CHESTER artist Lesley Halliwell is hoping to make an exhibition of herself on television next week.
The spirographer has made it to the top 100 finalists in TV’s hottest art competition, Show Me the Monet, which is back on our screens for a second series next week presented by Chris Hollins (Watchdog, Food Inspectors, Cash in the Attic).
Lesley, a fine art lecturer at the University of Chester, will battle it out to secure a spot in the grand exhibition and sale at the Mall Galleries in London.
Starting on Monday, July 9, for 15 episodes over three weeks, Chris Hollins will follow the progress of the hopeful artists as one after another, they arrive at Eltham Palace – home to the Tudor Court – to present their paintings, sculptures and photography.
To secure her winning place, Lesley will have to face the ‘hanging committee’ of contemporary specialist Charlotte Mullins, art critic David Lee and fine art dealer Roy Bolton who are looking for originality, technical skill and emotional impact. She will need to get the thumbs up from two of the three judges to win her place at the Mall galleries.
If she is successful the art will be sold by ‘blind bid’ and potential buyers will be allowed to bid much higher, or lower, than the reserve price.
This is not the first time that Lesley has had to please TV judges. As a member of the women’s choir A Handbag of Harmonies, she faced a similar tough challenge in 2008 when she and her fellow singers entered the BBC talent show Last Choir Standing. On that occasion, the choir reached the top 15 out of almost 1,000 entries.
Lesley’s spirograph work also featured on Top Gear presenter James May’s BBC2 programme My Sister’s Top Toys in 2007.
Last year Lesley, a member of the Suite studio group in Salford, had a solo exhibition at the Grosvenor Museum in Chester and she has exhibited widely throughout the UK. She was also selected for the prestigious Jerwood Drawing Prize in 2010.
Show Me the Monet is on BBC2 on Monday, July 9, at 3pm.