Last year, I participated in an event called 'Creative Reactions' (for Pint of Science). For this event I, along with 49 other local artists, was paired up with a 'Pint of Science', scientist to produce an artwork inspired by the scientist's work. The artworks were displayed during their related talks at different pubs in Cambridge, and then also exhibited together as the 'Creative Reactions Grand Finale', at St.Barnabas Church on Mill Road.
It was decided that the collaboration between artists and scientists would be continued for this year's Pint of Science festival, following the successs of last year's event. I decided to participate again.
I chose the area of atoms and galaxies as my preferred subject matter. As a result, I was paired up with the scientist, Professor John Barrow, who gave a talk titled 'Our Place in the Universe'. (See below).
I found myself in a place where I was already in the middle of another project, building up a collection of paintings of nebulae and sunsets as a means to develop the skills that I believe I need in order to satisfyingly complete a challenging commission that I have recently been given. I believed that the subject matters presented in John Barrow's talk complimented what I was already doing quite well, and so I decided to choose three of the paintings I was already working on and complete them for the show.
The paintings are titled (from top to bottom) 'Somewhere in a Universe III', 'Somewhere in a Universe II' and 'Somewhere in a Universe I'. The paintings were painted from HD wallpaper images I had found online. (You can find the references of these images by visiting the 'Oil Paint' section under the 'Paintings and Illustrations' heading on my website.) My original idea was to have these nebulae be backgrounds on which I would then paint the different locations I have visited that hold personal memories of moments where it felt like the universe was opening up. However, as I have felt so satisfied in seeing how I have reinterpreted through oil paint the images I had collected from online sources, I am not certain anymore whether I still wish to do that or whether I will just leave them as they are and continue working towards completing that commission.
I exhibited my 3 oil paintings at Professor John Barrow's talk, 'Our Place in the Universe' held during the Pint of Science Festival at a pub in Cambridge on May 21st and at the 'Creative Reaction Grand Finale' exhibition held at St. Barnabas Church a few days later, on May 26th. Unexpectedly, my oil paintings ended up wining third prize out of all the creative projects that were exhibited during the festival. I felt very happy, encouraged and proud.
Below are photos of my paintings hanging up before the opening of 'Creative Reaction Grand Finale' and a JPG of the certificate that was emailed to me just before I was given the third prize payment.