Portrayed! 25 Years of Inspiring Women‏

The Lots Road Group, together with the International Women’s Forum UK (IWF UK) opened their annual exhibition at The Chelsea Town Hall last week with a packed Private View and a fabulous video introduction by esteemed portrait artist, Daphne Todd, a real honour for the group.

The Lots Road Group teamed up with IWF UK on its 25th Anniversary to produce a portrait exhibition of 16 of its most inspiring women – its four founders and first 12 chairs.

IWF UK is part of the International Women’s Forum (IWF), an organisation which advances leadership across careers, cultures and continents by connecting the world’s most pre-eminent women of significant and diverse achievement.

With over 5,000 women leaders across six continents and 33 nations, the IWF has unprecedented global reach to exchange ideas, learn and inspire, and promote better leadership for a changing world.

The portraits have been created by artists in the Lots Road Group – artists who all studied at The Heatherley School of Fine Art in Chelsea, one of the few art colleges that focus purely on portraiture, figurative painting and sculpture.

Together the group has captured in oils, acrylics, pastel, and print the 16 women who founded or chaired IWF UK during its first 25 years.

Susan Young, who chaired the organisation during its 25th year and championed the initiative said:

I am delighted to embark on this special collaboration with the Lots Road Group. This is a wonderful opportunity to capture the essence of our leaders on canvas and represent inspiring leadership in an innovative medium.

This is the Lots Road Group’s second major project. Last year, in the run up to Mother’s Day, the group mounted a portrait exhibition celebrating motherhood.

This year’s exhibition of IWF UK’s leaders at The Chelsea Gallery runs until Sunday 7 June 2015.

The related catalogue is available on line and on sale at the exhibition, and contains brief biographical information about each of the artists and sitters, as well as a brief account of what it was like for each artist to portray the women who provided the inspiration for these portraits.

The Lots Road Group blog contains interesting behind-the-scenes pictures and a video of the exhibition hang.

The Chelsea Gallery:
Chelsea Library
Chelsea Old Town Hall
King’s Road
London SW3 5EZ

Related links

The Lots Road Group are:

 

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Society of Women Artists 153rd Annual London Exhibition 2014

Society of Women Artists (SWA) logoThursday 26 June to Saturday 5 July
(closes 3.00 pm on the last day)
Mall Galleries, The Mall, London SW1

Private view: Wednesday 25th June 10.00 am – 8.00 pm
11.00 am – official opening and presentation of Awards

I’m delighted to again have work accepted for the Society of Women Artists annual exhibition this year, and even more excited to have been made an Associate member. This follows having works accepted over the past few years, and this year having six works accepted (the maximum of four to be hung and two accepted but not hung).

For an invitation to the private view and free entry throughout the duration of the show, please visit my website at www.sharonlow.com or send an email to exhibitions@sharonlow.com

I hope to see you there there!

About the Society of Women Artists (SWA)

SWA Flyer 2014Originally founded as the Society of Female Artists (SFA), this unique group has held an annual London exhibition of the work of women artists ever since 1857.

During the mid-nineteenth century, women were not considered serious contributors to the field of art and they had great difficulty in obtaining any public showing.

At the first exhibition of the SFA, 149 women showed 358 works. It is a reflection of the times that some of the artists hid their true identities for fear of social recrimination.

At this time the art world was dominated by the Royal Academy which, when founded in 1768, had just two women among the founders; there were no other women Royal Academicians for over 150 years, until Annie Swynnerton SWA (a member since 1889) was elected as an Associate in 1922.

Some of the most noted artists of the time were attracted to the Society: when Lady Elizabeth Butler’s “The Roll Call” was displayed at the Royal Academy in 1874, even Ruskin, with his peculiar views of femininity, revised his opinion that “no woman could paint”.

The SFA was involved in education for women artists: female artists were effectively excluded by the mores of the time from professional training – even for those who gained a place at art school, the model in the women’s class would be decorously draped on grounds of propriety.

As access to professional training increased, the Society’s exhibitions attained higher standards, and a name change came in 1869 to the Society of Lady Artists. The mid-Victorian persona was discarded in the last year of the century, and the twentieth century was embraced by the Society with the new name: The Society of Women Artists.

Among its members the Society has had many famous artists: Dame Laura Knight, the first woman Royal Academician for over 160 years, was elected President of the SWA in 1932;  Mabel Lucy Atwell, the world-famous illustrator, was also a member. Current members include Daphne Todd OBE, the first woman President of the Royal Portrait Society; June Mendoza OBE, the well-known portraitist June Mendoza; the late Suzanne Lucas, Past President of both the Society of Botanical Artists and the Royal Miniature Society (in 1980 was elected as the first woman president of a Royal Society); and Philomena Davis, elected first woman President of the Royal Society of British Sculptors in 1990.

The Society has enjoyed Royal patronage since 1865 and the current patron is HRH Princess Michael of Kent. The current President is Sue Jelley.

Royal Society of Portrait Painters 2014

I was just in time to catch the recent Royal Society of Portrait Painters Annual Exhibition 2014 at the Mall Galleries before it ended. As expected, I was impressed by the high calibre of all the artists.

I was particularly looking forward to seeing paintings by artists and friends I admire, such as Sarah Jane Moon, Bulldog Bursary Prizewinner 2013-2014, with her portrait of Dr Laura Bridgeman and Flora Watson, who was Winner of The £3,000 de László  Foundation Award for artists 35 years and under with “Studio 26”.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Also much anticipated were paintings by Hero Johnson and Ian Rowlands, with their portraits of each other that were also featured in recent editions of the Artists and Illustrators magazine; and a host of others, some of whom I’ve pasted images from below and which can still be viewed on the Heatherley School of Art blog.

Father and Daughter Exhibition

Katherine Firth and Bill Everett in a father and daughter exhibition in Cambridge April 2014

Katherine Firth and Bill Everett in a father and daughter exhibition in Cambridge April 2014

Katherine Firth and Bill Everett in a father and daughter exhibition in Cambridge April 2014

Katherine Firth and Bill Everett in a father and daughter exhibition in Cambridge April 2014

Katherine Firth, one of the Lots Road Group of artists, is exhibiting alongside her father, artist Bill Everett, in Cambridge during the weekend of 26th and 27th April 2014.

For details please email katherinemfirth@me.com

£500 raised for Oxfam Mother Appeal

We are very proud that The Lots Road Group, together with public support, have raised £250 for the Oxfam Mother Appeal – and which the government will double to £500!

This total of £250 came from a combination of a percentage book sales at the exhibition plus postcard sales and other donations. Many thanks for to everyone who came along and gave such generous support.

If you would like to find out more about where your money is going and what it will do, please visit the Oxfam Mother Appeal.

VPROI Tim Benson, reviews the Motherhood Exhibition

Vice President of the Royal Society of Oil Painters, Tim Benson review Motherhood Exhibition

Vice President of the Royal Society of Oil Painters, Tim Benson review Motherhood Exhibition

Vice President of the Royal Society of Oil Painters, Tim Benson, reviews the Lots Road Group’s Motherhood Exhibition opening this week at the  Chelsea Old Town Hall in London.

He said of the group:

“They’ve come to a point now where they’ve found their language.. they are really very talented and it’s been a pleasure to know them.”

Watch the video in two parts (also available on YouTube)

Part 1: Martin Borough, Stella Tooth, Elizabeth Shields, Sarah Reynolds, Nichola Collins, Colleen Quill, Mark Stevenson, Christine Klein, Viviana Macchi, Sarah Moon

Part 2: Sharon Low, Alla Broeksmit, Lucinda Rendall, Hilary Puxley, Katherine Firth, Sarah Richardson