Exhibiting Sheffield painter’s lifetime of art

ballaw, SNOOKER STARS PORTRAITS   Local artist John Gilbert,  at the Winter Garden for the launch of the   Snooker Stars Portrait Exibition .                                20 April 2005
ballaw, SNOOKER STARS PORTRAITS Local artist John Gilbert, at the Winter Garden for the launch of the Snooker Stars Portrait Exibition . 20 April 2005
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As an artist, John Gilbert mastered nearly every style there is to learn - from watercolours to abstracts and even court sketches.

When he died last year aged 82, John left behind a large collection comprising hundreds of artworks at the home he shared with wife Helena on Oakbrook Road, Nether Green.

But now Helena is downsizing - so an exhibition is being organised at the family home, where visitors will be able to view the breadth of John’s talents with around 500 artworks available to buy.

The pieces range from small oil paintings to larger works and prints, including portraits and observational drawings of local scenes. Prices range from £5 up to several hundred pounds.

During his lifetime John won widespread recognition for his work, including the honour of having his paintings shown at the Royal Academy.

He was also the holder of a silver medal from the Paris Salon academy, and was skilled at producing rapid sketches of criminal trials. John taught art at Abbeydale Grammar School for girls and was also a member of the Hallam Art Group.

His daughter Briony Avery said: “My dad produced hundreds and hundreds of paintings throughout his life and there’s no way we can take them all. Nearly everything will be for sale.”

Briony added: “Painting was his greatest love. He never stuck to one style - he was always experimenting. He would see a style and say ‘I’ll learn that’. He’d make one of his own to see if he could work out how the artist had done it.”

Court sketches will not be for sale, however.

“As far as we’re concerned, they’re sensitive,” Briony explained. “We hope people will enjoy the exhibition. Even if they just come to have a look, that’s fine. I’d rather they bought something but it’s not compulsory!”

n The exhibition, at 4 Oakbrook Road, is next weekend, February 14 and 15, from 9am to 5pm both days. Admission free.