Salt-inspired exhibition by adult art students opens at Northwich's Lion Salt Works Museum

Fri 7th June 2019 11.31AM

Salt-inspired exhibition by adult art students opens at Northwich's Lion Salt Works Museum
New ‘Salts of the Earth’ fine and applied arts exhibition at the Lion Salt Works Museum is inspired by the region’s salt history A new fine and applied arts exhibition by adult students from Warrington and Vale Royal College has opened at the multi award-winning Lion Salt Works Museum in Northwich and will run until Sunday 14 July. The work of seven local students, the exhibition is inspired by the region’s salt and its impact on people, industry and landscape. The exhibition is the culmination of extensive research at the Lion Salt Works Museum and Weaver Hall Museum as well as local fieldwork. Normal museum admission charges apply. For more information, visit www.westcheshiremuseums.co.uk or call the Museum on 01606 275066.

Ben Brady, Curriculum Manager for the Art and Design Courses at Warrington and Vale Royal College based in Weaver Street, Winsford, said: “Each student has really embraced the brief about the legacy of salt. They have researched widely and taken inspiration from a variety of sources, including landscape, history, geology and industrial buildings. As the college teaches a wide variety of different fine and applied art techniques, the display includes works in ceramics (including raku-firing), glass, mixed media and oil painting. It is an imaginative and professional interpretation and I am sure that people will gain new insights about salt from visiting the exhibition.”

Nicola O’Brien from Northwich, who has produced three striking monochrome pieces in paper clay, coloured slip and stoneware glazes, said: “My inspiration has been the unique black and white architecture of Northwich, designed on wooden frames so they could be jacked up following subsidence.
Other inspirations include the chimney at the Loin Salt Works and the salt blocks produced at the works. I have really enjoyed researching the history of the salt and taking photos around the area.”

Joan Walton from Manley near Frodsham, said: ‘My work is mixed media and I have taken inspiration from diverse elements from industrial wastelands to wildlife haven. My piece connects the hard work of the salt workers to the local salt landscape of the Neumann’s Flash. Viewed through a bird hide, it imagines the salt workers as ethereal beings watching over us from the now beautiful lake. It challenges us to consider how their past endeavours allow us to enjoy the landscape we see today. The historic setting of the exhibition really makes a special and fitting setting for the exhibition.”

Councillor Louise Gittins, Leader of the Council and Cabinet Member for Wellbeing, said: “I am delighted that both Northwich museums have been an important point of inspiration and research for this imaginative ‘Salts of the Earth’ exhibition. Cheshire’s past and future is inextricably linked to salt and it is refreshing to see its impact ‘rediscovered’ through pieces created by local artists. I hope as many people as possible come and enjoy this exhibition at the Lion Salt Works Museum.”

The seven local artists exhibiting at the Lion Salt Works Museum are at the end of their first year on a HNC Fine and Applied Arts course at Warrington and Vale Royal College in Winsford.

The Lion Salt Works Museum tells the story of salt through interactive displays, including a sound and light show, automaton and ‘subsiding house’.
It has won nine prestigious awards since re-opening after a four-year £10m restoration in June 2015.

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