Huyton Gallery, Huyton Library, L36 9GD
Till 14th May 2016
Reviewed by JJ Schaer
‘Faces and Places’ is a new exhibition at Huyton Gallery by local artist Leslie Briggs. Briggs’ work has already been selected for exhibitions around the North West and has led to him winning a number of awards, most recently ‘Adult Visual Artist of the Year’. This is his first solo exhibition.
On show are a selection of works capturing special places and people in Briggs’ life. The back wall was adorned with acrylics of sights around Liverpool. There is the obligatory waterfront scene and an eerie night time landscape of Halton Castle.
But it is in the portraits that Briggs’ true talent lies.
The pieces are largely in oil and of impressive detail. There are a few celebrity works mixed in throughout the gallery. There is, unfortunately, a huge familiar portrait of the Queen greeting you as you enter. A few Hollywood starlets are smattered around the gallery – a demure looking Audrey Hepburn sits close to Marilyn Monroe and shaven headed Scarlett Johanssen in their usual voluptuous glory.
As well as two Freudian Mark Knopfler paintings – one showing him playing his guitar like it was an extension of his body, and the next showing him sitting proudly by said guitar.
But the pictures that really took me where the ones of his family and friends – all candid works capturing simple moments in life. Some are in the form of classic portraits you might see coming out of a photographers studio – head and shoulder pieces in both colour and black and white.
Like ‘Taylor” showing a beautiful girl staring out from the canvas at you. Or ‘Sarah’ and ‘Lily’, both showing women caught in though, both encapsulating a mundane moment in time perfectly.
My favourite had to be ‘Sharon’. It shows a woman lying on the couch staring out of the fourth wall. There is something about it that attracted me with its simplicity.
I truly enjoyed the exhibition. Briggs is a talented artist and his works are stunning.
Admission is free and continues until the 14th of May.