Very exciting to read a first review following a successful first northern solo exhibition. So interesting to read someone else writing about the work. So happy the pieces were understood and the concept achieved its aim. Let’s hope it is the start of many. Find the link below and words from it underneath


Review: Souls by Sam Shendi

Sam Shendi, whose current show Souls is residing at the FYC gallery as part of the Venn Projects curatorial steering, is a mass of contradictions. The contradictory aspect of the show is in fact is a key to its success.

The bright and, at first viewing, superficial work is in fact full of depth and the directness of the primary colours have a resonance beyond their initial impact. A series of compacted metal may be a mundane media yet it has an allure beyond its material.

The award winning sculptor, Shendi, creates in Souls a series of oblong sculptures from crushed metal which are then painted vivid eye-blasting colours. It’s a very attractive series of work on a purely visual level, but it is when one spends a little time with the sculptures that the real strength of the works surface.

Within the formal setting of the FYC’s white cube gallery space Shendi’s works offer a reflective experience that once entered into allows the inner tales of the sculptures to speak. The harsh lines and jagged metal cube-like shapes start to morph into forms within the folds of the work. Light which shines off the hard gloss finish alter the sculptures into masses of faces; the first thing the human mind tries to form from any unresolved shapes. It’s an arresting experience to see these faces appear. Our brains fill in the gaps and create these ‘souls’ that the show seeks to explore.

The use of colour is very particular in the work, as primal responses to the garish tones augment our experience. With the meditative approach that Shendi hopes we will use to view the work, comes an inner interaction as we are drawn to the ever-shifting forms.

We are almost as important as the work with our part of the viewing. This is true of course of most art, the viewer gets as much as they put into the work, but Shendi’s work has an immediacy that almost drags the eye into and around the pieces.

It’s an assured collection of work that speaks of the confidence of both the artist’s message and his faith in his work. It is this confidence which gives you an innate understanding of your place in the exchange of viewer and object/art. You will almost automatically take your time to view and interact with the work. It’s a must see and a great success for the FYC.

Souls is on at the FYC Gallery on Church Street until 6 June.

Two years past and the year ahead

'Year Planner'

‘Year Planner’

Years….having said there isn’t such a thing as a new year I am titling this post with years and year as I look back on 2 years of blogging. I have gained in confidence and as I write my 100th post I feel a real sense of achievement. I have had small stirrings of ideas of other things to write, perhaps on paper rather than a blog.

I heard the quote “Blogging is not writing. It’s just graffiti with punctuation” in the film Contagion which made me turn a shade of crimson. I think Graffiti is a pretty good art form thanks to the likes of Banksy. Legal Productivity blog has made some very good comments about this quote ‘click here‘ to read more. For me, if it gets me writing then, who cares, my punctuation isn’t that great anyway. If it’s something to do with shelf life then in some ways I am glad it doesn’t linger to long. It makes me a bit nervous to think that things can linger in the web of the worldwide internet for too long.

Blogging has enabled me to ‘practice’ at something. I have become lazy and unambitious in just wanting to see an end result without perfecting the art of practising and talking myself out of doing anything. Odd really as I grew up ‘practising’ the piano, the flute, the saxophone, netball, duke of Edinburgh expeditions. Perhaps I was all practised out. Maybe I have finally found something I want to practise.

My intention with this blog was to write about my husband’s practise to give me motivation to promote his work more. Two years on and his work has really developed, into a definite brand and style. He has up and coming exhibitions. One of my jobs was to fill in the year planner before writing this, I feel I have cheated a bit to use this image in this post as obviously it is not a sculpture and it would have been better to have had all the dates filled but some are not completely finalised and it required another job to search through emails to fill in. However, it is useful to have a picture of the year and know that there are events and exhibitions happening, Nancy Victor Gallery is currently exhibiting work in the show, ‘It’s a wonderful life’ and The Store street , The Curious Duke, galleries and FPS (Free Painters and Sculptors Society) all have work in exhibitions over the next few months and then there is the possibility of The Affordable Art Fair and London TENT later in the year. The most nervously and eagerly anticipated project is the FIRST@108 which we are finishing up this week and will be taken down to London this month to The Royal British Society of Sculptors. So there will be much to write about. 2013 is looking good for sculpture and blogging, let’s see where it take us! 🙂