Taking the Moss to the people

Flanders Moss NNR

This coming weekend we will turn the boardwalk of Flanders in to an art gallery again. It is the forth Valley Artbeat – Central Scotland’s open studios and art event (see here).

Flanders Moss is a unique and very special place managed as a National Nature Reserve by NatureScot. The peace, quiet, wild landscape, colours and rare wildlife have inspired artists for many years. Most of the nature reserve is very hard to reach because it is so wet, boggy and crossed with ditches. So twice over the last year, when lockdown restrictions permitted, we walked some intrepid artists far out into the middle of Flanders to get a feel for landscape. And this weekend the boardwalk becomes the exhibition space to show the work that the artists have created. and in doing so they have brought the middle of the moss to the people.

To give you a taster here are a couple of pictures and introductions to the artists.

Darren Rees (more info here).

We are lucky to have Darren living close to Flanders Moss so it is fantastic to see if and its wildlife represented so brilliantly in his artwork.

Darren was born in Hampshire in 1961, and he studied Mathematics at Southampton University teaching the subject for a short time before pursuing painting full time. As an artist he is self-taught. His work has attracted many awards including the Natural World and RSPB Fine Art Awards. He has also been a winner in the Swarovski/Birdwatch and BBC Wildlife Artist of the Year competitions including this year overall winner of the DSWF Wildlife Artist of the Year 2021.

His first solo book Bird Impressions was greeted by much critical acclaim and was a runner up in the Natural History Book of the Year. Darren serves on the council of the Society of Wildlife Artists and has been a contributing artist to The Artists for Nature Foundation/WWF projects in England, Holland, Poland, Peru and Ecuador. He has held painting workshops for a diverse number of groups, including Stirling University, Boston Museum of Fine Arts and BBC Wildlife Magazine. He is a knowledgeable naturalist and travels extensively leading tours to Europe, the Americas and the Arctic. Darren Rees’s work can be seen at West Moss-side (venue 10), during Forth Valley Art Beat, open daily July 10 – 11.

Graham Tristram

Graham Tristram is an architect and artist.

His paintings are about landscape, nearby and elsewhere; the atmosphere, the fall of light and the colour of distance. Subjects are found on coastal edges or marginal lands where earth and sky meet.  Flanders Moss is such a place, an enduring but fragile wilderness encircled by farmland and hills; unbounded space, sunlit, shaded or obscured by clouds. Distance blurs the outline of the world, holds every outcome suspended, possible.

Paintings in oil pastel or acrylic are made in the studio using sketches from outdoors, notes and memories.

Graham Tristram’s work can be seen at West Moss-side studio (venue 11), open for Forth Valley Art Beat weekends July 10-11 and by appointment, please text or call: 07743 912363.

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2 Responses to Taking the Moss to the people

  1. Anne says:

    This sound like an exciting event. I hope a lot of people come to see the art and then realise that the reserve will be worthwhile making another trip.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Pingback: Flanders Moss on the radio | 2 bogs, a swamp and some islands

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