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Stephen Pinnell: Waiting for the Miracle
- 13 November 2014
Waiting for the Miracle, a new exhibition of paintings and mixed-media works created by local artist Stephen Pinnell is set to go on show at Gallery One, the community gallery at Touchstones Rochdale.
Stephen was born in Bristol and studied art at Cheltenham Art College and Falmouth School of Art before completing a Masters degree at Leeds Metropolitan University. Stephen moved to Todmorden in 1981 and became a primary school teacher in Rochdale with a career spanning 28 years.
Stephen chose to be a primary teacher, rather than a teacher or lecturer in art because he wanted to keep the two strands of his life separate. However, with hindsight, Stephen says, "The children I have taught have been an enormous influence on my painting – both in terms of their artwork and in the way they see things, the way they think".
Speaking about his work Stephen added: "Some of the paintings refer to the famous series of apparitions at Lourdes or to the less well known apparitions at Garabandal in Spain in the 1960s."?Hence the title of the exhibition, Waiting for the Miracle.
Whilst not religious himself, Stephen utilises some of the visual language and mythology of Christianity in his work, a language and mythology that he grew up with.
He sees this as providing something more coherent, wondering whether the development of a more secular society is linked to perceived 'difficulty' in understanding some contemporary Western art. He says, "For centuries Christianity furnished Western artists (not just artists) with a mythological "language" which was spoken and read by all. The demise of a common mythological language not only condemns art to fragmentation and obscurity (as each artist or group of artists tries to construct his or her own language) but what is worse, literally renders some thoughts unthinkable."
Visually, Stephen's biggest influences are artists such as Robert Rauschenberg, Alan Davie and Joseph Beuys. He says that like them, he is trying to build a visual language out of seemingly fragmented images. So expect vivid colour and the incorporation of objects and photographic images into paintings in this vibrant exhibition.
Waiting for the Miracle opens on Saturday 15 November and is on show until 14 February 2015.
Gallery One is the community gallery at Touchstones Rochdale and is dedicated to exhibitions by people and groups who live or work in the borough of Rochdale. The exhibitions in Gallery One are very varied, reflecting the range of interests and talent that exist in the borough. Proposals are welcome from individuals, groups and organisations and are reviewed and selected by an independent community panel.
Touchstones Rochdale is managed by the Link4Life Cultural Trust and is located on The Esplanade, Rochdale, OL16 1AQ. We are open Tuesday to Saturday 10am-5pm. Admission is free. For further information call 01706 924492 or visit www.link4life.org/touchstones