The art to see in York this month – February 2016

An extract from Big Daisy by Lesia Davidson. Photograph: Blossom Street Gallery
3 Feb 2016 @ 12.16 pm
| Entertainment

January was a bad month for weather but a good month for art. Now we’re in February and getting more into the swing of 2016, I’m holding out hope it’ll bless us with good things all round.

But until we can control the weather, let’s at least make the most of all the good things we have and, for me, that means all things arty.


Blue Tree Gallery

The Blue Tree Gallery is keeping it in the family this month by hosting Paolo Lazzerini, brother of the current artist-in-residence, Giuliana.

This Tuscan-born painter has exhibited his distinctive landscapes throughout Europe, and has now brought his surreal and atmospheric work to York until March.

Braithwaite Gallery

In the wake of the devastating flood which hit York at the end of last year, the Braithwaite Gallery is holding a fundraising raffle for The York Flood Appeal.

The grand prize is a painting by resident artist, Mark Braithwaite, appropriately named Flood Lights.

The winner will be drawn at the Hold Back the River fundraising concert at York Barbican in March. Tickets cost £2, and are available here.

Blossom Street Gallery

This month Blossom Street Gallery is exhibiting the bold floral images and colourful landscape paintings of Lesia Davidson until the end of the month.

Her work is strong and contemporary, making a colourful statement in a world of texture and movement.

According to McGee

One of the paintings by  David Baumforth in his exhibition Seascapes of the North at According To McGee
One of the paintings by David Baumforth in his exhibition Seascapes of the North at According To McGee

According To McGee’s first exhibition of the year, which runs until March, is set to be a showstopper.

Seascapes of the North is a homecoming exhibition for York-born, award-winning artist David Baumforth. And it does exactly what it says on the tin, offering stunning depictions of northern seascapes in all weathers.

Pyramid Gallery

Some of the Ian Astle photographs at the Pyramid Gallery
Some of the Ian Astle photographs at the Pyramid Gallery

This unobtrusive gem of a gallery on Stonegate offers two very different but equally impressive exhibitions this month.

The first, Three Yorkshire Ceramicists, displays the work of three artists and potters either from or based in the area: Eoghen Bridge, Ben Davies and Anna Whitehouse.

While you’re visiting the Pyramid, why not indulge in a bit of star-spotting in its second exhibition, Rock and Roll Legends.

Photographer Ian Astle gives us an insight into the lives of the big boys and girls of rock and roll through his images, which span a 40-year career. This impressive body of work is guaranteed to impress music and art fans alike.

Norman Rea Gallery

The student-run Norman Rea Gallery at the University of York will also be treating us to two exhibitions this month, with The Forest and Private Territory both running until February 26.

Get involved

As ever, York Art Gallery offers various opportunities this month for you to get involved in making art, whatever your age and interests.

Sculpting animals

A wonderful scupted rabbit by Susan Halls
A wonderful scupted rabbit by Susan Halls

Perhaps inspired by Three Yorkshire Ceramists at the Pyramid Gallery, the BBC’s Great Pottery Throw Down or fond memories of that scene in the film Ghost, you might like to take part in the all-day Potter’s Master Class: Sculpting Animals at the gallery on February 13.

It includes a morning session with Anthony Shaw of the Centre for Ceramic Arts and a practical afternoon exploring techniques with renowned ceramic artist Susan Halls. The £100 fee includes lunch and materials.

Portraits in your pocket

Gaby Lees is hosting an afternoon dedicated to the art of miniature portraiture on February 14.

As well as learning new techniques and spending time with other creative types, this £15 class will teach you a skill which can be used to create personalised gifts just in time for Valentine’s Day.

Art For wellbeing

After the success of last month’s session, Art For Wellbeing returns to the gallery on February 28 with informal practical sessions from 12.30-3.30pm.

No booking is required, just drop in and pay your £5 for access to this guided and sociable artistic event.

Puppet making

Enthuse little artists with a puppet-making workshop on February 15, when they can recreate characters featured in the gallery.

There are two drop-in sessions (11am-1pm + 2-4pm), which promise to be inspiring, educational and good family fun.

Billions of buttons

Artist-led family workshop Family Artists: Billions of Buttons offers drop-in sessions between 11am and 4pm on February 20, when you can meet the artists and get involved in creative activities for all the family.

As you can see, the York art scene forecast looks set fair for the month. As for the weather? Unfortunately, we can’t make any promises.