Then & Now

Gallery 1

We’ve taken some of the most beautiful pieces from the St Helens Town collection, Pilkingtons collection and The World of Glass collection, and displayed them alongside pieces from creatives working in St Helens right now. It’s a real beauty of an exhibition this one.  

Sarah Gilman

Gallery 2

Sarah Gilman is a painter currently based in the Merseyside area. Gilman studied Fine Art Painting (BA Hons) at University Centre St Helens and graduated in 2018 with First Class Honours. She has exhibited both locally and nationally since 2017 and was awarded First Prize at St Helens Open Arts Prize 2019. Gilman’s painting practice explores the relation of trompe l’oeil to the genre of still-life painting. The French term meaning ‘to deceive the eye’ is used to describe paintings that are intended to fool the viewer into believing, if only for a moment, that what they see is the projection of a three dimensional object into real space, rather than an illusion held on the surface of a flat plane. Directly influenced by the paintings of 17th century still-life painters, such as Cornelius Gijsbrechts and Samuel van Hoogstraten, Gilman, however, situates her painting within contemporary discourses surrounding the still-life genre.

Through the looking Glass

Gallery 3

Temporary Closure on Wednesday 11th and Thursday 12th May.

Once through the looking glass, familiar reality recedes. In the very depths of our imagination we step through a portal into what may be a dream, or maybe the underworld, or the heavens. In a world of universal myths, of fairy tales, nothing is quite what it seems: logic, inverted, fails. Perceptions are distorted, blurring object and image, substance and illusion, sleep and wakefulness, in this strange and multiple world: a nonsensical drama peopled by unlikely characters. In this reflection of taken-for-granted reality we become aware of the days slipping through our fingers like sand. The very relationship between past, present and future comes into question: time and mirrors fragment. Our hearts are frozen, we are running out of time, can we, should we, will we, awake?