Exhibition Opening - 'Guts' - Holz / Wheater
Join us on Wednesday 29th July between 6pm and 9pm for the opening of our exhibition 'Guts' here at our gallery space in Neon Workshops. Promises to be a fun evening with real ale and craft beer aplenty alongside a barbeque on the street!
Coincides with the Artwalk Wakefield.
Wings of Desire; the most beautiful film ever made?
Set in 1980's Berlin, we really can't wait to arrive in June 2015's Berlin. What are you waiting for? Join us at Berlin Glas eV, for a truly unique opportunity to celebrate 2015 as the UNESCO designated International year of Light - by working with furnace glass and neon together! More info
There's only a few days to go – but still time to sign up for this adventure in the movable feast that is Berlin. The French Former culture minister Jack Lang made this observation in a 2001 speech that sums up well - our own experience over the years visiting Germany's capital: "Paris is always Paris and Berlin is never Berlin!"
Hot dogs, yellow cabs and Lite Brite Neon!
Not long left before we head across the pond to New York City for the much anticipated New York Neon Workshop & evening events. Now is the time to sign up and be part of our coolest mobile neon venture yet!
Over three days and evenings, eight lucky participants will learn from the most influential players in New York City's neon scene. We'll be based in the uber-hip area of Brooklyn, at the renowned neon shop: Lite Brite Neon.
More info on our WORKSHOPS page…
Get in touch now!
Guardian feature: Electric Dreams
This months Guardian Do Something supplement includes a great feature on Neon Workshops.
Journalist Etan Smallman took part in our London Mobile Neon Workshop "My neon cloud bursts into electric life – and I know it will be a long one."
Read his piece online at the Guardian website
Public workshops for 2015 have been announced! Book your place online.
Berlin Festival of Lights Print
In order to commemorate our upcoming international workshop taking place in Berlin this October, we have commissioned Graphic Designer Si Billam to produce this stunning limited edition print. We have 40 A1-size silkscreen prints now available for sale. Celebrate the Festival of Lights with us!
Are You Experienced?
Northern Lights; there and back again.
Our Reykjavik based landmark Mobile Neon Workshop lived up to it's name, knocking the socks off anything else we have achieved so far ...plus we did actually get to see the northern lights!
A huge thank you to tutors Richard William Wheater, Julia Bickerstaff and Matt Dilling, and of course the globe-trotting workshop participants - our new found friends, who helped make this experience so incredible. A thank you also to our Iceland partners: Reykjavik Association of Sculptors, SIM and Visit Reykjavik.
We are already formulating a plan on how to build on Northern Lights, more on that later in an upcoming newsletter. For now we're just going to enjoy soaking up what was an epic adventure in the magical land of ice. Please check out our Facebook uploaded photo album.
Moving Neon Public Evening Events
Event: Bruce Nauman exhibition, with talk by curator Jennifer Alexander
Date: Friday 13th September
Time: 5:30pm meet at Wakefield Westgate train station, to alight the mini bus for 6:30pm arrival
Where: York St Mary's, Castlegate, York, YO1 9RN
Cost: £10 - which includes transport & talk.
Booking: Get in touch
We've arranged an out of hours visit to the Bruce Nauman exhibition at York St Mary's on Friday 13th September, with a talk by the exhibition curator Jennifer Alexander. Picking up at Wakefield Westgate train station at 5.30pm. There are 5 places left, please get in touch if you would like to join us on the magic neon mini bus!
Event: Animating NYC presentation by Jeff Friedman
Date: Saturday 14th September
Where: Neon Workshops, Wakefield, WF1 1DL
Cost: FREE (donations welcome)
Booking: No booking required - just turn up on the day
Jeff Friedman, the owner of the world's most famous neon company Let There Be Neon, NYC, is in the UK for two days and on Saturday evening will be presenting at Neon Workshops. Expect to hear inside stories of ambitious neon projects from the 1970's to the present day, collaborations with celebrities and scandals from the city that never sleeps.
Moving Neon: Let There be Neon!
One space left
A head of steam has been building for our next special 4-day workshop, Moving Neon, during the summer, so it was a painful blow when the news arrived last week that the lead tutor Michael Flechtner (LA) had to pull out last minute due to illness. Determined to turn a negative into a positive, we stepped up to the challenge, took a wild shot and approached Jeff Friedman; the owner of the worlds most famous neon company Let There Be Neon, asking if he'd be willing to get involved with us in some way ...he said YES!
We were ecstatic to find out on Saturday evening that Jeff had accepted our invitation to take part as a tutor on Moving Neon! Let There Be Neon was set up in 1972 by Rudi Stern, a multimedia artist famed for his avant-garde light shows, and it has been one of the worlds most preeminent creators of neon signage since then, with clients including Martin Creed, Tracey Emin and Maurizio Nannucci. We are truly honoured to be welcoming Friedman (NYC), who will be flying over to share his knowledge, ideas and experiences of being at the centre of some of the most exciting major neon projects of the last 40 years.
We only have one space left for this workshop now, so please get in touch ASAP if you wish to join us! A schedule is available on request.
Neon Workshops Summer 2013 Competition
We have an exciting competition this summer with 1 free place on our special
4-day workshop 'Moving Neon' up for grabs!
Moving Neon - Competition now closed!
Magdalena Jetelová confirmed for February 2014 Iceland workshop
After the huge success of Paris last year, we are raising the bar once again and setting our sights on the Northern Lights, and we are thrilled to announce that world renowned Danish artist Magdalena Jetelová is now confirmed as artist in residence! Plans are currently underway for four days of neon light themed workshops and events in Iceland during February 2014.
The price will include neon/glass making workshop, materials, breakfast & lunch and accommodation. We will also be organising evening events, a seminar and excursion to see the Aurora Borealis. We will be accepting participant bookings on this landmark 4-day neon light themed venture from September 1st, but for more information please see WORKSHOPS.
Special 2013 neon courses launched!
2013 has barely begun yet Neon Workshops has already confirmed two very special courses to be staged here later in the year. The first; Keep Neon and Carry On, to be held at the end of July, sees New York artist and Associate Professor Angus Powers lead an experimental hot glass and neon based workshop, with assistance from Wheater & Bickerstaff. For many years Powers has continued to inspire with his determined unconventional approach to glass and neon.
In September we have renowned Los Angeles neon artist Michael Flechtner not only exhibiting here, but he has agreed to fly over and teach a four day course on the subject of Moving Neon. Flechtner's artwork has a strong tradition of using electronic sequences and often mechanized kinetic forms, to playfully move light and physically animate a scene.
Both Powers and Flechtner are heavy weights in their field and the above opportunities are truly unique. We can only offer eight places for each of the workshops. Please book now to avoid disappointment.
Cent ans de Néon... au revoir Paris x
Thank you to everyone involved in our latest Mobile Neon Workshop Cent ans de Néon, in helping to make it one of our finest projects to date! Please follow the link here to view the photographs taken during the 4-days. The photograph above shows two of the workshop tutors Wheater & Bickerstaff performing What am I? outside the Lycée Polyvalent Dorian. The generator powered neon riddle was temporarily staged around the streets of Paris and will soon head over to the Ebeltoft Glass Museum in Denmark to be exhibited as a tryptic in a group neon show from December 1st - March 10th.
Cent ans de Néon update
- A 100-year hands on celebration of the worlds most famous man-made light.
- Four days of demonstrations and evening presentations/events.
- Eight participants will be assissted in transforming their ideas into neon by 4 international neon makers/artists from the UK, USA and France.
When and Where?
- Tuesday 9th - Friday 12th October 2012.
- 10am - 12.30pm & 1.30pm - 5pm
(7.30pm - 9pm evening presentations/events are optional to attend)
- Workshop venue: Lycée Polyvalent Dorian, 74 Avenue Philippe, Auguste, 75011 Paris, France.
This was the first school in the world to offer an 'O' Level qualification in Neon glass blowing.
- The evening presentations will be held at different venues in Paris and will be revealed at a later date.
- Fee includes Paris central hotel for 5 nights, plus breakfast and lunch.
Over a ten week period, a group from the city's homeless community worked with artist Richard William Wheater, on a project that aimed to develop their visual language through light and communicate their predicament to the wider public. The results were a series of extraordinary neon signs that will be exhibited here at Neon Workshops from 28.03 (preview 5pm-9pm) - 19.05.2012.
No More I Love Yous...
On Valentines Day 2012, 12 MONTHS OF NEON LOVE will be switched off for the last time as the year long project between artists Victoria Lucas and Richard William Wheater draws to a close. They are marking this occassion with a day of events, starting with a live auction where you will be able to bid on the remaining unsold lyrics from the series. Then at 8pm please join them here at Neon Workshops for the final switch off, with live music and a DJ.
Swedish glass artist Helena Kågebrand is exhibiting this beautful piece of neon artwork at The Glass Factory in Sweden. We had the pleasure of being commissioned to produce the neon, that was then expertly concealed in the borosilicate bottle by lamp worker and visiting neon workshop tutor Jochen Holz. The exhibition 'Hot Spot' will run until 26/02/2012. Good Luck with it Helena!
2012 Neon Workshop Dates
If you haven't already had the chance to join us for a workshop, you might be able to in the new year. Here are the 2012 dates for our One Day Intensive course:
Friday 24th February
Friday 23rd March
Friday 20th April
Friday 11th May
Closed throughout August.
Friday 19th October
Friday 16th November
Friday 7th December
To mark Neons 100th year anniversay during 2012, we'll be facilitating a very special Mobile Neon Workshop in Paris entitled 'Cent Ans de Neon', taking place from Thursday 13th - Sunday 16th September.
More information will follow soon, but if you are interested in joining us in Paris then please get in touch now as places are limited!
If you're interested in joining us for a workshop get in touch via email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Neon Workshops Featured in SignLink Magazine The November issue of SignLink magazine features an article about Neon, and the arguments between Neon vs. LED signage. You can read the article by clicking on the image above.
Lucy Skaer: Film for an Abandoned Projector
Lyric House, Armley - 29th September – 15th December 2011
In the darkness of the derelict Lyric House in the Armley area of Leeds, the cinema’s old Kalee projector plays a new 35mm film. Specific to its place, Skaer's sculptural film work is the imagined subconscious of the projector itself ... Through repeated screenings, the film slowly bears witness to its own presentation through scratches and marks that visibly scar and efface the surface of the image. At the end of the project the cinema will once again be dormant.
Neon Workshops are proud to be involved in restoring the neon letters adorning the front of Lyric House as part of Skaer's project.
The Neon Universe arrives!
The workshop we had all been waiting for finally arrived, participants and teachers decended upon Wakefield's Neon Workshops from all over the world. Few knew what to expect by bringing together Such names in neon as Dilling, Wheater, Peterson and Bickerstaff, however we think one persons reflections on the four day ...and night neon extravaganza summerises it well; 'fully packed with experiences, of a personal, spiritual, artistic, physical, astronomical and intelectual nature'.
We're already working on how to build on such a 4 day neon course, hopefully to be based in Paris next year!
Tutor Matt Dilling (left) shares some pearls of wisdom with Ben Hamilton
The Neon Universe: Evening Presentations
The Neon Universe evening presentations are open to everyone and anyone interested in neon light, electricity and its use in the creative industry.
Event Speakers and Venues
Thursday 8th September
7:30pm – 9pm
Matt Dilling (New York), Shawna Peterson (San Francisco), master Neon maker Julia Bickerstaff (UK) and artist Richard WIlliam Wheater each give a short presentation of their experiences woking with neon.
Where: Durkar Chapel Studio, 433 Denby Dale Rd East, Wakefield, WF4 3LT.
Fee: £3 per person (free to workshop participants)
Presentation: Neon in the Universe
Friday 9th September
7:30pm – 9pm
Astronomer Kevin Read gives a presentation exploring the mysteries surrounding neon light and electricity and offers an insight into its relationship with the Universe.
Where: Rosse Observatory, Carleton Community Centre, Carleton Rd, Pontefract, WF8 3RJ.
Fee: £3 per person (free to workshop participants)
Presentation: Artists working with Neon The image above shows the beautiful limited edition silkscreen print posters that were commissioned to celebrate Septembers major neon sculpture course, created by the legendry comic book artist and wall muralist 'Phlegm'. Matt Dilling (New York) and Shawna Peterson (San Francisco) join Julia Bickerstaff (UK) and artist Richard William Wheater to teach their own styles of working with glass, flame and light at Neon Workshops. During the workshop, as well as the chance to design and produce your own piece of neon art, three evening seminars will take place. The mysteries surrounding neon and electricity's relationship with the Universe are themes to be presented at venues including Rosse Observatory and an art collectors converted church. I'm Electric, You're Electric is a body of gas filled hot glass sculpture by Wheater, commissioned by Manchester Craft & Design Centre. The solo exhibition will be showing from 12th February - 30th April 2011, with a preview 2-4pm on the 12th of February featuring live electronic music.
Saturday 10th September
7:30pm – 9pm
Dr Madeleine Newman will explore the innovative ways in which artists have experimented with neon as a medium for art since the 1950's. She will investigate the use of neon within a range or artistic practices and its potential as a medium for creating text-based work, sculpture, installation, architectural interventions and performance art. Does neon art intersect between established categories of art making, such as painting, sculpture and installation art?
Where: Neon Workshops, 70b George Street, Wakefield, WF1 1DL.
Fee: £3 per person (free to workshop participants)
These evening presentations are free for The Neon Universe participants ... of which there are still several places available!
The image above shows the beautiful limited edition silkscreen print posters that were commissioned to celebrate Septembers major neon sculpture course, created by the legendry comic book artist and wall muralist 'Phlegm'. Matt Dilling (New York) and Shawna Peterson (San Francisco) join Julia Bickerstaff (UK) and artist Richard William Wheater to teach their own styles of working with glass, flame and light at Neon Workshops. During the workshop, as well as the chance to design and produce your own piece of neon art, three evening seminars will take place. The mysteries surrounding neon and electricity's relationship with the Universe are themes to be presented at venues including Rosse Observatory and an art collectors converted church.
I'm Electric, You're Electric is a body of gas filled hot glass sculpture by Wheater, commissioned by Manchester Craft & Design Centre. The solo exhibition will be showing from 12th February - 30th April 2011, with a preview 2-4pm on the 12th of February featuring live electronic music.
12 Months of Neon Love is a collaboration by artists Victoria Lucas and Richard William Wheater. It is formed using lyrical statements borrowed from well-known songs that feature the many configurations of love. Expressions of intimacy, adoration and heartbreak are visually re-presented to an unsuspecting audience going about their everyday lives. The Project began on St Valentines day 2011 and finish Valentines day 2012. A sequence of twelve quotes will be presented over twelve months in large red neon text. Visible from the railway, the work will be erected on the roof of the Neon Workshops studio in Wakefield, West Yorkshire. Each set of lyrics will be exhibited for one month then auctioned on eBay to financially suport the project. We are indebted to the expertise of neon maker Julia Bickerstaff and her support in kind at Neon Workshops.
Neon Lights- Richard William Wheater
Sheffield. 1/12 - 18/12/2010
A mobile neon-making unit will accompany the artist to the space where, through intense practice, he will create light-filled text in the gallery. Over the two weeks, the text will change in quality and speed of production. At the end of each day completed work will be mounted on the gallery wall and illuminated, and by the end of the two weeks a neon installation will be displayed relevant in meaning to the project.
Neon workshops mobile unit prepares for its maiden voyage to the northern lights this October, heading to S12 Gallery in Bergen, Norway offering 2 four day courses. A neon exhibition will take place in the same venue from the 5th of November. For images of this great workshop and exhibition, go to our facebook page.
Neon Workshops finds permanent home at 70b George Street. An industrial unit 2 minutes walk from Wakefield Westgate Railway station is the subject of attention as refurbishment continues. Both teachers and Participants travel from all over to take these neon courses with high expectations so it's important to create the best facility here possible. This space and location gives us just that opportunity.
The Neon World
Only a few weeks to go before the first neon course is due to be held at Neon Workshops new 1000sqft unit in Wakefield. Teachers are starting to prepare, the course is now fully booked and we're all excited here, looking forward to four days in September that promise to be the real highlight of Neon Workshops 2010 calendar.
Wheater at: The Hepworth Wakefield
A neon performance/installation to take place for one night only in the new Hepworth Wakefield Gallery during July's Artwalk (28th) In conjunction with the project Swap, will see 5 artists responding to Barbara Hepworth's sculpture 'Mother And Child' (on show at Westgate Studios on the same evening). Wakefield Artist and founder of Neon Workshops Richard William Wheater will be performing a new work entitled SIRENS, that will also double up as a temporary installation. Wheater's last dramatic Performance/Installation Disappearing Paths' (pic below from YSP performance 2009) which took place in September last year is still talked about. We hope this next neon work is just as successful ...good luck Rich!
Horizon Arts Theatre Group are soon to be showing at Edinburgh's Fringe Festival, this time their stage set includes a large neon centre piece
that they commissioned Neon Workshops to make. Their show 'Uber Hate Gang' has already been voted no 1 in the top 40 recommended
theatre and drama shows at the festival by Fringe Review, and we're proud to be sponsoring such an aspiring and talented young company.
'Scandinavian Light In Wakefield' was a project involving the introduction of neon to 6 Scandinavian glass artists through a one week course at Neon Workshops, resulting in an exhibition on the 26th of November 2008 at Westgate Studios, Wakefield.