Art of the Everyday

We began planning this exhibition with MAFA in 2019, including agreeing the title. At this stage we could not have begun to imagine how our “everyday” would change in the course of a few months.

In some ways this exhibition is about noticing the details which we may have taken for granted before. It also documents a new way of living, for example the ideas of home schooling or keeping in touch with family via video calling instead of being in the same space to share laughter and hugs. Some artists have use daily walks as an opportunity to develop their drawing skills and capture the landscape around them, others captured activities that have helped their mental wellbeing, cooking, sitting in the garden or escaping to a bath.

All works in this exhibition are for sale. Take a look at our digital catalogue for more about the artworks in this exhibition, details about what inspired MAFA’s sculptors, painters and printmakers as well as the prices.

Download Art Of The Everyday Catalogue (Accessible PDF)

To accompany the Art of the Everyday exhibition we’ll be running a programme of digital activities. These include video tutorials on creating woodcut prints and a guide of how to use pastels. Peter Davis and Anna Thomas have also allowed us in their studios to create films about what the everyday of a professional artist looks like. We will also be interviewing Malcolm Taylor and Kath Lowe about MAFA which is one of the oldest art societies in the UK; past members include LS Lowry and Charles Oppenheimer. We’ll be talking to them about their favourite work in the exhibition and the challenges that the pandemic has presented for artists.

To find out more about MAFA and the 110 diverse painters, sculptors and printmakers who make up this art society go to the MAFA website, you can also follow the group on Instagram @mafaartists, Facebook and Twitter @MAFAartists.

For the latest Gallery Oldham opening times and to plan your visit, go to our Visitor Information webpage.


Tuesday 4 May | A Day in the Life of Anna Thomas

Ever wondered what a day in the life of an artist would be like?

Painter and MAFA artist Anna Thomas gives an insight into her everyday, including the sources of her inspiration and a behind-the-scenes glimpse of her studio. You can find out more about Anna Thomas on her website.

Saturday 8 May | Woodcut Printing with Anthony Ratcliffe

Always wanted to learn how to print? Take a look at the short film below.

Printmaker Anthony Ratcliffe predominantly works with landscape themes based on drawings made on site. In this short film he demonstrates the process of making a simple woodcut print starting with a sketchbook drawing made on local Pennine moorland. The drawing is recomposed, inverted and painted onto a woodblock in its reversed state. The block is then cut and printed by hand using readily accessible tools and materials.

Anthony uses this basic woodcut procedure in his own practice but also uses multiple blocks and reduction printing to make larger complex prints involving many colours. Have a look at Anthony Ratcliffe’s website for more details about his work.

Tuesday 11 May | A Day in the Life of social realist painter Peter Davis

Artist and MAFA member Peter Davis opens his studio to viewers and shares his ‘everyday’. He takes a sketching trip to Manchester and gets his latest series of paintings framed. He also shares his inspiration for his painting in the Art of the Everyday exhibition ‘Stay Safe’ and his interest in capturing our relationship with digital technology. To find out more about Peter’s paintings, go to his website.

Saturday 15 May | Pastel tutorial with Janina Cebertowicz

Join MAFA artist Janina Cebertowicz as she shares her top tips on using pastels to build up colour and depth in your work. A great film to watch for beginners and those who want to improve their technique with this medium. Take a look at more of Janina’s artwork via her website.