Five exhibitions to see this weekend in the Cotswolds

The Wildlife Photography of the Year Exhibition

The Wildlife Photography of the Year Exhibition - Credit: Archant

It’s the start of the new year, and there’s no reason for the winter chill to dissuade you from venturing out and seeing what the Cotswolds has to offer. Here are five exhibitions taking place in and around the Cotswolds this weekend.

Green dragon, Will Jenkins (UK) / Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2014

Green dragon, Will Jenkins (UK) / Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2014 - Credit: Archant

The Wildlife Photographer of the Year

Nature in Art, Gloucester, January 13 - March 15, 2015

Nature in Art will be hosting The Wildlife Photography of The Year exhibition, an inspiring collection of images, which is set to appeal to both art enthusiasts and naturalists alike.

Photogenic plants, animals and landscapes taken from across the globe are all captured in this photographic exhibition of the world’s most striking natural moments, represented by 100 winning and commended entries from the Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition – which is jointly owned by the Natural History Museum and BBC Worldwide.

A component of this year’s show will be the stories accompanying each picture, describing the often remarkable conditions in which the photographers captured their winning shots.

For the largest and most prestigious event of its kind, now in its 50th year, the international jury of experts spent months scrutinising almost 42,000 entries from 96 countries for creative, artistic and technically complex images to find those that they considered powerful, intricate and thought-provoking.

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The 2014 winner was American photographer Michael ‘Nick’ Nichols with his serene black-and-white image of lions resting with their cubs in Tanzania’s Serengeti National Park, The Last Great Picture, which was described as ‘something primal, biblical almost.’

Running for nine weeks, the exhibition promises to offer a glimpse of the natural world never seen before.

For more information, visit: www.soglos.com/culture/27884/Wildlife-Photographer-of-the-Year-exhibition#sthash.2rzVQV27.dpuf

World War One in the Words of Worcestershire People

Worcester City Art Gallery and Museum, Worcester, 25 October 2014 – 14 March 2015

Letters, stories and experiences from the people of Worcestershire are brought together in public for the first time in this exhibition, part of the Worcestershire World War One Hundred project and funded through Heritage Lottery Fund.

Visitors will have the opportunity to explore the words and mementos of Worcestershire people, telling the personal story of World War One. There are first-hand accounts from the front line in diaries kept by soldiers as well as cherished letters telling of a soldier’s bravery and bringing comfort to the families of the deceased who remained at home waiting for news.

Objects on display include a Cello made from an oil can which was played in the trenches alongside the words from Rupert Brookes ‘A little piece of England in a foreign field’, which has its own local connection, published for the first time in Ledbury. Local artefacts have been loaned to the exhibition, including the silver mounted hooves of Jerry, a German horse rescued at the Western Front by the Worcester Regiment, who lived out his life giving rides to local children off Pitchcroft.

The exhibition is open Monday – Saturday, 10.30am – 4.30pm.

For more information, visit www.museumsworcestershire.org.uk

Inspired by Blake: with Philip Pullman, Iain Sinclair and Caspar Henderson

Sheldonian Theatre, Oxford, Sunday January 18, 3–4pm

To coincide with the Museum’s major exhibition, William Blake: Apprentice & Master, Blackwell’s Bookshop and the Ashmolean present Inspired by Blake, a two-week arts festival celebrating the work of one of the country’s best loved poets and artists. The programme includes talks and workshops, panel discussions, music and theatre, encompassing the art,

poetry and philosophy of William Blake.

On Sunday, January 18, there will be a panel discussion examining the many different aspects of William Blake, including his influence on culture and his relevance today. The panel features author Philip Pullman, the President of the Blake

Society; Iain Sinclair, author of Blake’s London; and Caspar Henderson, whose forthcoming book, A New Map of Wonders, explores what it is that makes the world so astonishing.

For more information, visit: www.ashmolean.org/exhibitions/current

A Time and a Place: A look at artists’ residencies in the South West

New Brewery Arts, Cirencester, Saturday January 17 – Sat Mar 21 2015

Janice Botterill has curated the new exhibition A Time and a Place at the New Brewery Arts. The event is an examination of artists’ residencies in the South West and how artists, designers and craft makers use drawing in the creative process.

Janice won the New Curator Open competition, which involved people submitting their own concept, to design, plan and, ultimately present an exhibition at New Brewery Arts. Janice’s fascination with drawing, which led to an investigation of creativity nurtured in residencies, caught the imagination of the judges.

A time and a place brings together a diverse group of artists who have worked in different locations across the South West.

The exhibition is intended as an introduction to this vital aspect of artistic practice. Featuring drawing as a common thread that runs throughout the work, A Time and a Place shows not only the finished outcomes of residencies but the way artists approach a residency; how they begin, how they choose to respond, the works in progress, the plans, the ideas, the thoughts and the conversations.

Exhibiting artists

• Jill Carter, Curious Narratives, Lacock Abbey, Wiltshire (pictured top right)

• Sasha Ward, glassmaker, Kelmscott Manor, Gloucestershire (pictured right)

• Ann-Margreth Bohl, sculptor, Stanton St Bernard, Wiltshire

• Nancy J Clemance and Tara Harland Viney - in collaboration at Marine Theatre, Lyme Regis

• The Semantic Archive - a group residency and exploration of the archive at the Wiltshire and Swindon History Centre

For more information, visit: www.newbreweryarts.org.uk/making-a-visit/main-gallery-exhibitions/a-time-and-a-place#sthash.RCEvqkeq.dpuf

Cirencester’s WW1 Centenary Memorial unveiling

New Brewery Arts, Cirencester, Saturday January 17

A permanent wire flock of homing pigeons, carrying the names of the schools and groups who participated in Cirencester Commemorates, will be affixed to the front of the New Brewery Arts building in the heart of Cirencester.

Cirencester Commemorates, a project funded by a grant of £34,700 from Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF), has given the people of Cirencester opportunities to understand and actively engage with the heritage of the war, uncover its stories and explore what it means to the town today. The unveiling of the First World War Centenary memorial is a fitting culmination of the year-long 2014 programme and is intended to provide a legacy for many years to come.

Hannah Brady, who is part of the team organising the memorial on behalf of New Brewery Arts, said: “This is a wonderful opportunity for the town, and we should be very grateful to be rewarded with such a beautiful permanent memorial. Our yearlong efforts have touched hundreds of people in the local community and this memorial will be a constant reminder of everything we have learnt together.

“The memorial has been inspired both by the past and the present; stories have been taken out of the archives and into the lives of those around us. We hope the memorial will be enjoyed for many years and be a reminder to those around us of the importance of the First World War and what this means to us today.”

For more information, visit: www.newbreweryarts.org.uk