Somerville Gallery and the Coronavirus

Due to the current Coronavirus situation we have taken the sensible precaution to suspend formal opening hours of the Somerville Gallery in Otley. Whilst the foot count of visitors is usually not very heavy in a concentrated fashion, the nature of the screen panelling is such that close contact with other people is inevitable.

Should anyone wish to visit the Gallery we are quite happy to accommodate by appointment only for the time being.

By telephoning Ian or Jayne directly at the studio in Burley in Wharfedale : 01943 864349 arrangements can be made to suit most circumstances.

Ian will work solely from the studio for the time being.

We will keep the website updated with news as it develops and please don’t forget that most products can be distributed on line.


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Work In Progress

Work in Progress

Finalised Burley Painting Drawing

Work in Progress

Top left Section Preliminary Colour Draft

Work in Progress

Burley Painting Complete

In February 2018, Ian began preparations for fulfilling a commission by the Burley in Wharfedale Community Trust to create a Legacy painting for the village which would hang in a public place. The idea was to generate a work which would capture the origins of the village, it’s main places of interest and it’s many activities stimulated by a very supportive community.

The plan was to create such a painting in the vogue of Ian’s highly successful ‘Yorkshire’ in his now well recognised and critically acclaimed style of Rubistic Expressionism.

The first step was to develop a unique lay out which could accommodate all these factors which after extensive research through village archives, old newspapers, internet and first hand viewing suggested a spinning wheel inference. This would absorb the rich industrial background of cotton and spinning on which the village prospered from the late 17th century. The philanthropic 19th century wool magnates of Forster and Fison picked up the gauntlet in developing Greenholme Mills and became iconic members of this rapidly expanding village.

The Trust wanted the painting to also reflect the input and views of members of the village and Ian began showcasing and operating a live working session every Thursday afternoon in the library. These sessions have led to an enormous amount of interest and feedback. School children have formally attended, taking part in a Burley painting competition where the winner has his or her work included in the final stages.

The work in progress has been exhibited at the Ilkley Art Show and the Burley Show during the village annual festival.

Work began on the actual painting in oils at the beginning of September which will be done on a top left to right basis so that the progress can be visually easily measured.

Based upon feed back to date we have a wonderful level of commitment and enthusiasm by all who have seen it. Due to the likely popularity of the eventual piece, we are avoiding a limited print structure to keep costs down to the minimum and release three sizes, all on high quality, fine art paper, printed using the high definition and durable Giclee format.

A glazed and varnished replica canvas measuring 24” across will be available for Christmas (as will normal prints) in a custom box containing a book on the construction of the painting and a DVD. It will also contain greeting cards of the work, an offer to have their own personalised icon inserted and a discount voucher for the framing. We envisage only 150 of these being produced.

We are aiming to complete the work by mid November at the latest in order to be ready to unveil the finished product when Burley switches on its Christmas light extravaganza. We will post it’s progress on a regular basis and Ian will be at the library each Thursday afternoon for those wanting a personal viewing.

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