Sunday 28 February 2021

Chinese New Year - February 2021

Chinese New Year 2021, the Year of the Ox, was a revelation for some of our artists, who made a journey through the colour red, dragon possibilities, and tried to catch movement with the traditional fan dance. One of the dragons is made of fabric scraps and (dragon stones?) pebbles collected from ancient landscapes, and the other, breathing golden fire, is an interpretation from a historic candlestick. "Lucky" fish were pressed into service from a pond and wish everyone Kung_hey_fat_Choy or Happy New Year! One of our artists reflected the disappointments of Chinese New Year in the time of coronavirus. We all learnt about the fascinating traditions of Chinese New Year, and for those who watched on the internet, it was particularly moving to see the socially distanced community dances performed and filmed by the Chinese community in Southampton. We very much hope that next year the celebrations can be carried out together in the normal way, and we look forward to going to watch and hopefully sketch.

Images above by Diane Umemoto (left)and Janet Payne (right)

Image above by Avis Dennis

Image above by Gill Steiner

Images below by Priscilla Worley (left) and Sue Lees (right, also last two images)

Tuesday 2 February 2021

February Theme: Chinese New Year February 12 2021

Red, red, red we pass through depressing dull grey days, what could be better than the dazzling colours of the Chinese New Year to cheer ourselves up?  The key date this year is February 12th, when the Year of the Ox begins.  Although London's CNY celebrations are going to be online this year, we are sure that our artists are going to be able to make great pieces with this theme.   CNY is amongst other things, all about colour: principally red, strident scarlets, vermillions, cadmium reds, with gold - or yellow -  with purples and greens as a supporting cast.   Collage, tissue paper, possibly supported by actual CNY papers (obtainable online) at one end of the continuum, to drawing (marker pens?) and painting at the other end.

This year the street celebrations involving actual Chinese dragons, etc., won't be taking place, but various organisations will be doing things online here:   and here:

There will be a mass of images on the internet at during CNY.

It is also possible that local Chinese shops and restaurants may be decorated traditionally, and artists may know of these and be able to walk to them to sketch or take photographs.

Certain plants, flowers, and fruit are also part of the tradition and some details can be found

Some of these are easily obtainable - oranges, tangerines, narcissi, anything red.

Chinese New Year is also known as the Spring Festival, which includes returning to see relatives.

 We hope that these themes  will prove inspiring!   Please send your interpretations by 23 February  to Sue at: