Ethel’s Reverb exhibition launch

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One of the artist's films featuring Nanette Newman, Victor Spinetti and Paolo Negri

Reverb is an unusual multi-media exhibition based around the works of the Sussex-based animator and multi-talented creative Chris Ketchell, whose work will be exhibited at Ethel Loves Me in the High Street, from April 12 to April 28.

Ketchell’s uniquely distinctive animated films will be available to enjoy against a backdrop of fine art prints and sculpture inspired by or drawn from the animations.

Reverb as an effect is a reflection of the world around us. It can fill in the space between two notes, just like the magic that happens in-between two static frames of animation to create movement. It creates a richness and vibrancy that fills the room in the same way that we can use rich saturated colour and vibrant imagery to tell a story. Details of three films to be shown are given below followed by a potted history of the artist.

Cosa Raccomanda Lei?
It’s 1962, and in search of a slice of La Dolce Vita, a middle-aged British man flies to Rome. Full of optimism, but having learned just a single Italian phrase, his plans to live the high life soon become unstuck.

The artist explains some of his work:
“Inspired by a trip to Milan with my wife, I designed, animated and directed this stop motion short film for the Channel 4 Animator in Residence Scheme. The dialogue features the incredible voice talent of the late great Victor Spinetti. There is also a cameo voiceover from Nanette Newman and a fantastic soundtrack from Italy’s finest; Paolo Negri and The Link Quartet.”

Peter Popgun.
Every young boy wants a popgun, and when Peter gets one for Christmas he heads excitedly into the woods to have some fun.

“I was invited to make this short at Aardman Animation after graduating from the RCA. Growing up as a boy in Preston during the 1950’s, my dad headed into woodland and shot a small bird. The story is biographical and based on a true story of regret. I wanted to try and capture the feeling of elation… followed by the overriding sense of remorse”.

Vince Vox.
Vince Vox is never bored. He might not have much money, he might have lost most of his hair, find himself the wrong side of 40 and been in better shape, but he occupies his time and his mind with creative exercises.

“Based largely upon an unhealthy obsession with the electric organ, Vince is usually buried deep in some sort of creative pastime from a time when we were all a bit younger. He doesn’t need screen time weekly report notifications on his iPhone, tablet or device… because they would always clock in at zero”.

Chris Ketchell was born in the Yorkshire Dales in 1975. He showed an aptitude for drawing, painting and making things from a very young age and developed a curiosity for how he could make these images and objects come alive.

Following an Illustration degree at Manchester and an MA in Animation at The Royal College of Art, Ketchell embarked on a highly successful career in the animation industry. From humble beginnings as an in-house animator on Bob the Builder to directing animated TV campaigns, Ketchell has worked with major advertising agencies to create work for clients such as BP, British Gas, Godiva, Paddy Power and Zurich Connect. He continues to work and challenge himself in this field today.

Alongside his commercial output, Ketchell has developed a body of personal work with an emphasis on a more craft-based approach. Often influenced by his own animated films, he draws inspiration from the music, films and television of the 1960s. He uses vibrant colours and strong geometric shapes to forge a distinct and unique visual style.

Attention to detail and a total obsession with the quality of finish are key to his makeup as an artist. His collection of work was once described in an interview as having “real Northern bollocks”, perhaps still to this day the highest compliment he can ever recall. Naturally he’s very proud of his heritage, roots and inherited obsession with Preston North End FC… but he is equally content drawing, designing and making things in his studio deep in the East Sussex countryside.

The exhibition runs from Friday, April 12 to Sunday, April 28. Ethel Loves Me is located at 105 High Street, TN31 7JE and is open from 10:30am to 5:30pm Monday to Saturday and from 10:30am to 5:00pm on Sunday. For further details contact Matt@ethelloves.me.

Image Credits: Ethel Loves Me.

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