My first ever solo show was in Penarth Pier Pavilion from April to May 2014.
It was a great experience to see over 50 of my paintings filling the space. Even better with the eerie and creepy soundscape made by Tom Ware permeating the gallery (for more info on Tom's music see https://soundcloud.com/tomware). Now and then a piercing scream or howling would echo around the gallery and it really added to the desolation and emotion of the exhibit.
It was also an odd feeling- a sort of letting go of the paintings I'd spent so much time and emotion on- letting them go out into the real world to face the public.
I felt uneasy watching people looking at them in a way- they'd all spent two years only seen by me and close family and friends and now they were out. I wasn't worried about people liking them- they weren't there to be liked after all, just uneasy in a way that they might be misunderstood.
From looking at the guestbook the show was well received in the main, a few thought it creepy and unsettling (which was partly the intention) a few loved it and appreciated the hard lives that these people lived. There was only one negative comment from what must have been a religious person (as they also quoted the scriptures) and said I must be mentally unbalanced, and that it wasn't a good thing to show the negative aspects of life- you should always show the good. Well stuff that attitude.
Born of Pain and Iron. Solo Show by Anthony Rhys. Penarth Pavilion April 13th - 8th May 2014 from Anthony Rhys on Vimeo.