Inspirational Gifts for Christmas at The New Art Gallery Walsall


This Christmas visit our bright and inspiring Gallery Shop to fulfil all your festive needs.

Come and explore our wide selection of Christmas cards, perfect gifts and quirky stocking fillers.

Discover our Quentin Blake and JMW Turner inspired products and books that complement our

current Exhibitions.



Ignite someone’s creative spark with our new range of artist materials and try-it-yourself guides.

Or dig deeper into their favourite topics, with our large collection of books on Walsall’s renowned

Garman Ryan Collection, Art, Architecture and Local History.


For that truly unique gift, why not start their Art Collection this Christmas with a Limited Edition

Artist Print, specially made for the Gallery and available exclusively through the Gallery Shop.

All purchases support the Gallery.


Christmas Opening Times:

Saturday 23 December, Open

Christmas Eve Sunday 24 December – Closed

Closed Monday 25 December – Closed

Closed Tuesday 26 December – Closed

Open Wednesday 27 December – Open

Closed Monday 1 January 2018 – Closed


Normal Opening hours: Tuesday –Saturday 10am to 5pm & Sunday 12noon-4pm

by Chris Wilkinson

CANCELLED Young People’s Edition of the Makers Market

The Young People’s Edition of the Makers Market which was due to take place at The New Art Gallery Walsall

on Saturday 18 and Sunday 19 November is now CANCELLED due to unforeseen circumstances.

Please accept our apologies for any inconvenience this may cause.

by Chris Wilkinson

Limited Edition Prints Available from The New Art Gallery Shop


Richard Long


offset lithograph in six colours

70 x 70 cm + white border

Edition of 150

Signed and numbered at the front

£295, unframed.


 Matt Collishaw      – SOLD OUT

Third Degree, 2015

lambda print

70 x 70 cm + white border

Edition of 100 + 5APs

Signed and numbered at the front

£235, unframed


Quentin Blake

The Illustration Creature, 2011

giclée print on 300g Somerset Satin paper

32.9 x 48.3 cm

Edition of 100

Signed, numbered and embossed on the front

£250, unframed


This print has been produced by House of Illustration, and is on sale for the duration of the exhibition Seven Kinds of Magic



Rachel Goodyear

Black Holes, 2017


42 x 29.7 cm

Edition of 50

Signed and numbered on the front

£250, unframed



Jonathan Wright

Star, 2017

giclée print

48 x 33 cm

Edition of 25

Signed and numbered on the front

£150, unframed


Commissioned to coincide with the current exhibition

Legacies: JMW Turner and contemporary art practice



Jonathan Wright

Empire – Tower, 2014/2017

giclée print

48 x 33 cm

Edition of 25

Signed and numbered on the front

£150, unframed


Commissioned to coincide with the current exhibition

Legacies: JMW Turner and contemporary art practice



“These images are created by projecting a beam of light across the studio work bench. The shadows are captured on a screen mounted on the end of the bench

by Chris Wilkinson

PEOPLE’S CHOICE Artwork in Focus – Autumn

Mary Fedden (1915 – 2012), Flowers in Tuscany, oil on canvas c.mid 20th century was the People’s Choice winner for the theme of Flowers and Still Life



Mary Fedden is well known as a still life painter. However, what can at first appear simple and effortless belies her skilled use of carefully considered composition, her particular choice and juxtaposition of objects and her impressive understanding of colour. What excited Fedden was the actual process of painting; her exuberant manipulation of paint is often not apparent in reproductions of her work.


Acquired for the Permanent Collection in 1960 from the Royal West of England Academy, with whom she had a lifelong association, Flowers in Tuscany is dated mid 20th century. Another painting by Fedden, Flowers on a Tiled Floor 1956,* which depicts a very similar arrangement of flowers and a mountain back drop, may provide a clue to a more exact date when the former was painted.


Fedden travelled extensively, particularly in France and Tuscany, producing many sketchbooks full of ideas, and Flowers in Tuscany probably resulted from one of these trips. Italy must have been a special place for Fedden, as it was there, in 1949 that she holidayed with a friend from the Slade School of Art (where she had studied), the artist Julian Trevelyan, following the breakdown of his marriage. It was on this trip that the pair fell in love and on their return, Fedden joined him at his home and studio in Durham Wharf, where she lived and worked for the rest of her life.


Trevelyan, who was predominantly a printmaker, had a profound effect on the development of her work, as did the artists Henri Matisse, Georges Braque, Ben and Winifred Nicholson, and Christopher Wood with their use of flattened picture planes, separation of still life objects and interpretation of colour. Trevelyan, who was linked to the Surrealist movement, encouraged Fedden to flout the rules of perspective and exploit disproportion in her work; large and small objects appearing transposed in scale and often it takes on a dreamlike quality.


Flowers in Tuscany is typical of her still life studies in that it is positioned in front of a landscape, revelling in the contrast of disparate elements. In this painting Fedden experiments and pushes the boundaries of perspective; a classical urn appears in profile whereas the table top is tipped vertically towards the viewer, creating a large round shape on which to anchor the vase of flowers, echoing the circular motifs of the chair back, the curves of the vase and the blousey blooms spilling out of it. These in turn, contrast with the overlaid verticals of the chair rods, which are repeated by the gateposts in the background, linking the whole composition. The chair is more abstract shape than an accurate rendering, it is a suggestion for the viewer to complete.


For Flowers in Tuscany, Fedden has worked in oil paint on a canvas which she probably stretched and primed herself, something she used to do at this point in her painting career. Her method of working would often involve her sketching in the basic structure of a composition and building up the initial image using turpentine thinned paint, before applying numerous layers of thicker paint. The enjoyment she got from this process is evident in her energetic brushstrokes and confident handling of the paint.


The differing thicknesses of paint are clearly discernible in this work. Occasionally the canvas peeps through and the under painting is visible; thinner, almost transparent paint such as used on the chair back contrasts with the texture of the brush marks where she has laid down the undiluted oil paint. Her use of sgraffito on the ribs of the vase and red flower boldly tears through the impasto to expose the support beneath. Flowers in Tuscany is an example of her earlier more soft edged style, where the outlines of her objects are less defined, something she wished she could recapture in her later, more mature work.


The vivid Mediterranean blue colour which predominates Flowers in Tuscany evokes Southern European skies and is used throughout the painting, linking the whole composition. In contrast, the bright pink and red of the trumpet flower at the forefront of the arrangement catches the eye, inviting the viewer into the painting.

The rolling mountains in the background stand out against the deep blue sky but elements of this blue are also incorporated. The area to the right of the table shares the same colour palette as the mountains but is made distinct from them due to the change in direction and style of mark making with much shorter, vertical staccato brush strokes. There is a stillness to this right hand passage of the painting which counterbalances the busyness of the floral arrangement.


The flowers sit brazenly in their vase; a joyous celebration of the surrounding earth’s spoils, the dark centres of their elliptical vortices staring out of the picture plane. Tall skeletal seed heads provide a pathway from the foreground to the hills in the distance behind them. A further visual link is provided by the fluid loop of bright blue paint which dances across the blooms. At first it appears to be a part of the under painting, but on closer inspection it shows itself to be a later addition, painted after they were completed. A very definite statement, it sweeps across the trumpet flowers, weaving in and out of them like the after image left by a child’s sparkler.

Finally, barely perceptible, two ghostly figures stand near the open gate. The colour of the baked mountain earth, they are almost on the point of becoming part of the landscape. The woman on the left holds onto the gate, there is a tension in her arm which appears to be supporting her weight as she leans towards her companion, whose right arm encircles her waist in a subtle act of balancing. Her striped dress mirrors the gateposts next to her. They provide the only clue to who the flower gatherers and arrangers might be in a scene otherwise devoid of human presence.


Mary Fedden was a trailblazer becoming the first female tutor in the Painting School at the Royal College of Art (from 1956 to 1964), teaching a golden generation of artists including David Hockney and Patrick Caulfield, and was elected a Senior Royal Academician in 1992. During the 1960s and 70s her work was somewhat eclipsed by that of Trevelyan’s, but subsequently her reputation has justifiably grown.


Fedden’s long painting career has resulted in a large legacy of work. She painted every day, it was what she loved to do, and continued to do, right up until her death at the age of 96 in 2012. Her work could be described as a celebration of the everyday, but it is one in which she elevates the ordinary to the extraordinary.


*Christopher Andreae, Mary Fedden  Enigmas and Variations, Lund Humphries, 2007 p.52



October 2017


by Chris Wilkinson

To celebrate the release of Loving Vincent an animated feature

To celebrate the release of @LovingVincentUK – an animated feature that explores the life and controversial death of one of the world’s best loved artists, Vincent van Gogh – we have two pairs of tickets to the live satellite premiere and Q&A on Monday 9 October at the @lightwalsall. 


To enter just tell us which Van Gogh work hangs in our gallery! 


GOOD LUCK… (p.s. our website is a treasure trove of information!)



Terms and Conditions

  1. Entrants must be aged 12 and over.
  2. One entry per person. 
  3. Competition closes at 12pm on 5 October.
  4. The winner will be notified via Facebook or Twitter.
  5. There are two pairs of tickets to see Loving Vincent with Q&A at Light Cinema Walsall available to win.
  6. There is no cash or prize alternative.
  7. Transport to and from the cinema is not included.
  8. By entering into this competition you are giving permission for your entry to be used on all Loving Vincent social media platforms and associated publicity.

by Chris Wilkinson

Local Makers’ Markets – Stall Holder Applications 2017


We are looking for fantastic designer-makers and artists to apply to take part in The New Art Gallery Walsall’s 2017 Local Makers’ Markets. Celebrating the wealth of talent in the region, and offering Christmas shoppers the chance to buy something unique, the Gallery will be hosting local makers during two weekend Festive Markets this November and December.


We are looking for applications from a range of creative disciplines including, painting, sculpture, jewellery, photography, lighting, textiles, stone carving, fashion, glass and more.

If you already sell your products or are looking for the perfect opportunity to launch yourself into the creative market, we want to hear from you.


Local Makers Market

Celebrating the wealth of talent in the region and offering Christmas shoppers the chance to buy local bespoke and handmade products. Join us on Saturday for a full programme of free demonstrations by the makers.

Saturday 2 December, 11am-5pm

Sunday 3 December, 12pm-4pm


New for 2017

Local Makers Market: Young People’s Addition

Showcasing the local young creative talent

Saturday 18 November, 11am-5pm

Sunday 19 November, 12pm-4pm


How to apply for a stall:

To apply for a stall at either of the Makers Markets please download the relevant application form below:





For further information or enquiries, please contact Catherine James, or 01922 654411.



by Chris Wilkinson

Rachel Goodyear Limited Edition Prints

Rachel Goodyear’s gorgeous print lithographBlack Holes is now available exclusively in the Gallery Shop.


A limited edition of 50 with 10 Artist’s Proofs and each signed by the artist, are available to purchase for £250 (unframed). All proceeds support the Gallery’s programme.


To purchase a print, please call the Gallery reception on 01922 654400 or email:



Image credit:  Rachel Goodyear, Black Holes, lithograph, ed of 50, 10 APs, 42 x 29.7 cm, 16.5 x 11.7 in. Courtesy Pippy Houldsworth Gallery, London. Copyright the artist.

by Chris Wilkinson

Walsall Council delighted by £3.5m Arts Council England funding for NAG

(Tuesday 27 June) Arts Council England (ACE) announced that it will be investing an additional £170m outside London between 2018 and 2022 which includes funding of £3.5m for Walsall’s New Art Gallery. This investment, as part of its new National Portfolio, will support the delivery of art and culture to Walsall residents and continue to encourage visitors to come to the town from the West Midlands region and wider.


Councillor Sean Coughlan, Leader of Walsall Council said:


“I am delighted that Arts Council England recognises the national importance of the New Art Gallery with its £3.5 million National Portfolio Organisational offer for 2018-2022. Being offered every single pound that we requested is a significant vote of confidence in the New Art Gallery and our future plans for its sustainable management. With the potential of a Commonwealth Games just down the road 2022, I’d like to think we can showcase Walsall on a global stage.”


“I made it clear when setting our budget earlier this year that we never intended to close the Gallery. Instead, given the ongoing pressures to local authority funding, we needed to be more imaginative and certain about how we operate and fund such facilities. Taking a long term view of the budget over a four year plan has allowed us to do just that.”


Photo:  Councillor Ian Shires, Portfolio Holder for Community, leisure and culture and Stephen Snoddy, Director, The New Art Gallery Walsall


by Chris Wilkinson


Dod Procter (1890-1972), The Quiet Hour, oil on canvas, 1935 was the People’s Choice winner for the theme of Flowers and Still Life 



Dod Procter often painted subjects that other artists overlooked such as children, flowers and domestic scenes.  The setting for The Quiet Hour is the kitchen of Dod’s former home at Myrtle Cottage in Newlyn, Cornwall.  The Welsh dresser in the painting is decorated with various pieces of china which Dod was fond of collecting and would often decorate herself.  The young girl in the painting is Polly Walker, daughter of a local artist and friend of Dod’s.  This kitchen scene can be found in many of Dod’s work such as Kitchen at Myrtle Cottage (c.1935), in which Polly also appears, which is in Tate’s Collection.   Dod was influenced by the Impressionists particularly Renoir, and later critics would call her our own ‘English Renoir’.  The style of the Impressionists is reflected in this painting with its use of light and colour.


Dod Procter was born Doris Shaw in 1892 in the middle class area of Tavistock.  She was called Dod for short and continued to use the name all her life as she enjoyed its ambiguity.  After her father’s death in 1907 the family moved to the thriving art colony in Newlyn, Cornwall; it was here that Dod at the age of 15 enrolled in Stanhope Forbes’ School of Painting.  The Newlyn Art Group became known for their depiction of the local fisherman and their families, capturing the harsh realities of their lives, not a romanticised view.  In 1912 Dod married another Newlyn artist, Ernest Procter, and they travelled to many exotic places together, such as Africa and the West Indies; painting many of the local people in their vibrant costumes.


Dod painted soft nude figures mainly of women and children, they would become known for their simplified forms and realistic quality.  This can be seen in her most famous work Morning (1926) also in Tate’s Collection.

Dod also enjoyed painting flowers and scenes from her garden; she applied the same sculptural quality to her flowers has she did to her figure paintings.  Her travels abroad also encouraged her to paint many exotic flowers.


In 1935, Ernest died at the age of 49.  Dod’s work then began to change; her paintings became hazier with a softer focus, this is reflected in her work called Spring Flowers which is also currently on display in the collection galleries as part of the People’s Choice exhibition.  Dod’s work achieved great success; she became a Royal Academician in 1962.  She was often described as a real character, eccentric, stubborn and always enjoyed being the centre of attention.  She had long legs, short black bobbed hair, dark eyes and brilliant skin.  Hannah Gluckstein described her as “having great charm, a keen sense of humour and always ready for an adventure”.  Dod’s work began to slip in to obscurity as public taste began to change.  However, she still carried on showing her work at The Royal Academy every year, where she was fondly remembered as always wearing her famous black Spanish hat.  She died in 1972 at the age of 82.


The Quiet Hour is one of my favourite works in the Permanent Collection.  The young girl looks so quiet and content just reading her book, which is something that I often do myself.  I love the way the light picks out all the different colours in the painting, from the yellows in the table cloth to the blues and pinks in the young girl’s hair.  The kitchen scene feels so homely and comforting; I could easily see this hanging on my own kitchen wall.


Julie Jones, Gallery Assistant

June 2017



The Quiet Hour by Gerald Kells


she leans out bored

in her pastel blue kitchen,

book propped on milk jug

speckled with the sea



she rests on one elbow,

a boy-thin haircut –

dress cropped for summer

just above the knee



she’s bored of children

clambering up mountains,

no longer exciting

as they once used to be



her mind drifts to futures

far beyond schooldays

and wild declarations

of who she wants to be:



a woman who’ll return,

her gaze unsparing

on the cold calm of childhood

before she was free


Gerald Kells is a writer and poet from Walsall and member of the Walsall Arboretum Poetry Group


by Julie Brown

Dementia Awareness Week at The New Art Gallery Walsall

The New Art Gallery Walsall is proud to be a Dementia Friendly venue and this week we hosted the launch of Walsall in Our Words, a scrapbook aiming to capture memories of Walsall from residents living in care homes settings. The book contains photos and stories from residents from Aldridge Court, Kelvedon House, Oak Lodge, Richmond Hall, The Cottage Nursing Home, The Arboretum Nursing Home, Waters Edge and The Watermill.  This project was facilitated by the Care Improvement and End of Life service which offers support for care homes across the Walsall Borough and is a collaboration between St Giles Hospice and Pathways 4 Life funded by Walsall CCG.  The scrapbook is on display in our Scenes of Walsall exhibition in The Family Gallery until it closes on Sunday 16 July.


On Tuesday we also hosted the Walsall Borough Dementia Cafes for a special reminiscence session and members participated in sharing their memories of Walsall and contributing to our display bunting.


This Saturday 20 May, we will be celebrating traditional toys with a Peg Doll-making workshop in The Family Gallery between 1-3pm, free, drop in, all welcome!







Image credit Emily Pardoe-Billings, launch of the Walsall in Our Words scrapbook

by Chris Wilkinson