29 May 2013

Introducing Claire Coles

Time for my next in the series on my fellow Perrier-Jouet Arts Salon members.  This time I'm introducing Claire Coles.

Claire is a textile artist, specialising in making large embroidered couture wall papers and panels.  She draws with a sewing machine in the same way as you might draw with a pen or pencil.

I first encountered Claire's work when she had an exhibition at Flow Gallery last year.  She was commissioned by Perriet-Jouet to produce some embroideries that were then turned into boxes and bags for the Champagne.

It was a great exhibition and my first introduction to the world of Perrier-Jouet (I didn't know it at the time but shortly after the opening I was invited to become a member of the Arts Salon).  I didn't get to meet Claire that night but am grateful to Perrier-Jouet for giving me the opportunity to at the first Salon meeting.

Claire's designs for Perrier-Jouet

details of the embroideries that Claire made for Perrier Jouet

Some of Claire's embroidered wallpapers.

Another project that Claire has been involved in is making a collection of silk scarves from her designs.

Here are my 2 favourite designs.

I love the watery colour and also that pop of yellow.  They are for sale in the lovely new Jaeger Boutique Gallery in their flag ship store in Regent Street here in London.  I'm hoping to get my hands on one myself.

I'm a big fan of floral walpaper and am a massive fan of Claire's work.  Here panels are very unique and I love the way she builds up the layers of paper and how the lines she draws are so free flowing. Hopefully one day I'll be able to commission her to make a bespoke panel for me!  

For more information on Claire see her website

I'd love to hear what you think about Claire's work, so do leave me a comment below.


25 May 2013

Introducing Susie MacMurray

I first saw Susie's work when I was up in Manchester last year.  The first piece of her work I saw was  this piece

It is quite hard to capture the beauty of the piece in a photograph.  I looks from a distance like it's made of fur or silk or something very tactile, but when you get up close you realise that it is made of leather and very large, sharp and pointy pins.

I love how the piece is both threatening and beautiful at the same time.

Luckily she had a solo show in London recently, and my lovely friend Val, who is a friend of Susie's, took me along to the opening.

Here are some of my favourite pieces from the exhibition.

Again I love the tactile quality of the pieces, but when you get up close they not tactile at all, in fact the exact opposite.  If you want to find out more about Susie and what she has coming up check out her website.

Let me know do you like your art work more cuddly or with a bit of an edge like Susie's work.


23 May 2013

Resistance if futile

Resistance to the power of flowers if futile.  There is something about how they can cheer you up even on a grey day, it's hard to be sad looking at flowers.

I'm sitting here writing this as the weather veers between pouring rain and bright sunshine and thought i would share one of my latest works with you.

Winter flowers, they are tulips, cut from an old  Chambers of Commerce Atlas.  The atlas is full of maps showing all the different trade routes.  It is from the 1920's and you can tell as the whole atlas is very much centred around the British Empire.   I love looking through old atlases, it's like a window in to a past time.

I know tulips are spring flowers, but somehow the colours of the map made me think of winter.

What flowers do it for you? which ones can't you resist? Leave me a comment below

If you want to see more of my available work then pop over to my website.

I've had a redesign so would love to know what you think.  It's not quite all finished yet, there is still a lot more content to be added in but I was too excited to sit on it for much longer.

Thanks for reading x

15 May 2013

The First Cut in the Djanogly Gallery Nottingham

The First Cut exhibition is on the first stop of its tour, in the Djanogly Gallery in Nottingham.  I was up there a couple of weeks ago to install The Harbingers and also attend the opening.

The exhibition has a very different feel as there are some different works and it is split into 3 rooms.  Some of it works better and some not so.

I was hoping to take some general photos at the opening, but they wouldn't allow photos, I'm not sure why as no one minded in Manchester.  Any way the Djangoly Gallery sent some photos over to me of my work so I thought I'd share them with you.

© Claire Brewster 2013

© Claire Brewster 2013

© Claire Brewster 2013

© Claire Brewster 2013

It is a new challenge every time I install this piece. The important thing for me is to get the right feeling when I'm installing the work, I am looking for a flow in the birds that captures their etherial nature.  Achieving this when you have a deadline of a train to catch is not always easy!

I'd love to know what you think of the exhibition now it is in Nottingham and if you saw it in Manchester how you think it compares, so please do leave me a comment below.


10 May 2013

Cristina Iglesias at the Reina Sofia in Madrid

During my recent trip to Madrid, I visited one of my favourite museums, the Reina Sofia, or to give it its full title, Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia.  I love the permanent collection they have, and when I used to live in Madrid I was a regular visitor.  I first saw the work of Bill Viola there and they have the Guernica on permanent display, which is alway powerful and moving to see.

This time they had a solo show by Cristina Iglesias, a Spanish artist.  I was not really familiar with her work so went a long with no expectations and was greatly inspired by the exhibition.  One of the nicest things was that there was no interpretation, apart from titles of the work, just the work to be enjoyed.

Here are some images I took of the exhibition.

This was my favourite piece, I love the colour contrast between the brown and the green and the simple play on perspective.

This reminds me of a church doorway, so very beautiful and simple

Beautiful leaves under water, it was hard to work out what the leaves were made of, but it was very effective the way the water rushed over them

Textured and moulded metal

I love the shadows that the works make, very moody and atmospheric

And me looking moody and atmospheric....

And some moulded metal, it was cast from eucalyptus I think.

Have you seen any great exhibitions recently? I'd love to hear about them, so leave me a comment below.


9 May 2013

Want to have a go at paper cutting?

Well you can, with me!

I'm doing a workshop at the London Transport Museum on 17 May. As part of their Brightest London Friday late.

You will get the chance to make a small botanical paper cut.

The full details are on the London Transport Museum website.  The workshop will run form 7-9pm and is a drop in session on a first come first served basis.

The workshop is free but you have a ticket for the event and I would recommend booking advance as they can get pretty busy.  You can book online here.

And to get you in the mood here are some of the botanical inspired paper cuts I have made.

© Claire Brewster - From a Dark Heart
© Claire Brewster - There is beauty here

© Claire Brewster - All this is Autumn

© Claire Brewster - Rain Rose

© Claire Brewster - False Principles

It would be great to see you if you can make it, so do come along, let me know in the comments below if you are planning to come.

If you can't make it but would like to have a go at home let me know and i can send you one of my templates to have a go with email me or leave a comment below and I will send you something.

If you want to see more of my work that is available to purchase please head over to my website www.clairebrewster.co.uk

With gratitude


3 May 2013


One of the greatest joys of being a member of the Perrier Jouet Arts Salon is getting to know the other members, they're all very distinguished people and also a lot of fun.

So I'm starting a series over the next few months introducing the other artist members to you.

First up is Kate MccGwire.

She probably doesn't need much introduction, her work is pretty well known.  I was lucky enough to see her solo show at All Visual Arts in London in January, it was the first time I'd seen her work in the flesh so it great to see so much of it in one place.

Her work is very visceral and has so much energy to it.  The feathers she uses are all sourced ethically and create an amazing muted palate.  They're so textured and have such energy and life in them.

Anyway rather than me wittering on about them here are some images for you to enjoy.

© Kate MccGwire 2012 - Splice

© Kate MccGwire 2012 - Splice (detail)

© Kate MccGwire 2013 - Occulus

© Kate MccGwire 2012 - Surge

© Kate MccGwire 2012 - Stigma

© Kate MccGwire 2012 - Crave

I'd love to hear your thoughts on Kate's work, leave a comment below and hope you love it as much as I do and urge you if you get the chance to see it in person to do so.

If you want to find out more about Kate you can see her website here.

And do share this with anyone who you think might enjoy Kate's work.

Thanks for reading.


1 May 2013

My Latest obsession

It seems myth and legend are undecided about owls, some think they are the harbingers of misfortune and death (Shakespeare and the Romans) and some that they are wise, sacred and a good omen (mostly the ancient Greeks).

I'm mostly on the side of the good, I think Owls are very beautiful and graceful birds, but they are a little scary, those big feet and and silent flight and the screech they make.  Non the less I am firmly an owl appreciater.

They are great birds to draw and subjects for paper cuts as they are very dynamic and have great markings and those scary feat I mentioned, well they are great to draw as they are so expressive.

Here are a few pieces I made recently.

© Claire Brewster 2012 - Creature of the night

© Claire Brewster 2012 - Creature of the night

© Claire Brewster 2012 - Creature of the night

© Claire Brewster 2012 - Silently in the night

© Claire Brewster 2012 - Silently in the night

© Claire Brewster 2012 - I bring gifts

© Claire Brewster 2012 - I bring gifts

Be warned I am planning a lot more owls in the near future, so if you don't love them now then you will by time I have finished with my owl phase!

What do you think, are owls scary or beautiful (or both)? Let me know in the comments below.

If you enjoyed this please share it.