In 2015, Kirkby Gallery held an exhibition celebrating the life and work of Knowsley playwright, Willy Russell. It was a combination of items on loan from Liverpool John Moores Archives, The Liverpool Playhouse, and Willy himself; displays included original scripts, posters, props, costumes, ephemera, photographs, awards, and two paintings by Willy which revealed another of his creative talents.
The critical success and popularity of Willy Russell: Behind the Scenes was such that Willy suggested that Kirkby Gallery could be the venue for him to exhibit his ever-growing body of artwork; Knowsley Culture Development and Events Service were happy to oblige and are proud to announce that Willy Russell: Another Aspect will open at Kirkby Gallery on Tuesday 9 May and run until Saturday 2 September.
Ranging from energetic sketches to tranquil landscapes, portraits to abstract mixed media pieces, Willy’s work demonstrates the breadth of his talent. For this, his first solo exhibition as a visual artist, we present a gallery packed with a stunning range of paintings and works on paper inspired by the places and people in his life; whilst the exhibition doesn’t seek to tell a story, it does go some way to tell the artistic journey that Willy is on with his painting.
“I think for a large part of my life I used my ears first and eyes second. I’d look but I don’t think I was really seeing – not in the way that you have to if you’re going to try to draw and paint… so when, rather late in life I began to try and paint and draw I had to start using my eyes much more, to try and learn to see as well as look.”
Kirkby Gallery, The Kirkby Centre, Norwich Way L32 8XY
Open Monday – Friday, 9am – 5pm, Saturday 10am – 1pm
Admission is free