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New Ashgate Gallery Trust Waggon Yard Farnham GU9 7PS 01252 713208 Registered charity no. 274326 19 October 2012

Tessa Pearson wins in the Surrey Artist of the Year 2012/13 For immediate release

The Surrey Artist of the Year competition celebrates arts in Surrey. The prize is in its fourth year and celebrates the partnership between the New Ashgate Gallery and the Surrey Artists Open Studios. Each year the exhibition showcases a variety of artworks created in the region. This year’s winner, Tessa Pearson, is passionate about colour. Her work is an intuitive response to recollections of moments in time and special places, inspired by pattern and rhythms in space. Her current practice is focused on watercolour painting, mixed media and printmaking, working in series to explore and revisit a theme many times. Tessa’s bold abstract prints are mostly original monotypes using oil etching inks, built up in many layers and richly textured with additional elements of collage, hand painting and individual laser cut woodblock printed imagery. Her original techniques have evolved using vivid colours and bold abstract mark making to express the physical and emotional impact she experiences when immersed in a wonderful exotic garden or dramatic patchwork landscape. Tessa works from her studio at home in Surrey. She has an MA Printed Textiles, Royal College of Art and a BA (Hons) Textile Design, West Surrey College of Art & Design. She exhibits in solo and selected group shows nationwide, and her work is included in many private and corporate collections. Tessa will receive a solo exhibition in the New Ashgate Gallery and a cash prize of £1000 that will support her professional development. She is available for interviews.

The Surrey Artist of the Year group exhibition was held in the New Ashgate Gallery on 7 September – 21 October 2012, showcasing the artists with the most votes by the public counted from the Surrey Artists Open Studios, the summer event. The artists in the group exhibition were Amanda Cobbett, Emma Dunbar, Chris Forsey, Gillian Harris, Christine Hopkins, Jo Lovelock, Fiona Millais, Peg Morris, Tessa Pearson, Roger Roberts, Joe Szabo, Jean Tolkovsky and Barbara Westwell. During the exhibition, 242 members of the public voted again for the favourite artist. Three artists who received the highest number of public votes were Tessa Pearson, Amanda Cobbett and Fiona Millais. From these artists, a panel of judges selected the Surrey Artist of the Year 2012-13. The panel consisted of Barrie Higham, the Surrey County Council, Professor Kerstin Mey, the University for Creative Arts and Robert Moore, the Baines Charitable Trust. According to Robert Moore, “The exhibition in the beautiful space of the New Ashgate Gallery showcases both Surrey artists and the beautiful county.” Professor Mey also adds: “Surrey Artist of the Year exhibition is a demonstration of the very different ways of making objects and art.” The Surrey Artist of the Year is an important part of the New Ashgate's mission as an educational charity. The New Ashgate Gallery Trust is dedicated to promoting and championing the best contemporary art and craft and to provide an unparalleled resource in Farnham, Surrey and beyond. The exhibition enables us to support emerging and established artists in partnership with the Surrey Arts: it includes professional practice seminars to artists and brings new artwork from studios to the market place. It also enables the artists to find new audiences and to develop a relationship with a professional gallery. The Surrey Artist of the Year Competition is supported by the Baines Charitable Trust. Images by Tessa Pearson: Garden Dreams Blue, monoprint with woodblock, 45x60cm Blue Allum Stripe, monoprint with woodblock, 45x60cm Catalogue: Info film: Further images and information: Email: Tel: 01252 713208

Tessa Pearson wins in the Surrey Artist of the Year 2012/13