WORKING TOGETHER: Ann Whitfield and Jane Young prepare for their Map of the Years exhibition
WORKING TOGETHER: Ann Whitfield and Jane Young prepare for their Map of the Years exhibition

THREE well known Teesdale artists have joined together for the first time in one collaborative exhibition titled Maps of Their Years, at The Witham gallery, which opens tonight (Thursday, November 22).

Sharon Loddey, Jane Young and Ann Whitfield, all members of the original Teesdale Artists Network, bring together three completely different media exploring life’s pathways in one colourful, vibrant month- long exhibition, which will run until Saturday, December 22.

The inspiration for the exhibition came from the title of a song, Maps of My Years, written by singer-songwriter Alice May, who is a friend of Ms Loddey.

Each artist has produced work inspired by the song.

Ms Loddey, from Winston, said: “I heard a song that my friend Alice had written. It really spoke to me.

“The lyrics tell a story of a woman who has struggled with self esteem and mental health problems who then finds her faith and her true identity.

“I could relate to this story as it was also my own.”

She added: “Using the song as the starting point for some new work I began to think of my own maps or routes through life.

“I’ve chosen eight moments that I think have shaped me as a person and that have brought me to this point today.

“The work is therefore in a way autobiographical. It starts with a series of lithographical prints but then opens up into paintings and a celebration of where I am blessed to be today.”

Watercolour artist Ms Whitfield said: “My work has dealt more literally with the idea of footpaths with snatched looks. Some of the work has been exhibited before, but there is a lot which is new.”

Sculptor Ms Young, who is known for her experimental mixed medium work, added: “I have been doing a lot of experimental work with concrete and resin and have taken inspiration from walks down by the River Tees near my home and have name the work After the Rain.”

A preview evening for the exhibition will take place between 5.30pm and 7.30pm on Thursday, November 22 when singer Ms May will also be performing.