Shropshire Artists at National Exhibition

Several local artists are set to exhibit at the inaugural National Art Exhibition and Sale of Works at the School from 6th-10th June. Curator of the exhibition, Barbara Goolden, taught PE at the College for many years and is delighted that over 50 nationally-renowned artists and sculptors will be exhibiting, including Old Ellesmerian, Martin Aitchison who illustrated more than 70 Ladybird books and the 1950s comic magazine, The Eagle.

Barbara has painted all her life, exhibiting across Shropshire, Cheshire, Wales and the North West. "Painting is a passion," she said. "I love paint and I love the application of paint." A landscape artist, she has exhibited at the Royal Cambrian Academy Open and has been accepted this year into the Welsh Artist of the Year exhibition in Cardiff.

"My father wouldn't let me go to Art College, but I was good at games and played County tennis so I went to PE College where luckily art was part of the curriculum. It's  painting that has kept me sane," she added."Now that I am so-called retired, I can go a little mad and pursue my passion."

One of the local artists she has persuaded to exhibit alongside her is business consultant Alex Baird from Ellesmere. His mother was at the Slade with Martin Aitchison, and he has been painting ever since he was old enough to hold a brush.

A successful artist whilst still at school, Alex dislikes the way art is taught today. "It's all about ideas and young people are no longer taught technique."

An ultra-traditional landscape painter with an interest in detail, he would rather do the washing-up than attempt modern art. "Where's the pleasure in painting a coloured square - I'd be better served putting it on the door."

Alex takes his inspiration from nature's fascinating combinations of vivid colour. He has produced a number of commissions but like many artists hides his light under a bushel. "My wife gets cross with me because I put most of my work away because I feel it's not good enough."

He hopes the invitation to display his Shropshire landscapes at Ellesmere College will be the springboard to move in new directions and he is looking forward to meeting visitors and fellow artists at the exhibition.

Admission is free. Visitors are welcome to explore the school and grounds and light refreshments, lunches and suppers will be available.

Preview evening Wednesday 6th June 7 - 9pm, Thursday 7th - Saturday 9th June 11am - 9pm , Sunday 10th June 11am - 2pm.For further details contact Doris Taylor on 01691 626541 or via email,

20th September 2012  Back to News