Once upon a time Portsmouth City Council had the very bright idea of organising an open art exhibition at the city museum. Sadly, it turned out to be a one-off rather than, as hoped, a regular event but it promised to be "A Big Thing". I had just started being serious about my art and decided to enter a couple of pieces. A day or two before the entry deadline I finished a largish new work that I was quite pleased with and it was just dry when I took it along to the museum where it was accepted and entered into the 2008 Portsmouth Open exhibition due to run until the end of December.
The days passed and I visited the exhibition a couple of times, showing friends and family my work, and watching other works get their red dots. On the final day I got an email to say it had sold but when I went to collect the other, unsold, piece I noticed that the sold one had not been granted a red dot, so I checked at the desk and was informed that actually the museum itself had bought it. And that was the last I saw of it, until this week.
Harry, our liaison at Hotwalls, organised a trip for artists to the museum stores in Hilsea (Hotwalls studios have been given to the museum service to administer) and there it was...
I was both chuffed and relieved that it still existed, was being looked after, and was as good as I remember (relatively!). It's called "Nothing Else Matters" and depicts the view from my seat at Fratton Park moments before kick-off on a late summer evening, when the outside world glimpsed through the gap between stands, no longer matters to those within. It was painted a few years before the new Tesco store blocked the view of the Spinnaker Tower just visible in the background.
Now I know where it is, I can visit from time to time and maybe even borrow it back for a while, who knows?