My work is concerned with concepts relating landscape to metaphysical thought about place and space. My practice is concerned with nature, transitional space and the phenomenology of place, questioning the boundary between representation and pure abstraction, and expanding the notion of how land and seascape are explored and understood.
The coastline, the edge of landscape, is a place where perception can be transformed and altered by memory and imagination. It is at a point where the veil between the two worlds of land and sea is the thinnest, exploring both the conscious and unconscious. It is a place where we make the greatest connection.
My creative practice stems from a fascination for this spiritual connection between land and sea, sea and sky, nature and mythology. My paintings are not a direct representation but more an embodiment of a sense of place through a continual dialogue between real and imagined geographies. Anomalies in land and seascapes harbour portals into other worlds through cracks, crevices, fissures, alignment of stones, sea caves, and the shoreline – thin places.
A close relationship with the Gower coast has provoked an on-going series of work, most recently paintings have been inspired by the poetry of Vernon Watkins, the Welsh metaphysical poet who also lived on the coast of Gower. The concept of space, both actual and pictorial; implications of time and space, movement through shifting tidelines, weather and light materialise in these paintings. Watkin’s work responds to our coastal landscape, through experience, myth and legend. I am fascinated by combining these two art forms, responding to his poetry through line, colour, texture and shape. I know the landscape of Gower well, having lived here most of my life and this helps me to work through sketches and paintings both in the environment but also through memory and imagination back in the studio.
CV & Education
I am a professional Artist and Lecturer. After completing my BA Hons at Canterbury(1982 – 85) and subsequently teaching at The Swansea College of Art, I did a Post Graduate Art Teacher’s Certificate PGATC in 1987.
I have since taught Art and Design in both Secondary Education, where I was Head of Art and Design (1990 -2000) at Bishopston Comprehensive and then in Further Education, teaching A level Fine Art and Foundation Degree Level at Gower College, Swansea (2000 – 2013). I completed my MA in Fine Art: Contemporary Dialogues from the Swansea College of Art, UWTSD, 2016, for which I was awarded a Distinction. I have since been a visiting lecturer at Swansea College of Art.
I have moderated on the AQA A Level Art And Design and GCSE examinations since 2000.
Currently I am a Lead Creative Agent for The Arts Council of Wales, in which I facilitate Arts projects across the curriculum, in both primary and secondary schools.
I am also Events Organiser for The Friends of The Glynn Vivian Gallery.
Primarily a painter, I work in a variety of media, including glass and ice.
An article about my current art work which showed in Landforms at Boundary Art, Cardiff, has recently been published in Wales Art Review
I currently have a solo exhibition entitled Music of Colours until June 1st 2019 at Oriel Lliw, which is showing some of my current series of work responding to the poetry of Vernon Watkins.
I was recently awarded First Prize in The Queen Street Gallery Open Competition, and will be having a solo show at the Gallery in February 2020.
I currently have a studio at Elysium Gallery Artist Studios, Orchard Street, Swansea
Kate Bell – Artist CV
14, Southward Lane,
Swansea, SA3 4QE
2014-2016 MA in Fine Art, Contemporary Dialogues Distinction
Swansea College of Art. University of Wales Trinity Saint David
1986-1987 Post Graduate Degree in Art Teaching PGATC, University of Wales, Cardiff
1982-1985 BA Honours in Art/ English, Christchurch College, University of Kent Canterbury
2018 – present Visiting Lecturer, Swansea College of Art, UWTSD
2017 – present Lead Creative Agent, Arts Council of Wales
2000 – 2013 Lecturer in Fine Art A Level and Foundation, Gower College, Swansea
1991-2000 Head of Art & Design, Bishopston Comprehensive School, Swansea
1989 – 1990 Head of Art & Design, Ffynone House School Swansea
1987- 1989 Teacher of Art and Drama, Cranbrook School, Kent
1985 – 1986 Lecturer in Art and Design, Swansea Institute of Higher Education
2000 –2016 AQA GCSE & A Level Art & Design Examiner/ Moderator
2017 – present Lead Creative Agent for The Arts Council of Wales
2014 – present Events Secretary for The Friends of The Glynn Vivian Art Gallery, Swansea
Music of Colours. Solo Exhibition, Oriel Lliw, March - June 2019
Open Queen Street Gallery, Neath Feb 2019
Swansea Open 2018, Glynn Vivian Art Gallery, Swansea
Grey Dog, Winter Exhibition, Mumbles
Oriel Q Winter Exhibition, Narberth,
Landforms, Autumn/Winter Exhibition Boundary Art, Cardiff
Somethings We Forgot to Remember, Swansea Museum
Alumni Painting Exhibition as part of BEEP Painting Prize, Swansea
Grey Dog, Mumbles Summer Exhibition
We are from further south than you, Undegun, Wrexham
ORIEL CRIC OPEN, Crickhowell,
M.A.D.E Cardiff, FLOURISH Spring Exhibition, Roath, Cardiff
LONDON WELSH CONTEMPORARY ART EXHIBITION, London Welsh Centre
International Women’s Day, Swansea Artists @Cinema & Co & The Welfare Swansea
CONTINUUMS, Divergent Contemporary Art Collective, Kings Street Gallery, Carmarthen
SWANSEA OPEN 2017, The Glynn Vivian Art Gallery, Swansea
THE UA OPEN, United Society of Artists, The Menier Gallery, London
SHORELINES, Little Stone Gallery, Mumbles
Open Studios – Troublemakers Festival, Elysium Gallery Studios, Orchard Street Swansea
WMD Women of Many Dimensions Cinema & Co Swansea
Welcome to Tata, Port Talbot
Painter’s Studio Exhibition, BEEP Wales Contemporary Art Prize
Glynn Vivian Summer Exhibition, Swansea
Divided by The Meltwater, Swansea College of Art
MADE, MA Final Exhibition Volcano Theatre, Swansea
Reconstructing Ourselves, AMBU, Swansea College of Art
Welsh Sketchbooks Exhibition, Coleg Sirgar, Carmarthen
Reconstructing Ourselves, AMBU, Morriston Hospital
A Victorian Tapestri, Tapestri, Swansea
Divided by The Meltwater, Group Show, Petroc College, Bideford, Devon
2004 -7 Swansea Open, Glynn Vivian Art Gallery