Forthcoming Exhibitions & Events

Trace: distilled nature

An exhibition of paintings by Helen Rawlinson and Sarah Seymour.

Opening: 6th March 2020, 5:30-7:30pm,
On show weekdays 12:30-19:30pm until 31st March 2020
At Rye Creative Centre Gallery, New Road, Rye, East Sussex, TN31 7LS
Free parking on car park next to venue

Both artists distil the aspects of nature that fascinate them by means of colour in order to depict the essence of their subject at its most fundamental.

The exhibition’s title ‘Traces’ has sadly received an extra layer of poignancy after the catastrophic wildfires ravaged the area Sarah Seymour’s Australian Bird series was inspired by when she visited in 2019.

Selecting only the birds Sarah encountered as a starting point, this recent work strives to encapsulate the essence of these birds by stripping away much of the form and leaving the colour to depict the species.

Sarah has been a studio holder at Rye Creative Centre since 2014. After a varied career including work with animals and conservation work, the natural world appears in much of the work she now produces. Sarah has previously created a series of works inspired by the landscape of Dungeness where she lives, concentrating on skyscapes to depict an emotional response.

You can see more of Sarah Seymour’s work on and on Instagram.

Helen Rawlinson is showing her new body of work, inspired by looking at close up images of flowers combined with an obsession of the eroded layers of pattern and colour on walls and floors. In an organic process she builds colour and pattern using collage, print as well as oil with wax on canvas or board.

Helen lives and works in East Sussex with a studio at Rye Creative Centre.
She has worked in the design industry and education using all areas of textile design and making. Now painting in oils these textile print influences continue to emerge with colour as a major factor.

You can see more of Helen Rawlinson’s work on and on Instagram.


Preview 5.30-7.30pm, Friday 31 January – everyone welcome!

Exhibition continues weekdays 12-7.30pm until 28 February

An exhibition of paintings by four painters whose work considers the personal and political aspects of humanity’s relationship with the natural world.

Once fantastical ideas offered by science fiction have quickly become scientific fact and sometimes seem unimaginative compared to current scientific research and predictions. How do we as individuals respond?

Susan Absolon

“Be aware of the time it was,
And the names of those present.  
Leave nothing unsaid.
The shape and colour 
Of the shadows as they pass
Will help you tell the story.
And in telling the story,
Process the grief you will feel.”

Standing Rock takes its title from the 2016-17 Sioux Indian Dakota Access Pipeline protest.  It’s a painting that reflects on mortality, personal loss, the environment and patriarchal power.

Joe Packer

“At the house I grew up in,” Joe Packer says, “You could walk straight out of the back door into a wood. It was in a small place called Shottesbrooke in Berkshire. Childhood memories involve being in the enclosed, interior/exterior space of a wood. The filtering of light through trees and foliage.” He says his paintings are not of those places, but he thinks of them collectively as “some sort of landscape and somehow connected to places familiar to me where I grew up.”

Paula MacArthur

Recent works explore the geometry and imperfections in natural forms. Removed from their original context these organic and mineral specimens become icons; they appear alien and unfamiliar, inviting questions around the increasing disconnect between humanity and nature.

Paul Smith

‘My work documents my interest in the lost and the found, what is passing out of memory and what is synthesised as trace in the landscape. Exploring lost places and capturing the essence of a moment of abandonment has been part of my practice since my earliest work, photographing the post-industrial landscape of the North East. More recently I have used these explorations of localities on the verge of returning to unofficial wilderness in dialogue with found material.