Uplifted by the blues

Walk On by Bridget Heriz, at The Cut Arts Centre, Halesworth, until October 9.An exhibition, inspired by a blues song, might have resulted in a melancholy experience for the visitor but Bridget Heriz's two and three dimensional work left me uplifted, and feeling as though I should stride, march or dance my way down the New Cut in Halesworth.

Walk On by Bridget Heriz, at The Cut Arts Centre, Halesworth, until October 9.

An exhibition, inspired by a blues song, might have resulted in a melancholy experience for the visitor but Bridget Heriz's two and three dimensional work left me uplifted, and feeling as though I should stride, march or dance my way down the New Cut in Halesworth.

The work is based on drawings made in sketchbooks over the last two years, and includes sculptures of card, wall plates of terracotta and drawings of groups of figures portrayed in crayon, ink, pastel, watercolour, and gouache.

The card sculptures are intriguing constructions, held together and embellished with wire. Cleverly constructed, the flat pieces of re-used card and the odd toilet roll tube, have been formed into free standing models of lithe figures pushing against the wind (Fugitive), or a figure rushing forward in greeting (Arrived ) with arms stretched behind, like a child dancing or spinning in a playground.


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Although unusual, and an eye-catching talking point, these four figures displayed on plinths, didn't move me as much as the watercolours, in palest colours, of rounded naked figures frolicking (Party), or the group standing talking together (Decision time). It was also a pleasant challenge to spend time identifying the emotion displayed or the reason for the figures' poses before successfully checking your guess against the list of titles of the fifty-odd works on display.

Amongst the larger paintings was Exodus, a brown against black drawing, in pastels, of a group of adults and children walking purposefully across the page, Dance where, in vivid red and green, naked dancers move with fingers splayed and Walk On, three purple figures, bodies silhouetted by the white light. Again, imagining the narrative became part of the experience of viewing the exhibition.

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Bridget Heriz's exhibition has voluptuous and slim figures standing, walking, running, chasing, fleeing, dancing or moving in some way. It could be exhausting to view, but actually proves to be both absorbing and invigorating, with enough variety in technique to prevent the single subject matter from becoming overwhelming or monotonous.

Rachel Sloane

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