Streets in the Sky
Original media: Painted in inks, gouache, acrylic, watercolour, gold leaf and gold thread.
Measures 59cm x 75cm (mounted)
Painted in 2020 for the ‘Toffee Town’ exhibition at The Yorkshire Gallery in Halifax’s Piece Hall. I painted this in Lockdown, when the idea of travelling as far as Halifax from Hebden Bridge seemed somewhat exotic! I think that’s why it’s taken on an Italian look – like a sun drenched Venetian Piazza. I have always loved the idea of hidden spaces. As a student I worked in a restaurant and behind the kitchens was an abandoned ballroom, complete with a piano that couldn’t be reached because of the rotten floor. I was told about the Streets in the Sky years ago, and finally managed to visit them in Autumn of 2019. Beside one of the grand wrought iron gateways into Halifax’s beautiful Borough Market, there is an unremarkable door leading to one of two secret streets of houses located above the market building. Built originally for the owners of the market stalls beneath, they are now almost all uninhabited, but there are plans to renovate them and use them again. The view here is largely imagined; higher than the hidden streets, looking down on The Piece Hall, Halifax Minster, the chocolate factory (now Nestle, but before that Rowntree Mackintosh), and arches of the railway, then beyond up to Beacon Hill. This piece is on display at The Yorkshire Gallery from September 26th 2020. Prints are available from The Yorkshire Gallery and Heart Gallery from that date. They will be available online from October 27th.