Current Exhibition

4th April - 12th May 2019

An exhibition to be enjoyed by the visually disadvantaged and others, including children, who like to explore the texture of artworks by touch, smell and sound.

Please click any image to view the exhibition slideshow.

Following a hint from a partially sighted member of the U3A at a meeting in Harlow last year, The Gallery at Parndon Mill has planned an exhibition we hope will be enjoyed by people with visual impairments. The Sense of Touch is for everyone who likes to touch, including children and those who just like to feel works of art as well as look at them.

Often in galleries the sign “Please do not touch” is to be seen. Artworks can be fragile and fingerprints hard to polish off. Not in this exhibition. All the exhibits are “touchy feely”. More than 25 exhibitors contribute works in wool, glass, marble, paper, card, embroidery, wood and metal. As well as being aesthetically pleasing, all the work is enjoyably tactile.

Sculpture includes an edition of Gerda Rubenstein's Julia, which features in the Harlow Sculpture Collection. Other sculptural works feature a bird, a frog, hands and faces which have some areas smoothly polished, others incised with drawing.

There are a few large pieces as well as some which can be picked up and handled. One of the bigger ones is a textile mural the size of a sheet embellished with a tree with roots stretching out on the floor. A larger than life size puppet has stuffing made of various materials such as straw, sawdust and pebbles which have a different feel and make different noises when touched. Smaller pieces which can be picked up are felt vessels, rather like birds’ nests, lined with fibres and feathers, embroidered shells edged with lace, and solid glass oversize potatoes! Wall pieces include cut out lettering, the positive and negative, a hanging made of raw sheep’s wool, fir cones and feathers, a felt piece worked until hard in places then embroidered, the lino matrix for a print and paintings which are three dimensional or light up. Altogether there is a great variety of shapes and textures to explore and enjoy.

Music features too on Sunday 7 April at 4pm, when there will be a performance in the Project Space where visitors are invited on a journey through sound which provokes an emotional response. This will be an intriguing experience.