The I HEART ART collective have been exhibiting as a group since since 1999 and 22 members of this diverse collective are reuniting at Jack House Gallery in Old Portsmouth for a show of work that embraces many disciplines, including painting, drawing, installation, photography and sculpture. Living and working in various corners of the UK and Europe they are nevertheless committed to the larger group and regard their coming together as an important part of their individual creative practices. The ethos of I Heart Art is ‘we don’t come together to make art, we make art to come together.’ Happily many of the group share in common a period of time spent as part of the Masters Fine Art Faculty of Portsmouth University in the 1990’s. The Fine Art Department may have gone but the art lives on. Meet the artists HERE.
The I Heart Art website describes eloquently a fertile period of artistic activity emanating from the heart of Portsea’s traditional docklands. “The John Pounds Building was then a place of warren-like studio spaces whose very atmosphere seemed to invite free thinking and artistic risk-taking despite its rather austere façade. The ethos of the Fine Art department at that time encouraged independent experimentation to produce art that challenged orthodoxies whilst retaining a sense of humour and humanity. In reuniting for group shows, the artists and makers of the I HEART ART collective actively reinforce those values while aiming to present a coherent community from their creative diversity.” It feels particularly appropriate that this latest ‘coming together’ should take place at Jack House Gallery, not far from where it all started.
The exhibition runs until the 19th of August and is free to view.