Last November, a group of five women made a cold and crispy journey to Coney Island all for the purpose of their art. And this week, you can see what they experienced for yourself as the girls hold their very own exhibition 'CONEY' at The Hyde Bridge Gallery.
Aideen Connolly, Medbh Gillard, Diane Roemer, Lorna Watkins and Emma Stroude embarked on a self-discovering journey to the remote island one year ago. The artists had met at various drawing sessions in The Model before realising they were the perfect fit to undertake such a project together, despite being so different. Emma, one of the artists presenting at the exhibition, said: "I would say that was the catalyst, . We wanted to do something together and we knew there was a house on the island with two studios attached to it. We applied to hold the exhibition at the Hyde Bridge but we said before we got accepted we would go on the journey regardless." She added: "We are all quite different. We explored the island and we were out every day with our sketch books. Diane even held a workshop where she taught us how to mix paints so we were able to apply that straight to our work." During their four day stay, the friends spent time in the two studios as well as exploring the island's sand flats. They often went their separate ways, meeting in the evenings to discuss their experiences over dinner. Emma said the group "craved" being alone while on the island. "It was really like a journey of self-discovery in one way," she said. "But I think this exhibition has really allowed us to get to know one another and cement our friendship." 'CONEY' starts at The Hyde Bridge Gallery tonight (Tuesday) and runs until November 29th. Its official opening is this Thursday at 6pm. The exhibition features drawings, paintings, sculptures, mixed media and print.
Emma said it promises to resurrect memories for people who have visited the island, and tempt those who haven't to experience its beauty for themselves.