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Monday, October 7, 2013

MOVERS and SHAKERS: World-Renowned English Sculptor Rosamond Lloyd Our Coverage Sponsored by Go Fish! and Go Brit! British fish + chips shops in Rehoboth Beach and Lewes, Delaware

Rosamond Lloyd

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Whom You Know has highly recommended Go Fish: 
Go Fish! and Go Brit! are often on The Today Show, The Washington Post and Delaware Today. 

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Born in 1973, Rosamond Lloyd has been a gifted artist from childhood, inspired by her surroundings (the New Forest and rolling countryside of Dorset, which also served to inspire the likes of English novelist and poet, Thomas Hardy) and by the example of her talented artist grandmother. Rosamond graduated with a London University degree in English and Drama before pursuing a career in radio. She later returned to her first love of art, combining the study of illustration at art school with motherhood. It was during this period that she began sculpting, initially as a hobby and then, further to an apprenticeship with a local sculptor, as a profession. Her work rapidly attracted interest from both private collectors and galleries and she now works exclusively as a sculptor from her countryside studio in Oxfordshire, England.

Sculpting in clay or wax and casting predominantly in bronze and bronze resin, Rosamond draws her inspiration from the natural world and particularly the relationship between parent and offspring. A vivid sense of attention to detail defines her sculptures, helping to capture the spirit and sense of her subject matter with both accuracy and empathy. 

In 2011, Rosamond was shortlisted for the prestigious David Shepherd Wildlife Artist of the Year Award. Her piece – The Art of Nurture, a bronze sculpture depicting a female baboon carrying her baby, was selected out of a total of around 800 entries submitted from artists worldwide and displayed in the Mall Galleries, London. It was a great favourite with the judges; “Rosamond’s work was a strong contender in what was the most creative and exciting shortlist to date” said judge and founder of the David Shepherd Wildlife Foundation, David Shepherd CBE.

Described as ‘a natural born artist’ (Oxfordshire and Cotswold Life Magazine), Rosamond exhibits in galleries, participates in local, national and international exhibitions and is regularly invited to demonstrate and show her work at the prestigious Art in Action, the UK’s largest annual festival of master craftsmanship. In 2013 she visited Zambia on a research trip to collect material for a new body of sculpture and is currently preparing to collaborate with award winning wildlife photographer, David Lloyd (no relation) in BRONZE, BLACK & WHITE – Two Wildlife Artists – One Unique Show, a very special exhibition at the Royal Opera Arcade Gallery, Pall Mall, London, 18-30th November 2013 (www.bronzeblackandwhite.com). 

Rosamond accepts private commissions, will consider all subject matter and is able to produce sculptures to any scale. Her sculptures are cast using the lost wax process at prestigious UK foundry, Castle Fine Arts, whose clients include Antony Gormley, Nic Fiddian-Green and Geoffrey Dashwood. Rosamond likes to involve her clients as much as possible in the creative process and they value her personal approach to their special commission. Rosamond is a member of the Marwell International Wildlife Art Society, the Surrey Sculpture Society, the Oxfordshire Sculptors Group and Artparks International. We are thrilled to present Rosamond Lloyd as our latest Mover and Shaker!  Peachy Deegan interviewed Rosamond Lloyd for Whom You Know.

Peachy Deegan: 
What is your first sculpting memory?
Rosamond Lloyd: My first sculpting memory is probably around 5 or 6 years old, when I constructed an underwater world in three dimensions, complete with fish, rocks and seaweed, with the help of an inspired mother, out of things found around the house and a couple of old clothes horses. Playing inside my construction provided days of endless amusement. In terms of clay work, I made and fired my first clay portrait head at about 14 years of age, in a school art class. 

What made you choose this medium to work with?
Since my early childhood years I have always enjoyed making three dimensional forms, which graduated from recycled rubbish sculptures to school set and costume designs, mask work, a specialism in set design at London University and ultimately, an apprenticeship with a local bronze sculptor. I have continually honed my drawing, sketching and photographic skills to inform the three dimensional work I now create.

When Peachy lived in London she went to see Rodin at The Royal Academy and loved it http://www.royalacademy.org.uk/exhibitions/rodin/ did you see this and if so what did you think?Sadly I was unable to see this exhibition, but have always admired Rodin's spectacular 'Gates of Hell', an astonishing sculptural work, which was the first exhibit at the Royal Academy Exhibition that you visited (and the first time this piece had ever been exhibited in Britain).

What other artists and sculptors in particular inspire you?
I am always very cautious not to over examine the work of other sculptors for fear that my own work may become too heavily influenced and lose what I hope is its unique quality, but I do admire the work of Antoine-Louis Barye, Auguste Rodin, Michelangelo, Rembrandt Bugatti, Edgar Degas and the more contemporary late painter, Robert Heindel, for his ability to capture the true spirit of a performer and a moment in time.

What should everyone know about growing up in the English countryside? 
 Is it as beautiful as the BBC has shown us?
Growing up in the English countryside is an experience that heightens all the senses; observing the landscape through the changing of the seasons, informs a deep perception, from an early age, of ones surroundings, in terms of sights, sounds and smells. The greater sense of observation that I have developed through my experiences of time spent in the countryside has definitely informed the work that I do. I am biased, but the English countryside is certainly as beautiful as the BBC has shown you, if not more so. 

Who was your artist grandmother and what should we know about her?
My artist grandmother was Elsie Lloyd, a wonderful lady who always underestimated the quality of her artwork and was content to teach art rather than to show it publicly. After losing her husband, my grandfather, to cancer, at far too early an age, she devoted the latter years of her life to teaching art (painting and pottery) to terminally ill cancer patients. Her legacy, in terms of her own paintings and sketches, remains on our family walls today. Although she never got the chance to see my career as a sculptor develop, she did witness my early efforts as a child and I feel sure of her presence within what I do now.

Please tell us about your radio career.
My first job after graduation was as a press officer at Capital Radio, one of the largest commercial radio stations in London at the time. I found myself using my writing skills in the form of drafting press releases and liaising with DJ's and music artists and before I knew it, I was offered a job at Virgin Radio during the height of its popularity. I was delighted, in my early 20s, to find myself working in the centre of London, meeting the inspiring Richard Branson on several occasions and, as a music lover and player myself, getting the chance to meet some incredible artists and observe live recording sessions at the station. I felt very privileged.

What or who has had the most influence on your pursuit of excellence?
My family and in particular my grandmother, have had the most influence on my artistic career.

What are you proudest of and why?
In terms of my artistic career, my first sculpture sale was obviously a proud moment and also one of huge reassurance that I could make it as an artist and sculptor. On a personal level, my son remains my proudest achievement.

What would you like to do professionally that you have not yet had the opportunity to do?
I aspire to work to a large scale on a piece of sculpture for public display, meeting the challenge of incorporating the level of detail which has become my trademark, within a structure of great dimensions. 

What honors and awards have you received in your profession?
I was shortlisted for the David Shepherd Wildlife Artist of the Year in 2011 out of 800 entries worldwide and am one of just a handful of sculptors invited to demonstrate, teach and display at the UK's largest festival of master craftsmanship in the UK, Art in Action. 

What one word best describes you and why?
Passionate. My sculpture is a true passion, a driving force within me, without which I would not be the person I am. I also try to take on everything in life with a sense of passion and commitment. Others might describe me as a perfectionist.

What is your favorite place to be in Manhattan and London?
One of my favourite places in London has to be Covent Garden for its mix of theatres, Royal Opera House, performing street artistes and fabulous people-watching opportunities. In Manhattan, it would have to be the top of the Empire State Building, for the spectacular view and iconic status, and Central Park, in the snow.

What is your favorite shop in Manhattan and London?
I am afraid I am a hopeless shopper!

If you could hire anybody who would it be and why?
Richard Branson, as business adviser. Hopefully it is obvious why!

What is your favorite drink?
Vodka Tonic, ice and lemon.

What is the funniest thing that has ever happened to you at a cocktail party?
Although cocktail parties are not commonplace in rural Oxfordshire, I do recall one London party I attended, watching a young lady delicately drop the cherry from her cocktail down her cleavage and continue her conversation with the gentleman opposite, as if nothing had happened. Amusing at the time.

What is your favorite restaurant in Manhattan and London?
The Ivy Restaurant is still an old favourite in London. I do recall having a superb meal at The Four Seasons, NYC

What is your favorite Manhattan book or favorite character in Manhattan literature and London literature?
I do not have a favourite Manhattan book/character, but my favourite character in English literature is Miss Havisham in Dickens' Great Expectations, with a particular warmth for Mole in Kenneth Grahame's Wind in the Willows!

Who would you like to be for a day and why?
I am completely content being myself!

If you could have anything in Manhattan named after you what would it be and why? London?
It would be rather wonderful to have a sculpture park named after me in either location.

What has been your best Manhattan athletic experience? London?
I have not had an athletic experience in Manhattan but in London it undoubtably has to be the 2012 Olympics.

What is your favorite thing to do in Manhattan that you can do nowhere else? London?
I think in terms of both locations, it involves a view - from the Empire State Building in Manhattan and from the London Eye across the River Thames and London skyline. It is always grounding to be reminded of our frailty within a much larger setting.

If you could have dinner with any person living or passed, who would it be and why?
I could happily spend an evening in the company of the very much living Sir David Attenborough, sharing wildlife stories.

What has been your best Manhattan art or music experience? London?
My best music experience in London is undoubtedly being part of a privileged few, watching a live session, in a fairly small studio, by Annie Lennox at Virgin Radio whilst I was employed there. Seeing Caberet on Broadway was probably a favourite Manhattan musical experience.

What do you personally do or what have you done to give back to the world?
I support wildlife conservation efforts, through various charities and the sale of my sculpture and, on a personal level, have been involved in a British Charity, The Caring Cancer Trust, who arrange Alpine Healing Holidays for children recovering from cancer..

What do you think is most underrated and overrated in Manhattan? London?
I am not a city dweller and naturally gravitate towards the countryside, so I am afraid I would have to say city dwelling, for me personally, is overrated!

Other than Movers and Shakers of course, what is your favorite Whom You Know column and what do you like about it?
I would have to say Gracious Galleries and Admirable Artists because it hopefully serves to inspire others to explore their own creativity as well as introducing readers to new concepts and ideas in art. I am a great believer in the fact that elements of creativity are in every one of us and that it is just a matter of whether we choose, or are inspired, to explore these or not.

Have you tried The Peachy Deegan yet and if not, why not?
I haven't had the privilege but would welcome the opportunity when next in town...

What else should Whom You Know readers know about you?
I would be delighted to welcome any readers travelling to the UK in November to my next show, Bronze Black & White, at the Royal Opera Arcade Gallery, Pall Mall, London. (www.bronzeblackandwhite.com)

How would you like to be contacted by Whom You Know readers?
I can be contacted through my website and email, info@rosamondlloyd.com, which receives my personal attention at all times.

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