Sidmouth School of Art celebrates the changing of the season and local biodiversity with Sidmouth Fungi by local photographer Bob Reynolds
Bob Reynolds new work for Sidmouth Wallspace is a magical, mysterious ethereal work highlighting the beauty and diversity of locally found fungi.
Sidmouth School of Art’s latest billboard artwork Sidmouth Fungi is currently being exhibited at the Sidmouth Wall space public art gallery overlooking the Ham East carpark to coincide with the start of the Sidmouth Science Festival who are hosting a Fungi Hunt, such is the curiosity and interest in the fascinating biodiversity in our local woodlands.
This series of fungi, all found in the Sidmouth area, taps into the magnetism of mycology – the biological study of mushrooms. A fascination which flourishes as more is discovered about them, whether as foods, medicines, poisons, immune boosters or psychoactive effect. The impact of fungi on humans is long documented through literature, art and culture.
The artist’s interest was sparked years ago by attending a fungi foray and accelerated in the Covid lockdown spending many hours during and since, walking the local moors and woods. The discovery of the variety and beauty of the species, depending on the season, that are there if you look, has been documented through the photographer’s lens. The artwork captures the diversity of form and colour and is carefully curated to create a magical and enchanting fungi tapestry.
“With each trip, the challenge of locating, identifying and photographing them is exciting and rewarding, I hope that through sharing some images that others can see and appreciate the positive qualities of the humble mushroom.” Bob Reynolds
Bob lives in Sidmouth, is an Associate of the Royal Photographic Society and a Member of the Sidmouth Photographic Club. This piece was part of a collaborative project with Sidmouth Photographic Club which focused on people and place, mentored by artist-photographer Robert Darch.
Sidmouth School of Art have produced a special A5 postcard of the artwork which names each species on the back of it and has gifted a number of postcards to those booked onto the Science Festival Fungi Hunt with Michael Jordan from the Fungi Conservation Trust on Saturday 14th October. Postcards are also available to buy from Sidmouth Tourist Information Centre.
Sidmouth Science Festival Organiser Dave Bramley commented, “ It is great to be collaborating with Sidmouth School of Art, in this case bringing science and art together, a powerful combination raising awareness, improving knowledge and learning about the properties and beauty of fungi through the photographers lens.”
David Shrigley, Artist and Co-Founder of Sidmouth School of Art added: “It’s really inspiring to see another project up on the billboard which resulted from our previous Sense of Place project with renowned Artist Photographer Robert Darch. Robert mentored local photographers, all members of Sidmouth Photographic Club, sharing his skills and knowledge with them to realise
their own new photographic artworks that convey their connections with Sidmouth and what is special about it to them”.
More details about the project can also be found here Wallspace: Sidmouth Fungi | Sidmouth School Of Art (sidmouthart.org)
A new film short Sidmouth Fungi With Bob Reynolds, Videography by Simon Vacher, about the work can be viewed here
SSA is constantly evolving new partnerships and collaborations to engage more people in creative art projects that are relevant and connect with different groups and in some way are “Making Sidmouth the Artwork”.
This latest wallspace is part of a suite of new projects designed and delivered in partnership with Sidmouth School of Art and Sidmouth Coastal Community Hub through the Sidmouth Makes Art (SMArt) project. Follow Sidmouth School of Art on Facebook and Instagram @sidmouthschool_art for latest updates.
Sidmouth Fungi image of the new artwork in situ attached Photo Credit: Sarah Hall
There are a range of new billboard artwork projects in the pipeline …Watch This Wallspace!
Sidmouth Wall Space repurposes an unloved wall overlooking a car park in Sidmouth, Devon – it showcasescommunity/public art that residents and visitors enjoy and are inspired by and engaged with and that add sustainable social value in parallel:
• connecting and collaborating with arts and cultural groups/organisations
• focusing on engaging young people and adults to develop confidence in their creativity
• working with people to involve them and their ideas, discovering and nurturing talent
• building a sense of wellbeing through shared identity/belonging and creative place-making
Sidmouth School of Art is about creativity and wellbeing through art and culture. Co-founder David Shrigley, OBE: “Art is about discovering what something means to you and expressing what you think and feel.”
Each billboard has a process behind it, working with artists and young people or local groups to build confidence, create an open access platform for public art and share skills. This is because we value that: Encouraging and engaging with art and our creative selves is a path to wellbeing and happiness.
Sidmouth Wallspace is a physical public outdoor gallery for everyone at the Ham carpark, Sidmouth, where the work of different artists using a variety of mediums are presented. Our project website provides a digital platform where work is also presented in our online galleries www.sidmouthart.org
The Sidmouth Makes Art (SMArt) project is funded by the Arts Council England.
Arts Council England is the national development agency for creativity and culture. We have set out our strategic vision in Let’s Create that by 2030 we want England to be a country in which the creativity of each of us is valued and given the chance to flourish and where everyone of us has access to a remarkable range of high quality cultural experiences. We invest public money from Government and The National Lottery to help support the sector and to deliver this vision. www.artscouncil.org.uk
Following the Covid-19 crisis, the Arts Council developed a £160 million Emergency Response Package, with nearly 90% coming from the National Lottery, for organisations and individuals needing support. We are also one of the bodies responsible for administering the Government’s unprecedented Culture Recovery Fund. Find out more at www.artscouncil.org.uk/covid19.
The project also receives support from Sidmouth Town Council and a variety of local funders.
Contact details: firstname.lastname@example.org
Mobile: 07881 585395
Sidmouth School of Art is a registered charity in England and Wales (1199539)