Award winner to stage first exhibition

Artist Eleanor Watson, the current holder of the prestigious Jonathan Vickers Fine Art Award, will be holding an exhibition of the paintings she has produced since her arrival in Derbyshire at New Court Gallery at Repton School, from today until March 24.

The biennial Award, administered by Foundation Derbyshire, brings a rising artist to Derbyshire to produce work inspired by the county’s landscape, heritage and people.

The continuing theme of the award is Sense of Place, inspired by the people, landscape and heritage of Derbyshire. For the seventh award there will be a particular focus on The Changing Faces of Derbyshire.

Eleanor said: “I am thoroughly thrilled to be the seventh winner of the prestigious Jonathan Vickers Fine Art Award.  I have been in the county for over four months now and I’m excited to be exhibiting the first paintings I’ve produced.

“Having undertaken  wide-ranging  research I have now decided to explore the many amazing and diverse female figures from the history of Derbyshire – creating work which will reflect something of the women I have chosen to depict through paintings of interiors, landscapes, still lives and film-stills.”

Eleanor, who comes from Surrey, has recently completed the Drawing Year at the Royal Drawing School and graduated from Wimbledon College of Art in 2012 with a First Class Honours BA in Painting. Eleanor has previously exhibited in London, Miami and New York.

During her residency, Eleanor will produce a portfolio of new work for solo exhibitions at Derby Museum and Art Gallery and at the University of Derby. She will also contribute to teaching within the University of Derby’s College of Arts and, working with Derby Museums, develop a toolkit for schools, supported by funding from Rolls-Royce plc.

Collaboration with the University of Derby’s College of Arts will enable art students to gain valuable insight from the experience and practices of a working artist.

The final exhibition will be held at Derby Museum and Art Gallery from September 15 to  November 19.

The gallery Repton School is open from Monday to Saturdays from 10am to 4pm.