We really do have some fine sculptors in this town, and it's always a joy to see their work properly displayed. Neil, known mostly for her numerous public art commissions, demonstrates that she can work equally well on the small scale as well as the large. There is no doubt the artist is serious about her work, from idea to finished object, yet there is a decided sense of fun about this whole exhibition.
Large exhibits in the courtyard, three aluminium Leaf Sculptures and two patinated steel Pods, invite exploration with hand and mind. These forms, with their smooth edged cut-outs, suggest both the veins of the living leaf and the skeletal litter. Meanwhile the aluminium floor sculptures in the gallery, Leaf Lines offer even more room for the imagination as these works present as mere contour lines of leaf and [perhaps] its shadow. These empty ovals, like the Line Drawing grouping on the wall, appear to be doodles that have jumped into the third dimension. We are excited and delighted by their presentation.
Then there is the examination of smaller painted brass works on a single shelf that runs around the gallery. Here we discover a series of flat sculpted pencils, nib pens, feathers and quite acceptable four letter words, each perfect in itself as a drawing and a sculpture.
A sketch pad of ideas has been brought into reality with a good deal of attention paid to constructing and finishing each object to perfection. Not a rough edge is seen anywhere, which only encourages us to want to pick up and handle the works.
This is a well presented exhibition of imaginative work that looks good in any setting and from every point of view.
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