Friday 20 December 2013

Melanie Ezra & Lesley Cartwright - Bridging the gap

Lesley Cartwright
Today the artworks from the Cardboard City exhibition are hidden away, the first from Lesley Cartwright (above) is under the arches of Cannon St Bridge, beside the legendary Clink Prison. Our second offering is snuggled down in a phone box atop Southwark Bridge where Swansea Superblogger, Melanie Ezra, is calling collect.

Calling Melanie Ezra
Although Ezra has been exhibiting with us for a relatively short time she has made a noticeable impact on our artistic landscape. Never one to let geography get in the way, she can often be found traversing from her home in Wales to the south east of England, all in the name of Art.

Melanie Ezra
At heart she is a photo-artist and printmaker who works using collage by deconstructing her own original, previously unpublished, photographs. Her collages and prints challenge ideas on truth and memory, and ultimately question the veracity of the nature of the way we record Time.

Melanie Ezra - Blind Eye
Even though Ezra's work has been exhibited around the world in these few short years it is on her own doorstep where her enthusiasm is most keenly felt. We have seen the benefit recently with more and more Swansea artists participating in our exhibitions. She understands our ethos at CollectConnect, recently she responded to our exhibition brief with a piece on her blog,

"Art should not be elitist and exclusive. This exhibition is about restoring an imbalance and giving the right of inclusivity to anybody and everybody who wants it. These little artworks in their throwaway homes will be there for everybody regardless of the glittering chaos that takes place around them in the build up to Christmas."

Lesley Cartwright - Cardboard City
Lesley Cartwright is a new artist in our ranks but one I'm really happy to get acquainted with. She was born in Liverpool but later moved to Essex to run a Hostel for homeless teenagers. She made her name in the commercial graphic field and music photography until she developed MS and now paints portraits from her Billericay studio.

Cartwright has had first hand experience, unlike many of us, as she was homeless with a small child in her twenties. Her lifeline was a live-in job at the aforementioned hostel so she feels a resonance with the exhibition's theme of 'Together Alone'. Lets hope she will be a regular contributor to our exhibitions and that she'll never be cast adrift again, at least not artistically.


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