Lunar Incantations

Kay Gibbons exhibition Bampton. Photo Mr G

An artist’s response to lunar imagery in T S Eliot’s  poetry.

Last week, I went with my friend Julia to an art exhibition in Bampton, West Oxfordshire. It was arranged by the West Ox Arts as part of the Oxfordshire Arts Week.
The reason for our visit was that our mutual friend Kay Gibbons was one of the exhibitors and we wanted to support her. It was also an opportunity to look at high quality art by talented exhibitors in a beautiful and open surroundings.

Kay is a multidisciplinary artist, working often, though not exclusively in sculptured glass.
Her current exhibition is  called LUNAR INCANTATIONS, an artist’s response to lunar imagery in the poetry of T S Eliot.
(we have already posted some of this work on my blog).
Here is what Kay has written about this.

“How wonderful it is to be weaving word and image together in my Art weeks exhibition on display
at the West Ox Arts Gallery in Bampton where I am exhibiting with other talented artists from Oxfordshire .
My artistic journey has been one of ‘ebb and flow’ responding to and being determined by the directional pull of circumstance and opportunity. Similarly with the moon as it journeys through its different phases .

During lockdown I became reacquainted with the poetry of T S Eliot .It inspired me to create small watercolour paintings and drawings often incorporating calligraphy . With Artweeks looming I was inspired to bring together my love of creativity with Eliot’s poetry and of the moon to explore the Lunar imagery in T S Eliots poem Rhapsody on a Windy Night .
I have interpreted this using glass and also calligraphy .
My exhibition is innovative, colourful and lively.

With this we agree and my friend Julia has written a comment:

Glorious drive across the Chilterns at the weekend to meet my Instagram hero and her wonderful exhibition at @westoxartsgallery on opening day. I was inspired by Kay’s freedom and humour which plays out through her abstracts and her evocative interpretation of a TS Elliot poem in leaded and copper foiled pieces, and exquisite water colour and pen work. Thank you Kay for the laughs and hugs and reigniting my love for colour, transparency, and stained glass “

Needless to say, we were both tempted to buy a piece of art.

In love with this little glass abstract which is coming home to me at the end of the exhibition.

photo: Mr G

Mine is a present for someone so I am keeping it under wraps for now.!

Kay’s art has shone a light into the soul of the world with her combination of visual and the poetic. T. S. Eliot deserves illustration and a new way of entering into his depth of meaning. Equally, to watch an artist develop and explore life through shape and colour and faith is exciting. It shines a light into my soul as it does in any who encounter and sit with her work.
So much in life is depressing and frightening, not least because of power struggles which ultimately destroy everything in their wake. So we need a way to lift the Spirit and point us away from destruction to creativity and love. Art, Music, creative writing, photography, caring for the natural world are, in themselves incantations, cries to a better way. Incantation is word derived from Latin and means to ‘enchant’, perhaps even to cast a spell. It is associated with magic but poetry has its own meaning of what that means. Often to say something is magic is to point to a new experience of brilliance.  Allowing a creative act to work on your own creative spirit can easily be experienced as something magical, amazing, beautiful and, if we let it, life enhancing.It turns us from despair to hope.

Kay understands the way in which art speaks to the soul, to the heart of our being. For me, of course, this is about taking me right to the heart of God.

Photo: Kay Gibbons

“The joy of art is that we all see different stories in the one canvas – the one piece of glass, the one mural and so it goes .”

Exhibiting at WestOxArts GalleryBampton 29 April-3 June
as part of Oxfordshire Artweeks.

Not many will be able to go but you can discover more of Kay’s work on Instagram.


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