Starting the year with something new

We start our year with a solo exhibition that has been five years in the making but only metres away from the gallery.

Painter, Steve des Landes has lived close to the Williamson Art Gallery for several years and won the Williamson Open in 2015. Despite showing his work elsewhere in Liverpool and London, he has not had a solo show in Wirral and we are delighted to open our involvement with Wirral’s 2018 Year of Culture and Creativity with his solo exhibition Un-settled. We are also proud to be part of Liverpool 2018, the beginning of ten years of culture, creativity and new visitors to the Liverpool City Region.

Adam and Eve by SDL
He has created the works for Un-settled, working diligently in his studio over the past five years. His work reflects his emotional journey from a childhood in coastal Southport and the significant influences of an urban adulthood in Liverpool and Birkenhead.

Colin Simpson, principal museums officer for the Wirral Museums Service who has curated this exhibition says of Steve’s work:-
“Constantly aware of the passage of time, Steve des Landes has developed and grown in the last few years of dedicated work, making paintings that continue to intrigue. They burrow into bizarre corners of life while appearing straightforward. The people shown live their lives, but there is always a feeling of another world not seen, shadows falling across the eyes betraying secrets, or at the very least thoughts, yet to be revealed. Nobody in these paintings is quite comfortable: therein lies their tension and their fascination. They are unsettled and they communicate their restlessness to us.”
SDL by James Deegan
It is clear, in preparing the exhibition that this marks a significant moment in his artistic life as a mature artist when he is saying “I am here, I am part of the community. This is who I am. It is unsettling but necessary”.
In addition to "un-settled" the exhibition programme opens with works from Will Penn and photographs of the people of the Williamson by photographer, James Deegan (including a portrait of Steve des Landes).
The Williamson is currently closed but will reopen on the 10th of January with "un-settled" opening to the public on the 13th of January. The galleries are open from Wednesday to Sunday from 10am to 5pm, but staff shortages may necessitate early closure of some rooms at the end of the day.

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