Jim Moir brings Hot Buttered Mattress exhibition to Newcastle

Jim Moir in front of his artwork

Jim Moir – aka Vic Reeves – has been painting in and out his whole life

Artist Jim Moir – known as award-winning presenter and comedian Vic Reeves – has opened a new exhibition.

Moir, who grew up in Darlington, exhibits a collection of drawings and paintings at the Biscuit Factory in Newcastle.

Titled Hot Buttered Mattress, the show features a number of ornithological works and Moir’s Bird Color Wheel.

“Birds are what I love,” she said.

“I always think paint what you know and what you love, and it will come out better.”

Color wheel of birds

The bird color wheel needed the first math Moir has used since school, she said

As Vic Reeves, Moir worked with Bob Mortimer on shows such as Shooting Stars and Vic Reeves’ Big Night Out.

The artist has also published books on his art and had exhibitions at venues including the Saatchi Gallery and the Whitechapel Gallery in London.

His new Sky Arts show, Painting Birds with Jim and Nancy Moir, will air later this year.

Mandarin Duck By Jim Moir

Some pieces, like Mandarin Duck, are more abstract

Moir said the title of the exhibit was “the first thing that came to mind”.

“Don’t ask me what that means because I don’t know,” she laughed.

His lifelong love of looking at and drawing birds, but now he is able to paint them more often.

“When I was a kid, and grew up not too far from here in Darlington, that’s what I did when I wasn’t in school: I went bird watching and drew birds,” he said.

“Now that I’m 64 I’m painting birds again with a vengeance.

“I get up around 06:00 in the morning and walk into my study, full of beans.

“I go to bed excited about what I’m going to paint the next day and I get up in the morning and I’m energized and I keep going.”

Calculating the dimensions of the triangle and circle for the quadrants of her color wheels was “the only time I’ve ever used math in my life,” she added, laughing again.

Curlews on Lindisfarne

The weather on Lindisfarne was too inclement for more curlews to be painted

Moir said he tried to give the show “a northeastern flavor” and wanted to paint more on Holy Island “but the weather was bad”.

For the Lindisfarne Curlew has “just sprayed a lot of ink”, he added.

“When you paint paintings like this, sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn’t, and this one worked.”

Redwings munching berries by Jim Moir

Moir’s new show on Sky Arts with his wife Nancy will begin later in the year

Moir’s previous show at the Biscuit Factory, Mountain of Turkish Delight, sold out.

General manager Rachel Brown said the gallery was “delighted” to welcome him back.

“It’s a privilege to be the only space in the Northeast exhibiting Jim’s work. To see different elements of his practice unfold over the years we’ve worked with him is a joy,” she said.

The sales show runs until 2 April.

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