In the second installment of our guest blogs, we speak to Mick Oxley – a Northumberland-based artist with a gallery in Craster.
What made you become an artist?
A change in life circumstances, a move to an incredibly beautiful place, time, peace and an inspirational teacher.
When did you open your gallery in Craster?
The gallery opened in June 2008. Before that I was selling through other galleries and at various national exhibitions.
Tell us about what you are working on at the moment …
Currently I am working on a series of monochrome images. To me, they sum up the savagely beautiful yet sometimes harsh conditions we experience up here in north Northumberland. Also, I am exploring the possibilities of working with Perspex to create minimalistic seascapes.
What is your favourite thing about Craster?
To be almost surrounded by the sea in all its moods.
Of your pieces of work, which are you most proud of?
I have a few that represent my development as an artist – from early representations of rock pools, to seascapes and some of my very textured work.
Who or what inspires you?
I draw heavily on what I can see, feel, smell and breathe. Artists who have influenced me are Len Tabner and JMW Turner.
What memorable responses have you had to your work?
Customers crying in response to seeing some paintings…I hope for the right reasons!
Which galleries and private collections around the world are your artworks displayed?
The Public Catalogue Foundation have one of my paintings logged. It now belongs in a collection owned by Grey College, Durham. My work has been exhibited in New Zealand and Armenia and is in private collections worldwide.
What other gifts do you sell in the gallery?
Jewellery, textiles, photography, pottery, glass, furniture, blacksmith’s art, driftwood art, candles and sculptural wood pieces.
What’s your favourite thing to do in Northumberland?
To watch the skies and breath in the pure air.
Where would you recommend first time visitors go?
Northumberland is a doing kind of place, so I would say, no matter what it is you do, just get out and do it!