Art Exhibition 2016

Art Exhibition 2017

Welcome to the introduction to The Friends of Holland Park Annual Art Exhibition 2017. This time our goal will be: more red dots.

It has now been five years that I have had the privilege of organising this exhibition. It is always a team effort with my wife and daughter plus the trustees and volunteers. Each year we try to enhance and develop the exhibition by introducing initiatives in order to sell more art. Selling more art means you the artist are happy, and the trustees are delighted that more revenue has been received for the charity.

It is interesting to note that there are very few sales made at the private views; this is unusual. I am an artist and art-gallery owner, and when I arrange exhibitions there are always sales on the private-view night and the red dots kick-start and stimulate the ongoing exhibition. The private-view sales encourage the exhibition visitors to make a purchase ('...look at all the red dots!'). With this in mind, next year we will be introducing an incentive to the guests who attended the private views to make purchases.

It is always important for us to remember how special The Friends of Holland Park Art Exhibition is for many reasons:

•    The venue: the Orangery is one of the most beautiful locations in London for an exhibition.

•    The standard of work is very high.

•    The prices you put on your works are fair and affordable; they provide the visitors with great value.

•    The most important point: this is an exhibition put on by the Friends who are artists for the other Friends and the general public.

Let us, the artists, continue to support each other, generate more sales for each other, and revenue for our charity.

Now to the 2017 exhibition. Negotiations are ongoing for Feature Artist and sponsors; details and all other information should be confirmed by Christmas and included in your Artist letters. The conditions of entry remain unchanged from previous years: Friends who are artists and artists who become Friends are invited to exhibit up to ten works: two framed works to hang on the walls, and up to eight unframed works for display in the portfolio stands, these with a maximum size of 70 x 100cm (including mounts, but no wooden mounts please). Friends are also invited to exhibit up to ten three-dimensional objects such as ceramics, glassware and small sculptures, or enter the mini-mart of small works on offer at £40 and under, including cards and craft items. The minimum price for works in the main exhibition will be £50.

Friends interested in exhibiting in the art exhibition, the mini-mart or both need to register by filling in the order form,which can be downloaded here, and pay the £10 entry fee. Please note that artists who have registered for the main exhibition may also include small works in the mini-mart at no additional cost. Completed order forms should be sent to Rhoddy Wood as soon as possible because space is limited, and when enough artists have registered we cannot accept any more.

Further information on The Friends of Holland Park Art Exhibition may be obtained from me, Gordon French, 19 Kensington Court Place, London, W8 5BJ; tel.:  020 7937 7222;  e-mail:

Let's have a great exhibition with lots of red dots!

Gordon French

[Winter 2016]

Report on The Friends of Holland Park Art Exhibition 2016

Art exhibition 2016The Friends of Holland Park held another successful art exhibition in the Orangery this April. The weather was good which meant visitor numbers were excellent, and the feedback on the quality of the work was extremely complimentary and wonderful to hear.

Firstly I would like to thank our sponsors, Romulo Café, the new Filipino restaurant on Kensington High Street. As Holland Park is on their doorstep I approached them about sponsoring the exhibition, which they did, and I encourage The Friends to support Romulo Café as they have supported us. You will not be disappointed, the food is exceptional.

I would like to thank Isabel Langtry, Principal of Hampstead School of Art, for judging the exhibition, and to the Hampstead School of Art for awarding a new prize: for Applied Art. Once again the Orangery was superbly hung by Alison Beckett who was assisted by Fen Murray and Graham Franklin.

The two private views were both well attended with everyone seeming to enjoy the art on display. The raffle was a great success: around 300 tickets were sold, and some very happy raffle-ticket holders won prizes donated by generous local businesses. The Friends did a mail-drop of 5,000 exhibition flyers to residences in the Borough to help publicize the event. As usual the credit-card facility made the sale of artworks easier for both buyers and stewards. This year our feature artist was Mao Wen Biao who was responsible for painting the 'mural' outside the Orangery, opposite the Iris Garden. The Friends were able to hang a selection of his work within eyesight of the original mural which was a 'conversation piece' in itself.

Lastly I would like to thank all the artists: you are each year's exhibition, thank you; also Joy Puritz for compiling the catalogue, and all the stewards and trustees. I look forward to doing it all again in 2017.

Gordon French

Photo by M. Kaleta

The Judging Experience 2016

Never mind where I travel in the world and the wondrous things there are to see, I long to return to Holland Park and revisit the collection of trees by the low wall, watch the squirrels' antics and walk through the rose garden towards the ice house. The combination of art and nature is a marriage made in heaven that fires the imagination. I love it when artists engage in observing and responding to nature: as I made this walk today I remembered how the magnificent trees here inspired my own sculpture Picassos Petals, a 2.5-metre bronze now installed in the Tramuntana Mountains of Majorca, part of the Hobbs Family collection: a little bit of the Holland Park spirit that works so well among the carob trees and olives of the area.

Arriving at the Orangery's 'The Friends of Holland Park Art Exhibition 2016' makes it a perfect evening: the diverse range of artworks with sculpture, applied art and paintings of all types, alongside photographs, prints and drawings beautifully displayed by the hard-working hanging team. It is also a pleasure to see a collection of work by the invited feature artist Mao Wen Biao who painted the beautiful Holland Park 'mural'. The hanging makes the viewing of the work a pleasure; many thanks to the hanging committee and co-ordinator Gordon French.

This year I was especially excited to present the new yearly 'Hampstead School of Art, Applied Art Award' – to Anne Musso for her porcelain lamp.  Each year the prize-winner will receive a term of an art course of their choice, at the art school. The new prize joins the Sir Hugh Casson Prize, Sir Hugh being the honoured historic President of The Friends of Holland Park, the prize posthumously and kindly awarded by his daughters.

I relish looking through the browsers which are always full of visual treats; many of the works are very reasonably priced, and if you bought a piece, well done, your contribution is extremely important in supporting Holland Park itself and in encouraging the artists.

Many artists received a special mention from me at the private view and I congratulate you all again for submitting work, contributing to an excellent exhibition and supporting an event that makes such a valuable contribution to the creative year.

The exhibition really is a wonderful way of encouraging artists and supporting our beautiful Holland Park, bringing us together through art and nature.

I look forward to seeing your new work, next year, alongside new contributors.

Well done to The Friends of Holland Park.

Isabel H. Langtry, Principal of Hampstead School of Art

Review of the 2016 Art Exhibition

Artist Friends of Holland Park were brimming with enthusiasm, versatility and talent in the annual exhibition in the Orangery this spring with work ranging from spectacular flower paintings to alluring landscapes, stunning wildlife pictures and humorous sculpture.

Iwona Behar 2016Annie Leach's painting of a lilac dahlia was bold and magnificent, while Elfin Ebury's flower still life was sweet and gentle, and Glenna Devlin showed an extraordinary delicacy in her fine drypoint  print of pansies. Iwona Behar, however, won the Prize for Artistic Excellence with her captivating Nature study in pastel, swirling with energy in many shades of green. Trees were a favourite subject, in all shapes and colours, Katrina Rose reproducing the stunning reds of Colorado, and Karen Humpage engagingly depicting impossible tangles of branches. Mysterious, half-visible trees merged enchantingly with the waters of a lake in a beautiful photograph by Nadhira Benaissa, and fallen leaves were captured in glorious hues with great dexterity by Hassiba Hafiz. Images inspired by a ruined church proved an intriguing work from Zoe Zenghelis, and Wendy Mackenzie's village street scene had an enticing warmth compared with the splendid but rainy London views of Olga Brown and Ihor Ropyanik. Joanna Irvin presented two delightful aquatint prints, Up the creek and Blue haven, that might attract anyone on a carefree boating trip, and Alessia had taken a great photograph of a mass of gondolas parked in Venice.

A highly accomplished and colourful mixed media study, Roche's Point Lighthouse in Cork, won Jeanette Carr the Hugh Casson prize for drawing. However, Elizabeta  Chojak-Mysko also demonstrated a great affinity with line in her painting of a marina with a confusing multitude of masts, as did Clare Weatherill with a glorious watercolour of leggy flamingos. Cows starred happily in a further work by Jeanette Carr as well as in a gloriously whimsical painting by Bob Barling of one jumping over the Moon. An etching of a black cat by Masako Jikihara made me smile with pleasure, and two photographs by Jennifer Bush cleverly portrayed carp luxuriating in the waters of the Kyoto Garden.

A sensuous use of green drew attention to Aude Grasset's fascinating composition of two figures awkwardly seated at a table, and Hazel Fennell employed the colour to superb effect in a pure abstract painting, Green guard, that you could enjoy looking at again and again. Hazel Leach's picture of two young sisters walking on a country road in summer was particularly charming, and there were several very well observed portraits including Patrick Killery's painting of a man leaning on a table, and Roger Harris's pastel of Astrid with a background of stripes.

Among the 3-D works were Barbara Foster's fantastically animated goat sculptures and Elzbieta Stanhope's lovely Greek-style vases decorated with trees. But the 3-D prize-winner was John Schetrumpf for his amazing aluminium and gum tree sculpture of an axe embedded in a tree trunk, beautifully judged and executed, entitled Erectus interuptus. A triumph. 

Alison Beckett

Photo shows Jennie Kettlewell presenting Iwona Behar with her prize.

[Summer 2016]

Art Exhibition Timetable 2017


Friday, 10 March    All exhibit details forms must be received by this date to allow listing in the catalogue

Friday, 31 March    Artists deliver artworks to the Orangery, Holland Park, 8.30-11am

All artists will be required to sign the catalogue to certify that the details shown are correct

Friday, 31 March    Hanging and judging, 11am-6pm

Friday, 31 March    Private View, 7.30-9.30pm, entry by ticket at £3

Saturday, 1 April    Private View, 10.30am-12.30pm, entry by ticket at £3

For the two Private Views, artists are entitled to 5 complimentary tickets in toto

Saturday, 1 April    Exhibition open to the public, 1-6pm. Entry free of charge

Sunday, 2 April – Sunday, 9 April   Exhibition open to the public, 10.30am-6pm. Entry free of charge


Sunday, 9 April    Artists and buyers collect works, 6-7pm

Monday, 10 April    Artists and buyers collect works, 9-11am

Artists are particularly asked NOT TO COLLECT THEIR WORKS BEFORE 6pm on SUNDAY 9 April, as this would spoil the exhibition for others.

[Winter 2016]

Art Exhibition


Spring is around the corner and preparations for The Friends of Holland Park Art Exhibition are well underway.

At this early stage we have already had a strong response from artists, including some new ones. Artists, please remember to send your completed exhibit details forms by Friday, 11 March, and to specify whether you would like tickets for the Friday evening or Saturday morning Private View. If you do not choose you will not be sent tickets for either. Also, please state clearly if you wish to steward, and when you would be available.

I am very excited about this year's feature artist, Mao Wen Biao, who was responsible for the spectacular mural in the arcade leading to the Orangery.

For the duration of the exhibition a credit card facility will be available to assist with sales, and raffle tickets will be sold, with wonderful prizes donated by generous local businesses.

We hope you will support The Friends of Holland Park by visiting our exhibition. We look forward to seeing you there.

Gordon French

Art Exhibition Timetable

Friday 11 March    Last date for receipt of exhibit details forms to allow listing in catalogue

For the two Private Views, artists are entitled to 5 complimentary tickets in toto

Friday 15 April 8.30-11am        Artists deliver artwork to the Orangery, Holland Park

All artists will be required to sign the catalogue to certify that the details shown are correct

Friday 15 April 11am-6pm        Works will be hung/displayed and judged

Friday 15 April 7.30-9.30pm        Private View, entry by ticket at £3

Saturday 16 April 10.30am-12.30pm    Private View, entry by ticket at £3

Saturday 16 April        Exhibition open to the public 1-6pm. Free of charge

Sunday 17 – Sunday 24 April    Exhibition open to the public 10.30am-6pm. Free of charge

Sunday 24 April 6-7pm    Buyers collect sold works, artists collect unsold works

Monday 25 April 9-11am    Buyers collect sold works, artists collect unsold works

Artists are particularly asked NOT TO COLLECT THEIR WORKS BEFORE 6pm on SUNDAY 24 April

as this would spoil the exhibition for others

Enquiries to Gordon French, 19 Kensington Court Place, London, W8 5BJ, Tel: 020 7937 7222,


[Spring 2016]