For more than 40 years, the Loft Theatre has hosted artists
who wish to exhibit their work in the lounge areas of the
All are welcome to view the exhibitions, free of charge, when the
theatre is open to the public during the run of a Loft production.
Reflections (machine embroidered) by Virginia Murphy
Until the end of the season, our exhibition space features the work of
three local artists: Virginia Murphy, Carol Blunt and
Virginia Murphy started painting about 25 years ago when she
lived in Scotland and for a short time she studied with and was
inspired by the well-known Scottish artist Ann Sinclair. After moving
back to her home town of Leamington Spa 20 years ago, Virginia further
developed her painting under the excellent guidance of Warwickshire
artist, Pauline Wilson.
Virginia began developing her own technique using various media and
experimenting with texture and colour to create a unique style. As all
creative people develop their own style, Virginia’s evolved from
small watercolours to large acrylic and oil paintings expressing her
love of colour and nature in bold compositions on canvas. It is a
desire to try to recreate the complexity of colours in nature that
spurs her on – ever changing her style in the desire to express
herself through her pictures.
Although continuing with her painting, Virginia now focuses much of her
time on design and creative arts and crafts. About three years ago
Virginia attended several courses in felt-making and creative design.
She was really inspired from this to experiment with machine
embroidery. So now, as well as painting, Virginia creates very
individual and striking machine embroidered pictures, using handmade
felt and beautiful materials.
Carol Blunt is a Kenilworth-based ex art teacher. She has a
passionate interest in mixed media, painting, printing, collage and
Carol takes her inspiration from nature and cultures locally and
abroad, and loves to express herself through colour, form and texture.
Ode to Vincent (giclée print from an|
original textile) by Jacqui Smithson
Jacqui Smithson is a mixed media artist with a passion for
texture and strong, brilliant colour. From her beginnings as a painter
she also now works with textiles and makes her own felt which she then
embellishes with threads, silks and stitch. Jacqui works to
commission and regularly shows her work in the region. She also
teaches felt-making workshops in the area.
‘By combining traditional felting techniques and fine art I have
been able to channel my work in a different way. The coloured fibres
replace the brush strokes. When the wool is worked in to felt using
hot, soapy water the results are striking in their vibrancy much like
a loosely worked acrylic or oil painting.’
If you are interested in commissioning a piece of artwork or would
like to join one of Jacqui’s workshops please email her for more
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