The Hive at the Temple Brighton Girls



The Hive at the Temple Brighton Girls

By mid summer busy bumblebees buzz away collecting pollen at the Gardens of Brighton Girls School by The Temple building.

Digital pigment print from original ink drawings. Printed on fine art paper using archival inks. Available in sizes A0,A1, A2, A3 or A4 as limited editions of 100. Each print is individually signed and numbered.

Pavilion Gardens

In Autumn 2022, Brighton Girls GDST school contacted me to created a print to commemorate the extraordinary restoration and redesign and restoration of The Temple.

Brighton Girls home from 1880 ‘The Temple’ building was commissioned by Thomas Read Kemp in 1819 and designed by Amon Wilds. This beautiful building has seen many changes over the years and today is a wonderfully restored and contemporary hub for Brighton Girls.

Thank you Rebecca Findlay and Brighton Girls team for driving this project to completion. This print celebrates the restoration and refurbishment of ‘The Temple’, a building which now houses ‘The Hive’ as the place to be busy, study, learn and work in reference to the bees’ spirit of hard work and community.

The Temple

The Temple was built in 1819. Very likely  Amon Wilds designed it for Thomas Read Kemp. The Building had originally a square plan with 5 bays on each side, and 2-storeyed with the domed upper storey. It became a boys’ school in 1828; the present first floor on the original building dates from before 1876; the wing to the south-west corner was added, as the inscription records, for the Girls Public Day School Company in 1891.

Only the east and north sides of the building retain the beautiful original ground-floor treatment of 5 arcaded bays with flat-arched windows set back under a round-arched arcade with paired engaged columns which taper downwards and have Egyptian bud capitals of exaggerated form

According to Carder T: The Encyclopaedia of Brighton: Lewes: 1990- The Temple has been built on the exact measurements of Solomon’s Temple and so is called “The Temple”. 

Photograph of the base drawings for the art print. I draw these on A3 sheets of specialised marker paper with calligraphic brushes, fine-line ink pens, sponges, sand paper and other materials. The medium is watercolour, ink and charcoal. I scanned these to form the main line work and patterns in the final print. 

Bumblebees art. The printmaking process

At the peak of last summer I visited Pavilion Gardens with my photographic camera. The historic Hollyhocks were in full bloom and were teeming with bumblebees.

From my photographs I recreate different compositions using collage technique. And once settled upon a design, I proceed drawing in ink the base drawings for the print. I draw element separately: buildings , acanthus and hollyhocks flowers and bumblebees. I draw them with a lithographic mind, creating layers that later on will either form the outlines, or will have its own colour and transparency or will act as a texture to a surface. The next step involves scanning the drawings and carefully adding colour digitally. This is also a long process where I apply painterly techniques: adding the base colour, highlights and shadows.

The final art print is again recreated as a collage. I balance the composition in terms of form, colour, structure, movement. If at the end I feel it touches my soul, I feel the job is done. But maybe it is just me and that I am a sentimental person.

About Bumblebees

This print looks at the relationship that we have with the natural world and in particular the humble bees. Knowing how important bees are for the ecosystems, it is unfortunate how often the news tells us about the decline of these insects. In Brighton and all over Sussex there are numerous organisations that look after many aspects of the conservation of these wonderful creatures.

Brighton and Lewes Beekeepers

Sussex Beekeepers’ Association

‘Bumblebees buzzing upon Hollyhocks and Acanthus at Pavilion Gardens’, A0 edition of the art print framed.

Additional information

Dimensions N/A
Print sizes: standard landscape

Art print A0 size landscape, Art print A1 size landscape, Art print A2 size landscape, Art print A3 size landscape, Art print A4 size landscape


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