“What kind of biscuits would you like? … Jaffa Cakes?…Everyone likes Jaffa Cakes”
Maurian Venables invited me into her home, waving me past her pot plants, her old scooter, dusty in the hall way. We climbed the narrow staircase. The plastic which covers the painted wooden stairs crinkled under foot.
The Kitchen at the top of the stairs filled with wires and plants, cuttings in jam jars on the window sill in the sun. Family photographs decorate the pine sideboard, Maurian with shaped 1950s eyebrows stares out from a black and white print.
The kettle is boiled and packets of Rich Tea biscuits and Jaffa Cakes are fetched from tidy cupboards. We sit at her small table separated by leaves of a climbing plant which has a long Latin name which she cannot remember now. Her art work never displayed before sits resting against the worktop, hundreds of photographs of pieces that she works at continuously are neatly stored in a blue folder.
This lady with neatly arranged grey hair, a string of pearls around her neck, all flowers and love of tea and porcelain, produces wonderful psychedelic designs. I ask her how does she design such wonderful pieces, she takes one hand and taps her chest, ‘from here’ she says. She works in her kitchen at her lap top wired up to her television to help her eyes. In years gone by Maurian worked in pen and ink, designing lettering and posters now she uses Photoshop in which she manipulates colours and shapes producing engaging abstract work.
Today has been a wonderful surprise, I look forward to working further with Maurian who will be exhibiting at the Free Space Gallery next year so watch this space.