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  • Writer's pictureRachel Bebb

Eye on the Artist - Rebecca Newnham FRSS

Rebecca Newnham sculptor

Rebecca's masterly Carbis Bay caught many an eye in the latest contemporary art exhibition, Our Ocean, at Rachel Bebb Contemporary.  A renowned artist, Rebecca Newnham captures light and movement in her dynamic sculptures and innovative glass panels, paying minute attention to detail. As a nature lover, environmental art - art with a message - is embedded in Rebecca's practice.  


"My work has always celebrated the natural world. My sculpture has explored botanical form, proportion, seeds, pollen, and seed dispersal, and looked at photosynthesis, considered growth, and how matter moves. Over the last seven years, I have enjoyed getting absorbed with the wall panels which are a way of capturing an experience of a place. As an artist creating work about the natural world and aware of the environmental crisis, I felt it important to emphasise that there is hope. We can observe that lichen is showing us where the natural world is in balance, where a mini ecosystem exists, working in symbiosis, in a mutually beneficial relationship. It reminds us to look out for those places where lichen thrives because this is where the local ecosystem is in balance and it sometimes looks wild and scrubby." (From a talk Rebecca gave in May 2024 at The Vanner Gallery, Salisbury.)

Rebecca Newnham Carbis Bay

 Carbis Bay (glass, glass enamel, timber frame, 92 x 15.4 x 12 cms, available on my website)


"The sea was turquoise, the contrast and similarity between the greens was vivid and hypnotic. It was very quiet and calm, and we became aware that a seal had surfaced below, she disappeared to return with her pup. The two swam and basked, then dived. It was a privilege to encounter the seals, such a treat. The glass of this panel weaves in and out, like the seals, and reminds me of how the eye alternately switches focus from the reflection of our ambient environment in the surface of the glass and the markings and intense colours of the glass enamels.” 


Rebecca's arresting work is represented in three museums, and private collections throughout the world. Commissions include large public art installations and sculptures for cruise ships. Her work has been selected for The New Glass Review, Corning Glass Museum, New York. She is a member of the board of trustees at the Royal Society of Sculptors.


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