Strong Island Co.

Cultural & Exhibitions

Under the Spotlight Coming Soon at Coastguard Studio

Under the Spotlight is an upcoming exhibition that will feature 40 spotlights on artwork & photography by 40+ local creatives, all homed in the beautiful new Coastguard Studio in Southsea. More details on the exhibition will be announced in the coming weeks by the Coastguard Studio so keep an eye on their website at and the date of 13th February firmly written in to your new diaries.

Under the Spotlight Coming Soon at Coastguard Studio

‘Lines of Best Fit’ at Aspex Guildhall Featuring Ilse Black and Daniel Ginns

Next week sees the artist preview and opening of the new aspex Guildhall’s exhibition showcasing drawn works by Ilse Black and Daniel Ginns and the systems used in order to create them. Lines of Best Fit will feature existing artworks and two site specific drawings; created especially for the aspex Guildhall space. Both artists have reacted within the limitations set by the space whilst continuing to expand the definition of ‘drawing’ within their current modes of practice.

Ilse Black, from Bournemouth, focuses on work that explores the ambiguity of perception and is a response to the mathematical structures, rhythms and patterns she sees in the world around her. Daniel is an old friend of Strong Island and Portsmouth ex-pat with a keen eye on the accidental and chaotic natural patterns plus a tireless pencil used to explore the intricacies of imperceptible movements. Damn fine skateboarder too. These two artists are an excellent pairing, curated by Ashley John, and sure to produce an unmissable exhibition.

Join aspex & Portsmouth Cultural Trust for an exclusive preview of the work on December 16th at 6pm at Portsmouth Guildhall – admission is free. Find out more at

‘Lines of Best Fit’ at Aspex Guildhall Featuring Ilse Black and Daniel Ginns
Ilse Black, ‘Biophillia, Scattered Dimensions’

Daniel Ginns Durational Line Drawing (5)
Daniel Ginns Durational Line Drawing

BORDERLINES Photography Exhibition at Coastguard Studio

After a hugely successful exhibition with My Dog Sighs and Midge the Coastguard Studio’s next exhibition opens on Monday, entitled ‘Borderlines’. The exhibition is comprised of photographs by University of Portsmouth photography students Cristian Jurji and Ioana Pirvu that explore the notions of territories, of dislocations and the figurative borders that society confronts.

Monday will be the opening evening from 6pm to 9pm and then the exhibition is open until the 11th at the following times:

Tuesday – 12pm – 5pm
Wedenesday – 12pm – 5pm
Thursday – 12pm – 5pm

Coastguard Studio is located at 91 Clarendon Road, Southsea, PO4 0SA. More can be found out at the Facebook event HERE.

BORDERLINES Photography Exhibition at Coastguard Studio

Foal Arts Salon Exhibition Opens on 4th December

Over the Solent in Ryde is the home of Foal Arts, an Isle of Wight focal point for the arts with an eye to promote local creativity not just on the island but further afield. At 7pm on Thursday 4th Dec you can join Foal Arts as they celebrate the opening of their Winter Salon. It is a chance to meet the artists and curators and enjoy a great night in their converted Wesleyan Chapel studios.

The Salon features many successful and investable artists with added Christmas magic including mulled wine on arrival and a musical vernissage. The salon is open from the 5th to the 8th and everyone is welcome to pop in and also enjoy Granny’s cafe/bar with a cup of tea and a homemade mince pie.

Exhibition runs Friday 5th – Monday 8th December 11am – 4.30pm. 23 Nelson street, Ryde, PO33 2EZ. (from town centre head along Cross street, cross George St onto Melville St, left onto nelson street, building halfway down on the right).

The exhibition includes works by:

Annik Cullinane, Barbara Long, Celia Wilkinson, Chris Jenkins, Eva Fraser Harris, Gillian Chapman, Lynda Gray, Lisa Heath, Hilary Hayton, Holly Maslen, Howard Hardiman, Ian Whitmore, Joanne hummel-Newell, Jacqueline Cook, Kitty Cooper, Kieron LeVine, Lisa Traxler, Lyndy Moles, Martin Swan, Matt Chambers, Melanie Swan, Paul Woods, Sara Netherway, Stephen Butterfield, Steve Miles & Zoe Barker.

Curator lead tours available by appointment. You can find out more at:

Foal Arts Salon Exhibition Opens on 4th December

Work Christmas Party Exhibition

Christmas is fast approaching, most of us have paid our deposits and are ready for our work christmas party. Everyone knows clichés, the mistletoe bearer, the overly honest drunk and the office flirt. Just spare a thought for freelance artists and creatives who miss out on all this. Not anymore! Work Christmas Party is exactly what it says, a Christmas Party, but with a tangible difference; it is an invitational show for freelancers who often miss out on the cultural marker of the working year.

Teaming up with the ambitious Columbia Road Arts Club, located in the vibrant East End and spiritual home of London’s creative and artistic community, Work Christmas Party will be both a two-week exhibition and Christmas shop, with a series of public events, book signings, and ample opportunities to meet the artists involved.

Structuring the proposal as a loose brief to the invited artists, they were asked to explore the theme of British Comedy.

South Coast ex-pat Aled Lewis will be one of the artist featured and his contribution to the event is the brilliant tribute to Blackadder. The A2 sized screen print was inspired by General Melchett from Blackadder and the iconic British Kitchener poster from World War 1.

Aled Lewis - Baaah

The exhibition opens this Wednesday 26th November from 5:30pm until 9pm, then the artists and organisers will be off for their own work christmas party. For more information about the event and the artists involved check out the Facebook, Twitter @wxpshow and Instagram @wxpshow. You can also get your hands on prints at

Mark Ward
3.Rose Stallard_Who-Likes-Me-Hands-Up
Rose Stallard
Work Christmas Party Poster

The Strong Island 2015 Calendar Exhibition & Strong Island Co Opening Party

Next Friday, 28th November, we’ll be officially launching the Strong Island 2015 Calendar with an exhibition in Strong Island Co of a selection of photography that features within the calendar. You’ll be able to see this excellent work capturing Southsea and Portsmouth up in the exhibition space until the end of the year but this will be a great opportunity to come down, pick up or buy your calendars and meet some of the contributing photographers.

As well as the exhibition opening we’ll also be celebrating the opening of Strong Island Co, our new shop/exhibition space/studio at 12 Highland Road. If you haven’t had a chance to pop in yet come along for a free beer or two and meet the crew, check the new Strong Island Clothing Co garments and accessories and get involved.

The exhibition and party opens from 7pm.

Check the flyer below for more details, the beautiful photo of the low tide sands of Southsea beach is by calendar contributor Mike Dassow.

The Strong Island 2015 Calendar Exhibition & Strong Island Co Opening Party

Castle Road Christmas Festival 2014

Castle Road has for a while been home to some fantastic little street festivals and today and tomorrow it’ll be home to the Castle Road Christmas Festival, a mix of music, food, art and more. The free event runs from 4pm today to 9pm and tomorrow it runs from 12pm to 7pm. Loads of local artists and makers will be selling their quality goods so it is a perfect place to get some of that Christmas shopping in early. The Christmas lights switch on is tonight too, at 6pm.

You can find out more at and over on Twitter at @CastleRoadSouth

Castle Road Christmas Festival 2014

Christmas Contemporary Makers Fair

This weekend Aspex Gallery will be hosting their Christmas Contemporary Makers Fair. The event show cases a number of artists and designer-makers who will be exhibiting and selling their work.

After the success of the events back in February & August, Aspex will once again be handing over its main exhibition space to showcase some of the very best contemporary craft in the region, this time with a festive twist.

A full list of the exhibitors selected by Aspex is now available, and features some of the very best contemporary craft in the region, across a range of artistic media, including jewellery, ceramics, printmaking, glass, textiles, amidst others.


The full list of everyone involved:

• Mitzi Broadbent –
• Jo Calverly –
• Sylvaine Frouin –
• Anikó Gajdocsi –
• Bryony Jennings –
• Carly Mann –
• Catherine McGinness –
• Emma Nicol –
• Rachel Reynolds –
• Martin Snelling
• Marina Skia –
• Miesje Chafer & Malisa Sledmere –
• Melody Vaughan –
• Dan Wendes –
• Mary & Julia de Klerk –

Find out more by visiting

Sylvaine Frouin
Marina Skia
Bryony Jennings
Bryony Jennings
Mary & Julia de Klerk

Temporary Men: Portsmouth Women In The First World War Exhibition

Donna Bish of the New Theatre Royal has been working in partnership with Portsmouth Academy for Girls, Priory School and Portsmouth High School in a project to research the role of Portsmouth women as “Temporary Men” during the First World War.

Funded by Portsmouth City Council and the Armed Forces Community Covenant the Portsmouth Central Library is hosting a free exhibition this week to celebrate thees women, their lives and their contributions to the war.

During her research Donna found three women who stood out: Hertha Ayrton, the Portsea born scientist and inventor who invented the Ayrton anti-gas fan which was used prolifically in the War; Yvonne Evans, granddaughter of Portsea Alderman Henry Evan and the first Portsmouth woman to register with the WRNS; and Beatrice Hobby, a Portsea lady who worked in the Dockyard for much of the war after her husband was killed in action. Students from Portsmouth High School are devising a new performance based on the lives of these women.

The New Theatre Royal explain that “the Exhibition, Temporary Men: Portsmouth Women in the First World War will display the students’ art, written and performance work as well as historical information and photos. A list of names of Portsmouth’s “Temporary Men” and their individual roles will be later published on the New Theatre Royal website.”

The exhibition runs for one week only, so don’t hang around as your last chance to see this will be on the 15th November. The exhibition itself is being held no the first floor but if you are not sure then any of the lovely members of staff will point you in the right direction.

If you have any information, anecdotes or share an interest in Portsmouth’s maternal ancestors I am assured Donne would love to hear from you! Please email


New Strong Island Co Opens This Saturday!

Strong Island invites all our friends old and new to our new home in Southsea, opening this Saturday (15th November) from 10am. Strong Island at 12 Highland Road is a new shop and exhibition space, stocking all of the Strong Island Clothing Co range, a selection of high quality art prints, releases from Strong Island Recordings plus a collection of fine leather accessories from Raw & Auburn. We will also have monthly guest artists and designers selling their work too.

Our first exhibition in the space is a retrospective of some of the designs, projects and events we have worked on in our 6 year history. We’ll be having regular exhibitions throughout the year with shows by local and visiting artists, designers & photographers.

Strong Island Co, 12 Highland Road, Southsea, PO4 9AH.

We will be open every week on Thursday, Friday & Saturday from 10am to 6pm.

New Strong Island Co Opens This Saturday!

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Amazing Vintage Naval Posters

I found these truly amazing posters on one of my many Flickr travels. All circa 1930s and all fantastic. Click the images for the direct links to Flickr.

Telly Savalas Looks at Portsmouth

There’s more than ‘meats’ the eye to Portsmouth. A city where everyone in the know goes. Classic stuff. Kojak takes time between sucking lollipops and fighting crime to give us the 411 on Portsmouth city through the ages. Love the eclectic soundtrack. Thanks to Harry for posting this up for us in a previous article. Here’s looking at you Portsmouth…

Created Local – Joe Loughborough

Joe Loughborough was a local skater in Southsea for years and years and recently made the move up to London and has been working hard with his painting. Joe is releasing a series of portraits for sale today, available to buy online. To see them and more check and Joe’s Flickr.





Pier and Snow

Here are a few photos from a walk down to the pier on Wednesday during the snowfall. There are some more over on Forever Circling.

Whiteout #2


Walk Together

Created Local – David Thompson

The Hiscock Gallery on Stanley Street behind Waitrose has some interesting new vintage style prints in stock by local artist David Thompson. They are a series of digitally drawn images reflecting upon 1930 – 1950s style advertising posters, enhanced with modern techniques. A really nice simplistic approach highlighting the main features of the subject, yet still very technical and intricate in places. The front of The Victory is awesome.

All reproductions are genuine giclée prints, printed with pigment based inks on 180gms Canon Matte paper, fade resistant for 100+ years. These “Poster” Prints are all personally signed by the artist. Head on over to Davids Gallery and take a look for yourself. Nice stuff for sure.

Strong Island Clothing Co.