"I draw from live performances and have worked with the Welsh National Opera since 2005 to producing works that capture the moment and energy of the moving characters on stage.
I also work in portrait, creating drawings and paintings that explore the real and imagined sitter.
My silhouette drawings are site specific and installation based. The works are cut from paper and fabric and suspended in space to create a drawing hangs between the three and two dimensional. The silhouette drawing is an extension from the works on paper, examining the line and subject spatially. The work departs from the paper surface and hovers between drawing and theatrical set. The drawing has developed organically, but is dictated by both the linear grid and the space that it is contained within.
The Book of the Unreal is a personal ongoing project. This is a series of drawings that form a book of imaginary drawings. Animals are humanised and humans take on animalistic behaviours and characteristics. I also plan to create some animated drawings using The Book of the Unreal as a image source."
The Hope sister’s have been creating drawings at the Welsh National Opera since late 2005. Working directly from life, within the hubbub and flurry of live rehearsal, numerous drawings are made. The drawings are ‘live’, of that moment, they reflect the ‘voice’ of the scene and production.
The artists honed their skills at the Prince’s Drawing School, London where they observed in all their subtle variation, gestured and animate forms that gave rise to multiple figure inventions. It was an opportunity to examine a broad repertory of moving figures (dancers, acrobats, wrestlers and actors).
The sisters have exhibited extensively across England, Ireland and Wales. Exhibitions have included Wales Portrait Award 1 and 2, The Jerwood Drawing Prize and The National Eisteddfod. This engagement with the theatrical has led to work with the Monte Carlo Opera, Melbourne Opera, National Theatre of Wales, The Laban and No Fit State Circus.
Elements of theatricality link the works of Nichola Hope and Sarah Hope. In the works, theatricality comes from the subject through the use of composition, gesture, costume and props. Masquerade costume and performance all become elements of identity. On another level, the artist engages with the role of performer through the means in which the figure is represented in an imaginary space.
To draw is to see. Drawing encompasses time. Drawing contains the experience of looking and offers up another view of time. The opera drawings draw on a multitude of moments, they invite us to stop and enter their sense of time. Captured in a static image, the scenes are unfolded, emotions are expressed and memories extracted.
The theatrical artwork acknowledges reality, it allows the viewer to engage with the art form but on another level it involves the representation of things that could never otherwise be perceived. There is a coexistence of fact and fiction. In the works, theatricality comes from the subject through the use of composition, gesture, costume and props. Masquerade costume and performance all become elements of identity. On another level, the artist engages with the role of perfomer through the means in which the figure is represented in an imaginary space.
Their work with the Welsh National Opera has produced a rich, visual documentation of the opera company's history. The works on display are just some of the hundreds of drawings that have been produced during this five year period. read full statement
Qualifications and training
2008 - MA Fine Art Painting, UWIC, Cardiff
2007 - MA Popular Culture, Open University, Cardiff
2005 - New Works, Helmsley Arts Centre, Helmsley, York
2003 - Recent works, South Hill Park, Bracknell
2002 - Cowboy Boots, Memorial Gallery, Yale College, Wrexham
2002 - Solo Show, Gallery on Broadway, Cardiff
2001 - New Works, Wyvern Theatre, Swindon
2012 - Intermezzo : Nichola and Sarah Hope, West Wharf Gallery , Cardiff
2012 - On Performance: Nichola Hope, Sarah Hope, Liam O'Connor, CYFARTHFA CASTLE Museum and Art Galleries, CYFARTHFA CASTLE
2011 - Drawing Welsh National Opera: A Retrospective, Wales Millenium Centre, Cardiff
2011 - UWIC Emerging Artists, Wales Millenium Centre, Wales Millenium Centre, Cardiff
2011 - West Coast Eisteddfod: Welsh Festival of Arts, Barnsdall Arts Park, Los Angeles, USA
2010 - BIG RESIDENCY, Wales Millenium Centre, Cardiff
2010 - Eisteddfod 2010 | The National Eisteddfod of Wales , Blaenau Gwent Eisteddfod, Blaenau Gwent
2010 - On Performance, Theatre Clwyd, Clwyd
2010 - Work Selected for Welsh Artist of the Year 2010, St David's Hall, Cardiff
2009 - Group Anniversary Show, Kooywood Gallery, Cardiff
2009 - Pobl Yng Nghymru / People in Wales, Denbigh Library Gallery, Denbigh
2008 - Group Show, Mumbles Road Gallery, Swansea
2008 - Kooywood Gallery Group Exhibition, Kooywood Gallery, Cardiff
2008 - RE:drawing, Oriel Davies Gallery , Newtown
2008 - The Access All Areas Exhibition, Welsh National Opera, Wales Millenium Centre, Cardiff
2008 - Wales Portrait II, touring show, England and Wales
2007 - A Night At The Opera, Nuneaton Museum and Gallery , England
2007 - Celf Cymreig, Washington Gallery, Penarth, Cf64 2AD
2007 - Welsh National Opera Drawings, Dylan Thomas Centre, Swansea
2006 - Llinellau ac Amgyffrediadau, Cootehill Library Arts Centre, Cootehill, Cavan, Eire
2006 - Paentiadau, Darluniau a Phrintiau Bach/ Paintings, Drawings & Prints of the Smaller Kind, Denbigh Library, Museum and Gallery, Denbigh
2006 - Wales Portrait, touring show, England and Wales
2006 - Young Wales VII, ROYAL CAMBRIAN ACADEMY , Wales
2005 - New Works, Helmsley Arts Centre, York
2004 - Art For Youth Cymru, City Hall, Cardiff
2004 - Focal Mix, Focal Art Festival, Ruthin
2004 - The Big Draw, Oriel Gwyngyll, Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllllantysiliogogogoch
2003 - Bracknell Drawing Open, South Hill Park, Bracknell
2003 - Group show, Gallery on Broadway, Cardiff
2002 - Summer Exhibition, Oriel Plas Y Weddw, Llanbedrog
2000 - CATREFOL, The Point, Cardiff
1999 - Christmas Show, Fisherton Mill Gallery, Salisbury
1998 - Graduate Show, The Gantry, Southampton
1998 - Schema, Angelus Gallery, Winchester
1997 - Myths, Metaphors and Space, Winchester Cathedral, Winchester
1996 - Summer Show, Midhurst Gallery, Midhurst
2013 - Welsh National Opera, Welsh National Opera, Wales Millenium Centre, Cardiff
2012 - Welsh National Opera, Welsh National Opera, Wales Millenium Centre, Cardiff
2011 - Welsh National Opera, Welsh National Opera, Wales Millenium Centre, Cardiff
2010 - Welsh National Opera, Welsh National Opera, Wales Millenium Centre, Cardiff
2009 - Melbourne Opera, Atheneum, Melbourne
2009 - Welsh National Opera, WMC, Cardiff
2008 - Tasmanian Story Telling Festival, The Polish Club, Hobart, Tasmania, Australia
2008 - Welsh National Opera 2008, Welsh National Opera, Cardiff
2007 - Monte Carlo Opera, MC OPERA, MONACO, Monte Carlo
2007 - Welsh National opera 2007, Welsh National Opera, Cardiff
2006 - Welsh National Opera Drawing Studies Jan/Feb/March 2006, WNO, Wales Millennium Centre, Cardiff
2005 - Welsh National Opera Drawing Studies Sept/OCT 2005, WNO, Wales Millennium Centre, Cardiff
Competitions, prizes and awards
2012 - Welsh Artist of The Year exhibition, St David's Hall, Cardiff
2008 - RE:drawing Oriel Davies Open 2008 , Oriel Davies , Newtown
2008 - Wales Portrait Award 2, Touring show, UK
2006 - Oriel Davies Gallery Open, Oriel Davies Gallery, Powys, Cymru / Wales
2006 - Wales Portrait Award Exhibition, Touring exhibition, Wales and England
2006 - Welsh Artist of the Year Competition, Neuad Dewi Sant/ St David's Hall, Caerdydd/ Cardiff
2006 - Young Wales VII, Academi Frenhinol Gymreig The Royal Cambrian Academy, Conwy
1998 - RK Burt Painting Prize, WSA, Winchester
2012 - The Children's Voice: A Definitive Collection of Welsh Nursery Rhymes
2011 - A Welsh Alphabet
2007 - Welsh Country Magazine, Ceredigion, National