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"Behind the Curtain" - solo show by Neil Prior

SELF taught professional artist, Neil Prior, who is from Ainsdale, who needs no introduction to the Region, is making a welcome return to the ArtHouse in Southport with a 3 week solo-showcase:- "Behind the Curtain," presenting 6 new oil paintings, each a further testament to Neil's artistry and penchant for storytelling.

Stepping into the gallery, viewers are immediately drawn into the world Neil has meticulously created. Each painting commands its own space, inviting the observer to immerse him or herself in its narrative. As the curtains are drawn, the boundaries between reality and imagination blur, allowing spectators to craft their own stories within the rich tapestry of Neil's work.


Inspired by a transformative visit to Vermeer's exhibition at the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam, Neil has poured his creativity into 6 distinct pieces, ranging in size and scope. Among them:- "Love's Language," the largest canvas measuring:- 4 feet by 3 feet, beckons viewers into a scene where a billowing curtain frames a table adorned with intriguing objects. Reminiscent of the masterful storytelling of William Hogarth's:- "Before and After," Neil strategically places a nod to the old master on the back wall of this particular piece, enhancing the depth of its narrative.

Each composition is a product of Neil's boundless imagination, infused with elements of love, deceit, and the possibility of intrigue. As spectators engage with Neil's works, they find themselves not just passive observers but active participants, allowing their souls to intertwine with the evocative imagery before them.

Originally from Christchurch in Dorset, Neil recently moved into the area with his wife, Martha and their 2 Bedlington Terriers, Bruce and Herbert, who equally stepped from:- 'behind the curtain' by making local news back in 2019 due to eating palm oil that had washed up on Ainsdale Beach from the Maltese ship, Kimya, that capsized nearly 30 years ago after storms dislodged its toxic cargo.

Having retired from full service as a Police officer with the Leicestershire constabulary in 2018, Neil has now finally swapped his truncheon for his paintbrush, and evolved his life long love of oil painting into a professional business.

Unbelievably, Neil only began painting in 2008, after attending a 1 day workshop on how to paint in the Bob Ross Wet-on-Wet Oil Painting technique facilitated by Jayne Good, which he quickly followed up with a further weekend course with professional Fine Artist, Mike Skidmore.


Over the years, Neil's gregarious attitude to art has seen him expand his repertoire across a diverse range of subjects:- "I started using oils in 2012 and offered bespoke commissions over a variety of subjects from:- landscapes, seascapes, portraiture, still life, wildlife and nature and lately, abstract works. I registered as a self employed business in November 2019 continuing to paint commissions and exhibit in local galleries."

Neil is always enjoys seeking new challenges and:- "Behind the Curtain" offers a further insight into his creative output.

There will be several opportunities for visitors to:- 'Meet the Artist' when Neil will be in the Gallery for limited times on:- Saturday, 27 April, Tuesday, 30 April, Saturday, 4 May, and Tuesday, 7 May 2024.

More of Neil's work is available to view on his website:- NneilPrior.Com.

Certainly not 1 to be missed, this latest showing by Neil will be on display at:- ArtHouse, Eastbank Street, Southport, from:- 23 April to 11 May 2024.

Liverpool Philharmonic Announces new partnership with The Karlsson Játiva Charitable Foundation and their Signatur Programme in support of In Harmony Liverpool

ROYAL Liverpool Philharmonic is thrilled to announce a new 3 year partnership with The Karlsson Játiva Charitable Foundation after being awarded a grant from the Foundation's Signatur Programme in support of In Harmony Liverpool.

In Harmony Liverpool's vision is a healthier, higher achieving future for North Liverpool. Launched in 2009 and supporting over 4,000 children, young people and their families in Anfield and Everton, the programme is targeted at children with the greatest need; over 40% of In Harmony children are classed as living in poverty. This long-term community programme is central to Liverpool Philharmonic's mission to enhance and transform lives through music. Through the provision of free musical, pastoral, and skills education, In Harmony inspires children, young people and their families to celebrate their community through music and to gain the confidence to change their own lives and shape their future.

Through their Signatur Programme, The Karlsson Játiva Charitable Foundation have made a sizeable investment in In Harmony from 2024-2027. Their support is focussed on the development and expansion of Liverpool Philharmonic's activity for:- 11 to 18 year olds that was launched in 2022 and includes Youth Hubs and Talent Development. Through their support, In Harmony will continue to use the uniting power of music to make a sustained, significant impact on the children, young people, families, and communities of Anfield and Everton.

Erland Karlsson, Trustee and Founder, The Karlsson Játiva Charitable Foundation said:- "The Signatur Programme is thrilled to initiate this multi year collaboration to expand the In Harmony Youth Hubs and Talent Development programmes for:- 11 to 18 year olds. What has struck us when seeing In Harmony in action is how it is genuinely part of the community. This support will hopefully further open up opportunities for many young people in the Anfield and Everton areas to pursue their ambitions in music and other strands of life."

Michael Eakin, CEO of Liverpool Philharmonic, said:- "We are delighted to be partnering with The Karlsson Játiva Charitable Foundation on our In Harmony work. The support of like minded organisations is crucial in allowing us to best serve our communities through the transformative power of music. We are incredibly grateful for their belief in our organisation, and we look forward to working closely with them over the coming years."

This year, In Harmony Liverpool celebrated its 15th Anniversary. Evaluation from the newly released study by the University of Liverpool shows that In Harmony promotes resilience in its children and families via increased self-confidence, skills competence, self knowledge, the development of social skills and the ability to face challenges. In Harmony also helps to increase inclusion and sense of belonging amongst its communities. Findings show that whilst the programme cannot remove hardship or inequalities, it can and does provide families and children with life skills and resources that they can use to manage and adapt to stress both in and outside the programme, now and in the future.

The full study can be found here:- ISSUU.Com/LiverpoolPhilharmonic.

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