Members update: Jonathan Evens & Rob Floyd

Art Trail 2Jonathan Evens will be talking about the Art Trail for the Barking Episcopal Area to the Friends of Valence House on Tuesday 12th May at 3.00pm. The Art Trail was created for the Barking Episcopal Area by commission4mission and aims to raise awareness of the rich and diverse range of modern and contemporary arts and crafts from the last 100 years which can be found within the 36 featured churches. Valence House was voted by the Guardian as one of the 50 best free things to do in London. The only surviving manor house in Dagenham, it dates back to Medieval times and is still partially surrounded by a moat. Following extensive refurbishment in 2010, exciting galleries tell the story of Barking and Dagenham and its people throughout the ages.

Jonathan will also be giving a presentation on his sabbatical art pilgrimage to the Faith & Image group at St Mary’s South Woodford (207 High Road, South Woodford, London E18 2PA) on Saturday 30th May from 6.30pm. Over the three months that he spent on sabbatical in 2014 he enjoyed the opportunity to visit churches in Belgium, England, France and Switzerland to see works of modern and contemporary art.  He saw exciting work by a wide range of significant twentieth century and contemporary artists including, among others, Jean Bazaine, Pierre Bonnard, Anthony Caro, Mark Cazalet, Marc Chagall, Brian Clarke, Le Corbusier, Stephen Cox, Maurice Denis, Eric Gill, Evie Hone, John Hutton, Roy de Maistre, Alfred Manessier, Henri Matisse, George Minne, Henry Moore,Tom Phillips, John Piper, Patrick Reyntiens, Georges Rouault, Albert Servaes, Gino Severini, Graham Sutherland and Bill Viola.

The commissions that he saw during this sabbatical tell a story of a continuing engagement by the Church with contemporary art from the Post-Impressionists to the present day. This engagement has often been contentious and contested but it has nevertheless been a continuing relationship involving both mainstream artists with a Christian faith and church commissions undertaken by mainstream artists who have not professed the faith. This story is not one which has been well told, either by the Church or the mainstream art world. There are many reasons for this on both sides but his concern in making this story the focus of his sabbatical has been to encourage the Church to tell and to value this story.

St Stephen Walbrook Church - City of London

St Stephen Walbrook Church – City of London

Reflecting the recent Guildhall Art Gallery re-hang, the Choral Scholars of St Martin-in-the-Fields and Revd Jonathan Evens will present a service series of musical discovery at St Stephen Walbrook (39 Walbrook, London EC4N 8BN) exploring themes of beauty, faith, home, imagination, leisure, love and work. Each Monday at 1.10pm a new theme will be explored through music: 15 June – Faith; 22 June – Home; 29 June – Love; 6 July – Work; 13 July – Imagination; 20 July – Leisure; 27th July – Beauty. As part of the service series, a guided tour of the Guildhall Art Gallery rehang will take place on 21 July at 1.10pm. Meet in the main entrance of Guildhall Art Gallery.

Jonathan’s latest exhibition review for the Church Times was of still small voice at The Wilson in Cheltenham. The collection of British biblical art which was on show there began with the Nazarene and Pre-Raphaelite styles of William Dobson and William Bell Scott, and continued, with Eric Gill as the bridge between Modernism and the earlier Arts and Crafts movement, through the inter-war period of the 1920s and 1930s, the Second World War, the post-war era, and the later 20th century, into the early 21st century.

Jonathan has also had a visual meditation published by ArtWay in which he reflects on ‘Word’ by Maciej Hoffman where ‘we can see many connections between breath, inspiration and words’: ‘Inspiration is free just as breathing is free. Such freedom is vital as, when breathing becomes constrained, death quickly follows. Hoffman believes deeply in artistic creation as the one real margin of freedom we can use.’

Rob Floyd 'Self Portrait With 'Artist's Block'' 2014Rob Floyd’s self portrait in this year’s Royal Society of British Artists exhibition won The Gordon Hulson Memorial Prize for draughtsmanship, variety and exploration. Rob says, ‘This really has been a wonderful end to what has already been a great experience – thanks very much to all of you who made the trip to London to see the show.’

Meanwhile work continues on his Stations of the Resurrection cycle for Liverpool cathedral which is due for completion next Easter. There is a Taster Exhibition at Liverpool Cathedral this month running until Thursday 14th May. For more details please visit http://www.liverpoolcathedral.org.uk/401/section.aspx/400/rob_floyd.

Finally Manchester Cathedral will be loaning some of Rob’s Stations of the Cross cycle for the Come & See Art Trail which will be part of this year’s Saddleworth Festival of the Arts which will run from 6th June – 13th June. There will be quite a diverse selection of artworks in the trail which looks rather exciting, for more information please
visit http://www.saddleworthfestival.org.uk/events/41.