Wednesday, 28 May 2014

Shelter Inspired Art

Here at Hus, we are supporting Shelterbox this year and we are pleased to promote the work of artist, Lindsey Morgan-Lundie who is using her work to highlight the plight of Syrian refugees through her art installation.

Lindsey Morgan Lundie painting a picture
Lindsey Morgan-Lundie

While on a mentoring course at Newlyn School of Art with nine other contemporary Cornish Artists, printmaker, Lindsey Morgan-Lundie was struck by a picture of a refugee child standing outside a tent in Syria. ‘I was exploring the idea of portraiture, when I came across a haunting image of a girl’s face’ she explained.  Lindsey was moved to find out more about refugees and set off on a journey of exploration that led to an art installation at the PZ Gallery in Penzance between 7-11 June 2014.  

Lindsey discovered a love of printing during her Fine Art degree in Falmouth in 2007.  Since graduating she has exhibited her prints on many occasions and is currently the resident printmaker at Cornwall College in Camborne, where she teaches students various printing techniques.  She was thrilled to be selected to go on the first mentoring course at Newlyn, where she works alongside an eclectic mix of other local artists.  It was here that she started to consider the themes of shelter, relationship and community.

The final show will feature end of year work from all of the artists being mentored at Newlyn, and will include paintings, films and installations.  Lindsey’s own installation will feature multiple small tents, made using wax. Each one unique and fragile, exploring our inherent need for communication and relationship.

‘When disasters happen, communities often pull together,’ Lindsey said ‘Its been interesting to explore how we crave relationship and don’t like the feeling of isolation’.  Each tiny wax tent, will be individually printed with an varied mix of near Eastern patterns, original drawings and pictures of nature.  ‘I love the quality and fragility of wax and the fact  that it allows me to create layers of meaning within the work’ Lindsey explained.

Entry to the PZ Gallery is free and events during the exhibition are being planned, so keep an eye on the Newlyn School of Art website for more details.

Showroom PZ Gallery Poster advertising end of year show from Newlyn Art School

Newlyn School of Art Mentoring Course Final Show
PZ Gallery
7 Coinage Street
TR18 4AY

More information from 

Open Saturday 7th June 11am
Private View June 7th 6-9pm

Open Sunday to Wednesday 11-6pm each day

Tuesday, 20 May 2014

What to do if you have Mundic in your house

Did you know that Mundic is a Cornish slang word?  From about the 1900’s to the 1960’s some of the waste from the Cornish mines was used in the making of concrete blocks.  It probably seemed like a good idea at the time and must have felt like a cheap, early form of recycling.  

However, as the years passed, it was discovered that some of the bits of iron ore used in the mix became unstable when wet.  This really came to light as we started to install unventilated double-glazing into our houses in the 1970’s.  We might well have been nice and warm, but the moisture trapped in the houses made the walls damp and consequently the concrete blocks started to degrade and crumble.

A picture of concrete breeze blocks

You will probably find that if you are buying a house in Cornwall built between 1900 and 1965, your mortgage company will ask that you have a Mundic test.  The test costs approximately £350 and will involve a specialist drilling holes and taking samples of the concrete.  The concrete is tested and the results will fall into 4 classes: A and A/B will be sound and safe, whilst B will be sound but likely to cause problems in the future and lastly C which is clearly unsound. 

Houses that are affected by Mundic are generally sold at a lower price because of the difficulties of getting a mortgage, which means if you are a cash buyer, you may well pick up a bargain.  It might be that just one wall needs replacing or in the worst cases, you may wish to consider re-development of the site.

The good news for sellers, according to Cornwall Consultants, is that 80% of the 14,000 houses they have checked, come back with an class ‘A’  and only 5% end up with a class ‘C’.  If your house, was to fall into either the B or C classes, then you should have a chat with your Estate Agent who can advise you on what you should do next and how it might be best to help you market your house.

Wednesday, 14 May 2014

Writing a new chapter in a Newlyn home

The arrival of super-fast broadband and the rise in popularity in remote working gives many people the opportunity to make Cornwall their home.  Copywriters, Dee and Gerard are no exception.  

Following their marriage in 2009 at the beautiful Trereife House near Penzance, they "up'd sticks" from London and re-located to West Cornwall.  After a period of renting, they bought a 3 bedroom terraced house in the centre of busy fishing port, Newlyn.

A picture of Dee in the pantry and Gerard relaxing in their Newlyn home

Dee describes how, since 2009, the charming Edwardian House has been ‘lovingly restored.’ “We decided to update the house and bring it firmly into the 21st century” she revealed “It took a team of helpers to strip the house of the wood chip wallpaper, re-plaster and re-point. We removed gas fires, installed period cast iron fireplaces, renewed the electrics and generally ‘de-70’d it’.”  During the renovation, they even found a fire-place surround although, to their surprise, it was tucked under the lounge floorboards!  The house, which had been garishly decorated in the 1970’s has now been given a new lease of life and brightened up using contemporary neutral colours.

A picture of an Edwardian terraced house in Newlyn
The lounge in a Newlyn Edwardian Terraced house

Dee loves to cook in her light filled kitchen but confesses that the duel aspect loft is her favourite room.  “The views of Mounts Bay on one side with the harbour and town on the other, make it a fantastic room to work in” she said “Because of the nature of our business, we are in this room for so long, it’s inspirational to see the town busy at work whilst we write.”

They have a clear affection for Newlyn and the Mounts Bay area. ’There’s a great sense of community and solidarity in the road we live in and we will miss it very much”  Dee acknowledged.  In fact they love the area so much that they spend their spare time, along with a photographer friend, compiling a blog called the Penzance Post which captures the essence of Mounts Bay along with current events and activities.

Dee and Gerard decided that although they have clearly enjoyed making the house relevant and suited to the 21st century, the time has come for them to be nearer family.  So with a degree of hesitancy they have decided to move a little nearer the centre of Cornwall.  Dee concluded “We are very fond of this house and the neighbourhood, but the time is right for us to move and we won’t be too far away from the friends we have made”