Tuesday, 22 March 2011

Neti & Hugo

Hugo Colville - Yet-another-day - Seen here

I went with Meg and Mary from Oriel Myrddin and our graphic designer, Heidi Baker, on a studio visit today to meet an artist couple who live in the hills above Newport in North Pembrokeshire. Neti and Hugo - Annette de Mestre and Hugo Colville. Heidi drove us out to where they live. Once you have negotiated a wild 1/2 mile track through beautiful countryside, past a  duck pond/lake with a wee rowing boat, you see their little blue traditional cottage; but they don't live in there, they have a studio/home/shop in a utilitarian, corrugated structure nearby. You enter first of all into a small shop area selling their cards and bound books, prints and paintings which nestle alongside their collections of beautiful old objects, bottles, pots, old glass baubles. You are invited to examine Hugo's Button Museum - a beautiful, theatrical set of old wooden draws full of delightful vintage buttons, shell, textile, glass, ceramic...

Annette de Mestre - Blissful - Seen here

Beyond this entrance is their living and working space; a covetable old plan chest, a little kitchen area looking across the garden, an old wooden table and mis matched chairs, iron chandeliers full of cobwebs. Neti and Hugo strike you as a mythical couple, they are the living embodiment of the stories and books they make together, it is a miracle that they found each other and made this life together, it struck me that it could not have been any other way, they would have found each other across oceans. It made me feel deeply happy to know that they just work away there every day, finding the beauty in little objects and thinking about it, writing about it, drawing it - living cheek-by-jowl with their work. I feel very privileged to have been introduced to them, and look forward to finding out more about their extraordinary life and work.

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