The return of Tennyson and Physical Energy
Every day there is good progress with the restoration of Watts Gallery. The parquet floor is now being laid, the Foyle Art for All Learning Studio is now finished and in use by the Contractor, so that the Curator's house and the Curatorial Fellow's house can be completed by early December, the flower beds are being laid, and the ramp for disabled people has been prepared in to the Learning Studio.
The most exciting moment for us all was the return of Tennyson and Physical Energy to the Sculpture Gallery. Seeing these monumental giants gracefully journey from their temporary stable in to the warm, lit, fit for purpose Sculpture Gallery, which still feels the same as before, was memorable. We are immensely grateful to Oxford Exhibitions Service for their masterful management of this scary move.
Physical Energy now looks extremely happy with six conservators, including a trainee conservator from University College London, working on the cleaning and conservation of the sculpture.
At last it is all becoming real. We are even beginning to talk about opening dates and today I showed round the Vice Chancellor of the University for the Creative Arts with whom we have a creative and positive partnership including appointing one of their graduates as our annual artist in residence, and for whom we now have created a studio space for the artist in the refurbishment.
We are very grateful to all of our supporters who have started to help us in buying a bespoke oak bench inspired by Mary Watts design, and purchasing pots which are recreated in the style of Mary Watts and which will be on show in the Pottery Car Park. If our friends can bear it, we shall again be seeking their final push to close the gap on our Hope Emergency Appeal by joining us in unlocking matching money from The Big Give - but more anon!
Onwards and upwards, as Watts would say, and thank you.