down the traditional barriers and stigma associated with some high end galleries, whilst providing customers with a really high quality choice of contemporary, limited edition art from some of our greatest living artists.”
The owners of the successful Castle Galleries concept, Washington Green Fine Art Publishing, have chosen Newcastle to roll out its new cutting edge contemporary interior for the gallery, with stunning black and white schemes off-set by slate and oak floors.
Castle Galleries Newcastle will provide a warm welcome to its customers, with a free prize draw to win a stunning signed limited edition Alexander Millar print. All visitors have to do is pop into the gallery, fill in their contact details and post their entry into the free prize draw. The winner will be personally presented with their signed piece of art in the gallery by Alexander Millar this Autumn.
Cited from 'Whats OnNE' July 08th, 2008.

Saturday, 21 March 2009

The first Delivery - July 08

Making use of the empty space beside the gallery whilst final touches were made, we assessed our fabulous artwork. Planning our opening exhibition was very exciting, we looked at our artist's work with fresh eyes, imagining where we would hang pieces and place sculpture. We were anxious to be in and get going, little did we know the final push would be upon us sooner than we thought.

The Gallery Comes to Life - July 08.

After a number of months in pre-planning the gallery was finally taking shape. Panic stations manned ready for the final preparations for opening: the walls were covered the floor laid, the desk and wiring done. As the final touches were put to the shell that would become our day-time home we began checking off the list of things needed to bring this gallery to life: Computer, lights, storage, sofa, plinths, coffee machine. It was finally coming together.

About the Gallery

My photo
Castle Galleries, Newcastle opened on August 1st 2008. Specialising in contemporary fine art from some of the UK's most collectable artists. Displaying an ever changing collection from the porfolio of Washington Green Fine Art we aim to bring a vibrant selection of art to the North East. Showing a diverse range of original, limited edition prints and sculptures we aim to bring quality affordable art to the region. We host regular exhibitions and artist appearances throughout the year.