Artist and printmaker Linda Nevill talks to Moya Marshall about etchings inspired by poetry, social themes and the natural world. You can see Linda’s solo show at the RBSA Gallery until 30 March…
When did you first discover your love of printing?
I initially studied History of Art at the University of Edinburgh where I got my MA then years later my friend Jean persuaded me to come along to an etching night class in Wolverhampton. One thing led to another and I found myself at the University of Wolverhampton pursuing a BA in Fine Art Printmaking. From 2004 I started exhibiting!
Tell us more about your solo show…
I’ve explored a wide range of ideas linking to poetry, including different aspects of landscape, still life, flamingos in captivity and football as a man’s game.
I also work with contrasts to create social comment; for example, the brightly lit clothes shop windows with their haughty, disdainful models and the homeless woman seated outside. Or the blue, temporary tented homes set up in front of a block of flats where people live in heated accommodation with televisions, fridges and other appliances.
Your Meet the Artist event will involve live poetry readings from Emma Purshouse and Jane Seabourne. Can you tell me how you met them?
The same friend who persuaded me to go to that etching class insisted I meet Emma on the basis that she was ‘the most creative person you will ever meet’. We started collaborating very quickly which expanded into a team of both poets and artists coming together to produce creative projects.
The group disbanded in 2013, but the Meet the Artist event is similar to the work we used to do on a smaller scale. They are both incredibly different and incredibly talented writers.
One piece in particular is inspired by a very personal story and poem by Emma Purshouse.
When she was at primary school, Emma entered a competition where you completed a football quiz and the winner received a prize.
Emma was football-mad and answered every question correctly. However, as she was a girl, the teacher did not believe she answered the questions unaided and the prize went to a boy. Here is an excerpt from Emma’s poem, ‘It’s a man’s game’:
It’s a man’s game
…’Rothmans is my bible.
“Test Me Dad!” I say.
“The Red Devils!” I shoot back.
“Shrewsbury Town –
“Gay Meadow!” I chip in.
I am an expert in my field.’…
Linda’s artwork, depicting the ghostly figure of a little girl standing in a football stadium is entitled ‘Her game too’.
You can catch Linda’s Meet the Artist event on 16 March, where Emma will be performing. Here is a link to a performance of ‘It’s a man’s game’ if you can’t make it on the day:
By Moya Marshall, RBSA intern
Linda Nevill studied for an MA Hons in the History of Art at Edinburgh University and a BA Hons in Fine Art Printmaking at the University of Wolverhampton. In her pursuit of a non-toxic approach to printmaking she has taken courses in New Mexico, New York and Dumfries. She has lived and taught in Belgium, Sweden and the UK, and has been creating happily in her studio in the West Midlands for many years. Working in a range of mainly printmaking media Linda responds to subjects that she has a strong interest in. She generally sketches outdoors, then works with drawings and her memories and sensations to create finished works. Linda exhibits widely and in 2017 she had an etching accepted into the Victoria and Albert Museum’s permanent collection.
Banner image: etching inspired by Emma Purshouse’s ‘Flamingos’