We’ve all been there. Sleepless nights deciding what extra-special present we can give our partner as a big anniversary surprise.
Well for Clare Pell – taking out a gallery space booking for her artist-teacher husband Mike to fill – seemed like a brilliant idea.
Mike, who is Head of Art at Bath’s King Edward’s School, was of course delighted by his wife’s generosity and originality.
However he soon realised he was up against a big personal challenge.
He had a matter of months to produce some original work to put on display. It was also – for Clare – a stress-filled time in which she shared her husband’s anxieties but was resolute in encouraging him onwards.
Mike’s solo exhibition at the 44AD Artspace Gallery is a triumph of determination and original endeavour but also the physical and visible evidence of a journey he has taken to get to know himself better and come to terms with the influences on his life and work.
He is himself the son of an artist and has been surrounded by the tools of the trade from a very early age and has been no stranger to art schools and gallery space.
He himself did a Foundation Art course at Banbury before three years of study at Bath Academy of Art – based at Corsham Court.
Mike has many artistic loves including drawing, printmaking, British painters of the 1950’s, collage and Abstract
Expressionism. Influences that present themselves in this exhibition.
Set amongst multi-layered and coloured images that also show his love for local architecture and urban surfaces.
Mike’s exhibition is open during normal working hours through to and including the coming week-end.