ART: Artist, Ally McIntyre
Written by: Sophie Taylor
Get ready to fall in love. It’s time to meet Canadian born, London based painter Ally McIntyre. We caught up over a coffee in Jealous Gallery North, smelling the paint still drying on her canvases and playing with fridge magnets. Ally McIntyre speaks to Narth Fur.
We begin by bonding over our shared hatred of watching back video or listening to audio of ourselves. “I just won’t do it!” Allie laughs. But it’s a serious issue. She’s had a lot of attention since graduating just last year and is often photographed and recorded for her art, recently posing for photos with Arthouse superstar Tracey Emin after winning the Hix Award last year.
This is the second solo exhibition of Ally’s at Jealous, following the huge success of her sell-out ‘Moon Dazed’ show in October 2015. As well as busying herself winning wards, Ally has gained many notable private collectors, and was accepted into the Victoria and Albert Museum Permanent Print Collection.
“I’m not well versed in that side of the art world. I’m not really ready for the media attention I guess. I’m feeling good now. There was a period where I was pretty anxious about everything because I went from school, concentrating on the work, then coming out to this success. And I started to think a lot about that, which took me away from what I was doing.
But then something just clicked recently and I thought, okay I just have to concentrate on being truthful to the work and not too hung up on what happens or doesn’t happen. Because that can be a really weird place for your headspace.”
Where did you study?
“It was at Goldsmiths, in South London. Before that it was at the University of Alberta in Canada.”
How did you find the switch coming from Canada to London?
“It was really wild. Especially because it was so practice driven at U of A and they just let you get on with your own thing.
I went to Goldsmiths to study Masters of Fine Arts Studio, mainly because of their alumni, perhaps for more superficial reasons. But once I got there I realised it was very intense and I was under constant dissection of me as a person and for the work I was making.
So that was a real shock. But I think by my second year, I rebelled against that idea of dissection and being under that critical examination. I’m glad that I had that as the first year was really difficult. Coming to the UK was a real change. It feels like a dream here because of the slight changes in language, driving,”
The same but slightly different, the uncanny.
“It’s like a little wonky yes! I’m still getting used to it here, it’s interesting. I used to think I didn’t have much of a strong identity being Canadian but I realised, oh man, I do! I say ‘ay’ a lot for example.”
What would you say the main differences are, day to day?
“I didn’t think too much about it before I came so it hit me like a ton of bricks because I wasn’t mentally prepared for that little switch. I’m acting like I moved somewhere crazy. We speak English, but there’s these slight little differences that throw you. I had to process it all in a very quick amount of time.”
I hear this is your first time in Crouch Hill?
“It’s amazing to me that the buzz and energy of the city is found everywhere. I know the coffee is really good up north. And this is the original Jealous gallery, Jealous North. It’s really wild, the set up. And out back, the shed, full of prints. Discovering all these places in North London, since studying in South London it’s amazing.”
You won the Jealous Prize didn’t you?
“Yes! Back in 2014 – 2015. It’s in the Victoria and Albert collection now. Jealous were into a painting I did called ‘Moon Cried For Ferdinand’ which was the one they waned to do the edition of. I wasn’t going to show it at first and put it in my final show last minute. Now it’s one of my favourites.”
Because it woooonn the priiiize
“Haha no, not just because of that!”
I particularly like the dogs in your paintings
“I know I can’t stop with the animals! Even for this show I said I’m not going to paint any more damn animals. But I can’t stop. When I was a kid I had a huge obsession with animals and I’d only wear clothes with pictures of animals on them. So I wouldn’t buy anything without animals on them. The obsession has obviously stuck. It’s funny how these things stay with you.”
Would you say your work is intuitive then?
“Yes and there was definitely a lot of tears in my first year at Goldsmiths because it was such a different way of approaching work. But then the work became really tight. So over the Summer I had to abandon that and focus on just making the work. Which is what the tutors were planning on all along, to poke you until you find your own way.”
And to the more important stuff, what are you doing for Christmas?
“I’m going to go back home and mooch off my parents. Rent free living for two months, yess. Because I’m so deprived of the snow here I might embrace it more when I go back, go do the skating and the tobogganing thing. But when I was living in Canada I never did those things, probably because you’re just so used to it.”
But what about the trees?
“Oh yes! We’ve got all the Evergreens, that’s cool, I like those. Again, I never used to. What about you? What are your traditions?”
We continue to chat about our weird and wonderful traditions and the crossovers between Canadian and British culture. Ally McIntyre’s solo show, ‘Dog Days’ is up at Jealous North until 27th November. Don’t Miss It. You won’t know how sparkly that glitter paint is until you see it in the dazzling flesh.
Photos by Mike Barry
When danger reared its ugly head, Brave Sir Robin turned and fled… to his namesake pub on Crouch Hill for a craft beer and a top-notch meal from kitchen residency Cue Point. Warm globes of light hang above intimate booths, specially commissioned wall design offers a rich backdrop, and cosy sofas, deep armchairs and plentiful cushioned stools ensure no one is without a seat.
Flocking to Holloway Road on one of the many Sundays that we’ve spent at the Nag’s Head Car Boot Sale, we spotted a new Vietnamese place called Pho Hot getting ready to open up their doors. Being the nosy folks we are, we peeked inside and spotted a menu. Banh Mi was on it. It's a baguette, but not as you know it. Glory of all glories! It’s been far too long since I last consumed this distinctive sarnie and I'm happy as Larry that there's a new Banh Mi joint on my doorstep.
Baby, it’s getting cold outside, and what better way to aide our frostbitten noses than a chat to a professional skin person? We’re talking to Lee Garrett, founder of The Garrett Clinic, accomplished skincare specialist and heralded by many as the UK’s leading Skin Guru. Read on to find out his insider tips for surviving this winter season with your skin looking as radiant as the moon that breaks a stormy night.
Joined by over 50 other artists incorporating printmaking, painting, digital art, photography and small-scale sculpture, Tomorrow’s World presents us with utopias, dystopias, predictions, prophecies and visions of the future. We hit up the private view last Friday and it was pretty damn bleak, in the best sense of the word.
Carouse founders Chris, Theo and Ben – the charming folk behind Kentish Town’s Rose and Crown – have a new venture afoot and we couldn’t be more bloody excited to see it. We’ve been creeping in their windows, peering through the paint and sneaking glimpses at builders’ bums for a few months now (okay, maybe not the last one), watching these guys transform this cosy corner of Crouch Hill into a rather cool little boozer. Now they’re opening and everyone is invited. Come one, come all, and try all 20 of their beers on tap with us.
Last month I decided to try clubbing again. I don’t quite know what came over me, but I actually (brace yourselves) enjoyed it. I went to Body Hammer’s monthly party in Manor House and I’m here to tell you to go too, whether you love clubbing, hate clubbing, or really couldn’t care either way. #notspon
Rich, fried, buttery, potato-y vessels loaded with flavor combinations that go down rather well with craft beer, late nights and good times. Ha, who am I kidding, EVERYTHING goes down well with beer. You heard that right buddy, loaded potato skins are back with a bang (and a generous portion of bacon) and are currently being served at Old Street's The Magic Roundabout by street food pop-up Skins and we could not be any happier. Well, unless they were to stuff it with, say, Mac and Cheese or risotto. Oh, that's exactly what they do? Well paint me green and call me a cucumber.
Magical gifts, wonderful gifts, marvellous gifts, beautiful gifts, gifts, glorious gifts glo-ri-ous giiiiiifts. Please Sir, I want some more. It’s that time of year again and whether you love it or loathe it gifts will be purchased and presented into expectant hands. Stroud Green's very own Pretty Shiny Shop have compiled a gift guide to help ease the shopping shock. Imagine only having to trot to your local gift shop and tick off your entire shopping list in one fell swoop. Done, finito, terminado! To make it that little sweeter, it's also all very affordable... so you won't even have to pick a pocket or two.
Alright guys, it’s happening. The frosty charm of December is, once again, being beaten to a pulp by the capitalists’ wet dream: Christmas. The hideous twinkling of artificial outdoor lighting is starting to appear, with tourists flocking from far and wide to watch D-list celebrities press a button. Invitations to Christmas parties flood in from your multiple part-time jobs, ensuring you make bad decisions bi-weekly til next year. Supermarkets are selling 12-day advent calendars containing confetti, cookie cutters and candles for a flawless £50. And oh, how the mulled wine flows.
Who doesn’t love a cheeky statistic, correctly sourced? You know we do. Well, did you know that for every £1 spent with a small business, 63p is re-spent in the local area, as opposed to a measly 40p in every £1 re-spent locally with larger businesses? An absolute travesty, am I right? That 23p has to mean something, right, guys?! Guys? Guys, where are you going? Wait, there’s freebies involved too!
By gum there are a lot of winter markets this year. Fueled by sickly sweet mulled wine and overpriced pulled pork sliders, we’ve managed to wade our way through the murky waters of winter markets and find some decent looking ones round this here part of town. Don’t let our Grinch-esq vibes put you off (I’m more of a Pancake Day person myself) because, if you’re into markets, you’ll probably like these. Read on, if you’re merrier than us.
Take a short walk along Finsbury Park’s own sunset strip and you’ll find MoseyHome, an interiors retailer and styling consultancy who have invited us to collaborate with them on an exciting new series titled 'Style My Shop', in which they invite some of London's most talented interiors experts to quite literally style their shop. Interiors porn at it's finest.
Why was the snowman sad? Because he had a meltdown. Much like us, every year, when winter comes. It’s cold, it’s dark, and we know Christmas is on its way. But hey, it’s not all bad – the events round this time of year can be pretty swell. So don your scarf-shawl-blanket and get your frolic on, it’s time for fairy lights, scarfing mulled wine and stuffing your face!
Touch, taste, smell, hear and create art. Smith & Sinclair, purveyors of the Edible Cocktail, presents The Flavour Gallery: a multi-sensory adventure that’ll seduce your senses and tickle your taste buds beyond all imagination. Ooh matron!