October hosts a month-long celebration of all things art, thanks to The Big Draw Festival. This year’s theme is Play, and to join in with the fun, The National Football Museum are hosting three events during the October half term (22nd – 26th October).
Artist Gary Armer is taking up a week-long artist-in residency at the museum. Inspired by Dutch Golden Age still life paintings, Gary will create a still life painting but with a football twist in the event ‘Score Draw with Gary Armer’. Instead of depicting the traditional items such as flowers, musical instruments and fruit that are usually found in still life paintings (although there will actually be a touch of ‘tangerine’!), Gary will be painting objects in the National Football Museum’s collection.
A lifelong Blackpool fan, Gary has chosen three Stanley Matthews objects to portray: Stanley Matthews’ match worn football boots and shirt from the 1953 FA Cup Final, and the Ballon D’or trophy awarded to Matthews in 1956. The objects are actually on loan to the museum and so with the kind permission of the lenders (who were pleased that the objects would be used to engage with visitors), the objects have been set up on a plinth for Gary to recreate using oil paints on canvas. Gary is at the museum painting from Monday to Friday – why not come down and see how this piece progresses? If it is anything like the process of another painting entitled Tangerine Treasure by Gary Armer (below), we are in for an exciting week!
Of course we want everyone to have the chance to create their own football still life artwork inspired by Gary’s stint in the museum, so artist Annette Cobley will be on hand at the museum from Wednesday 24th – Friday 26th with various handling objects you can recreate in the activity ‘Still Life, Fast Football’! Not content with two events, on Thursday 25th October the folks behind Bands F.C. will also be at the museum, and are inviting visitors to create their own football club/band mash up badge inspired by the Bands F.C. exhibition currently showing at the museum.
I am really pleased that the National Football Museum has been able to sign up to the Big Draw Festival this year and host a number of events, thanks to the Art of Football project. You can hear Gary talk about his stint at the museum in this teaser video, which was filmed by our Digital Learning Coordinator David Mansell.
At the time of posting this, we are now on Day 2 of Gary’s artist-in-residency and the visitor engagement so far has been fantastic – with some visitors coming back later in the day to see the progress, and many stopping to talk to Gary about the process and his other artworks.