Divided Lines – Stew Gallery, Norwich

Stew Gallery, Norwich – Divided Lines

I accompanied a friend to meet a friend from her art school at this exhibition in Norwich. It was an exhibition of up and coming work from post graduate students from Norwich University College of the Arts from artists such as Rod Penn, Tindi Lewis, Kevin Parker, Samantha Epps, Jenny Comper, Nicola Lines, Aidan Abernethy, Simon Fisher and Serena Caulifield.

The photography as we walked in stuck me as I had seen it before. Rod Penn is my old Capoeira teacher and I often follow his creative outlets on burlesque tribute and photographs from his travels. I especially enjoy his portraiture as it really captures the personality of the person.

Other pieces included installations of babies in shopping baskets and traces of maps with findings from the area. I particularly noticed some elaborately beautiful oil paintings which were unlike anything else in the exhibition. They were styled like historic portraits of women, perhaps medieval with beautifully long dresses and young rosy cheeked faces. This struck me as unlike most contemporary art as art is not for beauty any more but subtle messages about society.

The real reason I mention this particular exhibition is that the organisation and venue is run on practically no money. They have acquired a dingy, rundown 60s building and gradually built it up into a fantastic exhibition space and a number of workshops for professional artist and community use. The place has real community involvement with mostly free entry and the running of workshops all year round.

I admire how the organisers have built this run down building up to be something creative for the area!

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