Exhibitions Quay News Take Part News

Quay Arts Biennial Open Exhibition 2021: ‘FREEDOM’

Application Deadline: Sunday 23rd May 2021, midnight

Emerging and established artists are invited to submit works in any medium for Quay Arts’ biennial Open Exhibition 2021, titled ‘Freedom’.

– Selected group exhibition in the West Gallery in 2022
– Solo exhibition in the West Gallery in 2023

Preview & Prize Giving: Saturday 26th June, 6 – 8pm. Exhibition continues till Sunday 29th August 2021.

‘FREEDOM’ OPEN 2021 Brief:
With the title and theme ‘Freedom’, we’re looking for works exploring ideas centred around current freedoms or lack of. Works exploring this theme can be produced in any medium but must be within 2m x 2m dimensions, max no of works x3.

One artist will be selected from the Open Exhibition 2021 for a solo exhibition at Quay Arts in the West Gallery in 2023. A further selection of up to 7 artists will be selected for a specially curated group exhibition in the West Gallery for early 2022.

Selection Panel:
Rachel Johnston, Open 2019 Winner; Eugene Dugan-Brause, Arts Manager – Quay Arts; Ian Whitmore, Visual Arts Manager (maternity cover) – Quay Arts.

To apply:
Applications will be open for artists to apply via our website from Saturday 24th April.
One-off £20 Submission fee to enter. Entrants must be 18 yrs or over.

Quay Arts is situated within an ex-brewery warehouse on the banks of the River Medina and is the leading Arts Centre on the Isle of Wight. Quay Arts supports the development and display of new work by contemporary visual artists. The West Gallery was designed by award-winning architect Tony Fretton (Camden Arts Centre, Lisson Gallery, ArtSway) and presents work of national and international interest. It has hosted eclectic exhibitions including solo shows by Rachel Whiteread, Andy Goldsworthy, Kurt Jackson, Martin Creed, Vija Celmins and Richard Long.

Previous Open Exhibition winners include:
Rachel Johnston (2019 – Open ‘A Life in Nature’); Caroline Underwood (2017 – Open ‘I must down to the seas again); Joanna Kori (2015 – Open); Holly Cade & Liz Sterry (2013 – Open ‘Duet’); Katayoun Dowlatshahi (2010/11 – Open); and Julian Rowe (2008 – Open ‘Location’).

Quay News Quay@Home

Collaged books: HomeArt with Melanie Swan

Explore the art of collage with postal packs designed by artist Melanie Swan. Each A5 packs contain hand painted rainbow-coloured and patterned papers, a folding book and collage ideas sheets.

To request your FREE pack simply fill in the contact form below and we will post out as soon as possible (available while stocks last). Funded through the Daisie Rich Trust.

*Limited packs available – 1 pack per family*

    Your Name


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    Swimmers: HomeArt with Antonia McGreachan

    A NEW HomeArt Activity by artist Antonia McGreachan, inspired by artist David Hockney. Make your very own abstract swimming pool following this step by step tutorial!

    David Hockney, water and me, an introduction:

    “Water is an essential part of us and our lives. I’ve been captivated by the sight, sound and feel of water all my life and it’s often featured in my paintings. Changing light, movement and the way it abstracts the figure make it a fascinating subject.

    As a teenager in the 1980s my Mum took my Sister and I to a very small gallery/shop in London’s Covent Garden, where I saw massive wall-to-wall swimming pool paintings by the artist David Hockney. It was as if I was immersed in my own pool surrounded by colour and the show had a lasting effect on my own work. As I went about my artistic life exploring water and swimmers as a subject I naturally looked at David Hockney’s paintings whose interpretations of water are as varied as the subject of water itself. Thank you mum!”

    Before you start making your pool why not take a look at his work – click here.

    You will need:
    ⦁ A drawing pencil
    ⦁ A4 White card/paper
    ⦁ A4 dark blue paper
    ⦁ 2-3 different shades of blue colouring pencils
    ⦁ A white pencil
    ⦁ Glue stick
    ⦁ Scissors

    Download the Swimmers template to use here

    Step 1:
    Take a breath and tune into the feeling of water, the sound and feel of it, imagine yourself floating! Or if you don’t swim just walking by it.
    Watch the video I made on Ventnor Beach for inspiration.

    Step 2:
    Take your pencil for a walk across your paper going from one edge to the other. Make sure your paper is on a piece of card or a magazine so the lines and colouring don’t pick up what is underneath.

    Step 3:
    You can make 6 different shades out of your 3 colour pencils by applying different pressure. Practise on a bit of paper or in your sketchbook first.

    Step 4:
    Begin by outlining your pencil design in dark blue.
    To get more intricate patterns you can add more lines using your dark blue pencil as you go along.

    Step 5:
    Start colouring in your pool. As you colour in remember to leave white areas, these are the reflections of light on the water.

    Step 6:
    Draw around the templates on your blue paper with a white pencil and cut them out. You may need an adult to help you. You can download the swimmers template to use here.

    Step 7:
    Place the swimmers on your pool, try out different arrangements

    Step 8:

    Choose your favourite composition and glue it into position.

    Quay News

    Remembering Pink Jen

    A year ago our dear friend and colleague Jeni passed away. We had originally planned to hold a yearly fundraising event at Quay Arts in Jeni’s memory but due to the pandemic forcing the venue’s closure we were unable to do so this year. In light of this, we are asking visitors and patrons to kindly consider making a donation to one of the charities below.

    Jen loved pink.  Of that there was never any doubt.  I don’t think I’ve ever met a person who was more ‘pink’ to be honest.  She was bright, vibrant, vivacious – the living embodiment of the colour.  She had a zest for life and a real desire to encourage others to enjoy it as much as she did.  Passion shone through in everything she undertook; working with young people and children to help enable them to enjoy creativity through the WAVES programme, ‘walking backwards’ to raise money for various charities, travelling and singing with the choir or making silver jewellery. 

    We originally planned to hold a yearly fundraising event at Quay Arts in Jeni’s memory but due to the pandemic forcing the venue’s closure are unable to do so this year. In light of this, we are asking visitors and patrons to kindly consider making a donation to one of the charities below.

    So – this weekend – go pink.  We are!  Our website and social media and newsletter will turn pink and the venue will be lit up bright pink within to remember and celebrate our dear friend Jen.  Please do join us in doing so – I’m certain she would have responded to hearing about it all with one of her big, joyful and infectious laughs!

    Del – Centre manager

    “On meeting Jeni, you couldn’t help but be struck by her warmth and enormously generous spirit. This was ever present in her work ethic – dedicated, engaging, and enthusiastic, she inspired so many. Incredibly creative too, I proudly wear a beautiful silver bracelet that she made for me. If Jen giggled, you giggled – her laugh was infectious. Her knowledge of ‘all things chocolate’ was also impressive.. quite the connoisseur. She loved the colour pink , and we all fondly referred to her as ‘Pink Jen’ which she loved. I have such special memories of Jeni and feel blessed to have known her.”

    “Her bright and bubbly personality shone through in everything she did, a really loyal friend and colleague and a talented jewellery maker with a zest for life, taken far too soon.

    “Jeni would brighten up any room she stepped in with her contagious smile and bubbly personality. She had such a beautiful soul, one of the sweetest ladies I have ever met! Her passion for making the arts accessible to those most vulnerable was truly inspiring.”

    A brilliant, friendly and kind colleague who fought hard for the provision of free creative opportunities for young people on the Isle of Wight, Jeni supported my development as an arts facilitator commissioning me through Quay Arts to deliver workshops, projects and exhibitions with young Islanders. A colourful personality with a sense of humour who is missed.

    Quay News

    TRUSTEE VACANCY: New Chair of SRFA Trustee Board

    The Board of Trustees is seeking a new Chairperson with strong leadership and communication skills, as well as experience of corporate governance and financial management

    An opportunity arises to play an important role in shaping the future strategy of the Steve Ross Foundation for the Arts (SRFA), the Isle of Wight’s cultural hub. 

    As a charity, SRFA (Quay Arts) has a board of trustees who oversee its governance. This now requires a new Chairperson.

    It’s an exciting time to be involved with the arts with Arts Council England’s document ‘Let’s Create’ setting out a strategy for the next ten years, looking forward to:

    ‘A country transformed by culture. Bringing us together, happier, healthier. To excite, inspire, delight. To enrich our lives.’

    What’s involved
    The voluntary position of Chair of Trustees involves: 

    • Calling and chairing Trustee meetings, (usually bi-monthly), having set an agenda
    • Chairing the AGM
    • Liaising with the Quay management, staff and volunteers
    • Where appropriate, communicating with external organisations including funding sources and other professional bodies

    The successful candidate should have:

    • The ability, and willingness to effectively discharge the duties of a Trustee
    • Team leadership qualities
    • Strong communication and organisational skills 
    • Some experience of corporate governance and financial management
    • A willingness to devote the necessary time to the work of the trust

    The closing date for applications is 29th March 2021.

    Become a Trustee
    SRFA (Quay Arts) would also welcome expressions of interest from other candidates who would like to become part of our team of Trustees.

    For further information and to express interest please write to:

    Quay News Quay@Home

    OFF THE RAILS Online Exhibition: Winning Artist Announced!

    For our current exhibition, OFF THE RAILS, we partnered with Isle of Wight Steam Railway to celebrate their 50th anniversary moving from Newport to Havenstreet, by showing artefacts, signs and memorabilia from their collection, related objects and artworks from the IW Heritage Service Collection, AJ Wells & Sons, as well as a series of artist’s and school’s response work.

    As part of this exhibition, we invited artists to submit work to respond to ideas around preservation, displacement and memory, and some wider themes on travel, engineering and movement, giving this exhibition a rich, contemporary feel, whilst retaining the narrative of the Island’s Steam Railway history. Works include painting, drawing, mixed media, digital, print, text and sculpture. You can view all of the artists work here on our online gallery: OTR Online: Artist Response | (

    Artist Prize:
    On Monday 15th February we announced via social media that one artist has been selected from the exhibition to hold a future solo show in Quay Arts’ Clayden Gallery, gaining one-to-one support from the Arts Team in developing their exhibition. In addition, IW Steam Railway have offered a season ticket to IW Steam Railway, giving them unlimited travel on their trains for one year!



    Steve Miles
    His submission to OFF THE RAILS included digital works ‘Fervour 1 & 2’, 50 x 70cm each and six digital works ‘Style Writing Roots (1-6)’, 61 x 16cm each, representing bold, graphic graffiti works on subway trains. See the winning work here – OTR Online: Artist Response | (

    These works on trains represent the beginnings of Steve Miles’ initial interest in the graffiti artform that started on the sides of the trains in the Bronx back in the late 60’s. In the early 80’s when he was a teenager, he was amazed by the large colourful paintings on the sides of the trains and became hooked on practicing the visual style of letterforms –

    “Its crazy to think that these kids living in such hard times created a world-wide artform, using their imagination and creativity to produce moving vibrant pieces of work on the side of the trains, it was a way of feeling like they existed and a way out of the gang culture of the times. If you can think past the fact that it was illegal and understand the world these guys were living in hopefully you will find it just as beautiful and amazing as myself! In such desperate and hard times, they found a way to be constructive and creative, giving birth to an amazing artform!”

    His abstract language of painting combines a highly expressive and gestural graphic style, that is representational of over three decades spent as a graphic designer and graffiti artist. Steve Miles is a member of the National Acrylic Painters Association and lives and works on the IW.

    The selection was made by Georgia Newman, Quay Arts’ Visual Arts Manager, Ian Whitmore, Quay Arts’ Learning, Education and Workshops Manager, and John Paton, Havenstreet’s Museum curator.

    John Paton said this in response:
    “What drew me to Steve’s work is the boldness and energy, a sense of movement and the way the carriages are peopled with such a wide variety of humanity. Railways are an enclosed world of their own, operating to their own set of often arcane rules, but as Steve reminds us, without passengers -and freight – there is no reason for their existence.  I hope that when we can open the railway people will visit ‘Off the Rails’ at Havenstreet, alongside our exhibition celebrating 50 years of the steam railway and view this exciting collection of art in the context of the trains themselves. And perhaps Steve will be inspired to create a work for display at Havenstreet that encapsulates maybe the energy that railways generate.”

    In response to finding out about the announcement, selected artist Steve Miles has said:
    “This opportunity really is a big deal for me and is an opportunity that I will grab with both hands. I am so grateful to the Quay Arts and I’m already looking forward to creating a new body of work for this solo exhibition.”

    Georgia Newman said this in response:
    “I’m thrilled we’ve been able to unanimously select this fantastic artist. Steve’s work is incredibly bold and expressive and shows great promise in adapting the space into something quite exciting. I really look forward to working with him to bring an exhibition of his style and content to our Clayden Gallery in 2022 and potentially do something off-site at Havenstreet too!”

    Steve Miles Website: Steve Miles – Fine Art

    Steve Miles Social Media: Steve Miles Artist | Facebook / Steve Miles / toxic363 (@stevemilesartist) • Instagram photos and videos


    Illustrated Recipes: HomeArt with Lucia Para

    “What if art could find its way into the kitchen? And food could become an imaginative activity too?

    In this video, all kids will be able to start their own favourite recipe book, made with pictures, lots of imagination and … with a twist of fun! Materials can be as basic as you want, and you will get two green and healthy recipes to try… suitable for all palates and palettes!”

    This HomeArt workshop is supported and funded by The Daisie Rich Trust.

    The video is all about fun, imagination, and healthy taste, and here you can download the recipes to go with the activity!

    And if you fancy, you can print your own front cover and the characters cutouts!

    Find out more about Island Artist Lucia Para at

    Quay@Home Uncategorized

    Paper Hearts: HomeArt with Hannah George

    We have another fantastic follow along tutorial for you to do at home this valentines with the whole family. The lovely Hannah George, Island Artist, has created another wonderful HomeArt activity, making origami paper hearts! Perfect to add to a homemade card or even just for some fun.

    Make sure to share this with friends and families and get creating together this valentines!

    You can also download the Paper Hearts worksheet to follow.

    Share with us your creations! #QuayatHome #QuayCreates

    Quay News Quay@Home

    PATTERN: Home Art Activity with Hannah George

    Join Island Artist Hannah George from your own homes and follow this great tutorial on how to create your very own patterned animal!

    The wonderful Hannah George has created a fantastic art activity and filmed a tutorial for you to follow online. Suitable for all ages, this is a perfect mindful resource to use at home. There are downloadable patterned animal templates provided for inspiration or to print and colour in.

    Hannah George (@hgmakings) • Instagram photos and videos


    Download PATTERN Cat Template

    Download PATTERN Owl Template

    Download PATTERN Hedgehog Template

    Quay News


    Quay Arts are looking to commission engaging digital resources for children and families to access online, as part of our family outreach programme supported by the Daisie Rich Trust. 

    We are seeking expressions of interest from artists, makers, creatives for new content that can be shared digitally, such as live or pre-recorded video, audio, worksheets & templates, or a blend. 

    There is no specific theme, but material should be appropriate to the audience and have a participatory or learning element.  

    Expressions of interest should: 

    • be engaging for children 
    • not require prior knowledge of an art form 
    • not require specialist materials to join in 

    Proposed resource/s should be: 

    • minimum of X2 A4 sides (if worksheets) – – maximum of X6 A4 sides 
    • minimum of 10 minutes (if video / audio) – maximum of 30 minutes (can be chunked up) 
    • high quality  

    Along with expression of interest, you may wish to supply a CV, link to examples of your work, and outline how you plan to realise the resource, along with any relevant experience of working with children and families. 

    This opportunity is open to those 18 and over.  

    X3 commissions will be awarded attracting a fee of £150 per commission. An additional limited materials budget will be made available. 

    We are unable to provide funds to cover purchase of digital resources but may be able to assist with small equipment loan such as digital SLR camera / tripod etc upon request. 

    Application schedule:

    • Deadline for applications: Fri 22 Jan / noon 
    • Commissions awarded: Mon 25 Jan 
    • Deadline for delivery of resource: Fri 12 Feb 

    Please email any queries / your expression of interest (proposal) to:

    Quay News Take Part News

    AGM Announcement

    AGM Announcement

    Steve Ross Foundation for the Arts
    Thursday 28th January 2021 | 6pm | Taking place via Zoom

    Quay Arts gives notice of the SRFA Annual General Meeting on Thursday 28th January at 6pm. Due to the current national lockdown, the AGM will be held via Zoom. If you would to attend this year’s AGM, please fill out the contact form and we will send you the zoom link via email closer to the date.

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      Exhibitions Quay News Quay@Home Talks

      Artist Talk with Susie Prangnell: ‘Balance’ Exhibition

      Quay Arts’ Visual Arts Manager Georgia Newman talks to Island Artist Susie Prangnell about her latest exhibition ‘Balance’ currently on in Quay Arts’ Cafe.

      Join us for our first Zoom artist talk in lockdown 2.0, with artist Susie Prangnell discussing her latest exhibition ‘Balance’ at Quay Arts, her chosen medium soft pastels, creative process and some very useful advice for anyone wishing to pursue a career in the arts and creative industries.

      The talk is 14 minutes long and is available while the exhibition is on at Quay Arts until January 2021. To view the exhibition online please click here.