MuseumintheParkAliPrettyIMG_5393Friday night saw the opening of a new exhibition at Stroud’s, Museum in the Park, which is part of this years Centenary celebration of the birth of famous poet and playwright Laurie Lee. ‘The Art of Walking’ is showcasing previously unseen drawings and paintings by Lee along with new work by artists inspired by his texts and also a from series of walks through his beloved landscapes of Slad, the Stroud Valleys and beyond.

Initially inspired by Laurie Lee’s novel “As I walked out One Midsummer Morning”, Ali Pretty along with walking partner Mike Johnston have produced a body of work inspired by their walk through the Pyrenees following in Lee’s footsteps and exploring the history and troubles of the local Catalonian people, in their battle for independence.

The Path to Independence is a response to our walk, the Catalan struggle, culture and landscape, and the artists who have, like us, been moved and inspired by the resilience and creativity of the people they met along the way. We have created a narrative in seven parts expressed through silk hangings, moving image and audio.” – Ali Pretty

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These seven beautiful hand painted silk hangings document the journey taken by Ali and Mike on their trip with textures, colours and patterns all influenced from discoveries along the way. As always, Ali’s work has created a stunningly colourful and vibrant entrance to the exhibition and will be a memorable aspect to all those who visit.

MuseumintheParkAliPrettyIMG_5398“Our journey on foot led us into unknown and unexpected places that gave us a fresh perspective on our own history as Europeans, encouraging us to consider more deeply the daily lives of our own parents and grandparents and the path that has led to us being able to walk freely across national borders. This September 11 2014 marks 300 years since Catalonia lost its independence and our work here is a celebration of the creativity, unity and resilience of Catalans in their struggle to determine their own future.” – Ali Pretty


The work is currently on show in the entrance way of the Museum and will be on open along with the exhibition until Sunday 5th October.

For more information on ‘The Art of Walking’ please click here: