The Turnpike Gallery, Leigh
1st April – 11 June 2021
Tuesday – Saturday 10:00-4:00
Drawn in is an exhibition celebrating 50 years of wonderful art at The Turnpike gallery in Leigh. A show of drawings and works on paper, showcasing works by 50 artists including those who have exhibited there previously, are based in the north-west who have a connection to the Turnpike. Artists include Henry Moore, Lowry, Tania Kovats, Layla Curtis, Tony Bevan, Halima Cassell, Susie MacMurray, Naomi Kendrick, Masakatsu Kondo, Glenys Johnson, Suki Chan and Jill Randall.
I’ll be exhibiting one of my One Minute works on paper in this exhibition, and as part of my involvement I thought I’d reflect on my own connection to the Turnpike Gallery. After I graduated in 2003, my second job as an artist was at the Turnpike Gallery. I’d seen promotion for the Art Factory exhibition, and my degree-show work of an office chair fitted with pens to draw on the floor seemed like it was a potential match for a show about using experimental processes for drawing. I think I got in touch with Martyn Lucas and his team after being encouraged by a mentor, and ended up leading some workshops in the gallery creating drawings using the movement of the office chair participants’ wheelchairs and probably some other processes. I went on to devise a number of workshops to connect to the Turnpike’s programme and that early career support was so valuable in building the practice I have today. The drive to bring quality arts programming to places outside of cities like Leigh and my base in St Helens, developing a process-based artistic practice with other people and using the platforms I have to support other artists, are all things that I can trace back to my experiences at the Turnpike in the early-mid 2000s.