Immersed by the open sea

Immersion by Frances Anderson
Immersion by Frances Anderson

An Alnwick artist is sharing her love of the sea and swimming at her first solo exhibition.

Immersion, a new body of print and photography-based work by Frances Anderson, is showing at the Customs House in South Shields until Sunday, June 15, having opened last week.

And while many artists and photographers are inspired by the sea, Frances, who is set to take on a studio at Gallery 45 in Felton, likes to get closer than most.

A keen open-water swimmer, she tackled the Channel in July 2008, making it across in 19 hours and 46 minutes.

“Many of my images are taken from in the water on training swims in Northumberland,” said Frances.

“I am currently training for a Gibraltar Strait swim next year and swim in the North Sea at ridiculous temperatures all year round for training and collecting material for my work.”

But tackling the chilly depths of the North Sea has paid off so far as one of her images was printed in the Guardian Do Something Magazine in April.

Frances also had an image in the Royal Photographic Society Images for Screen Exhibition 2013 and received an honourable mention for a photograph in the International Photography Awards 2013.

“I have also just received an Arts Council Grant to fund the exhibition and to work with children and families from a deprived estate in South Shields around the themes of the exhibition culminating in their own exhibition,” she added.

According to the exhibition material, Frances’ ‘experimental work explores the shifting moods of water and the deep awareness of pattern and texture, colours and waterline traces’.