Spotlight On: Sam Heath

29th April 2021 / Museum, Museum blog

Our Spotlight On blogs and vlogs introduce thirteen of the artists featured in exhibition ‘Spotlight On: Modern and Contemporary Art from the Collection of Chippenham Museum’.  The second in a series, the exhibition presents 40 works acquired in the last five years to ensure our collection better represents North Wiltshire’s creativity, with the majority of works donated by the artists.

Please introduce yourself: What is your name, where are you based, what medium/style do you work in?

My name is Sam Heath and I’m based in Bath. I make drawings, paintings and prints of the same familiar subjects: friends and family, fields near where I live, my local pub.

Why did you want to be involved with this project?

Although I’m now based in Bath, I grew up in Chippenham. On briefly moving back home after university, I began a series of works – depicting the brilliant Three Crowns pub – that became an important project for me for several years. I’ll be showing this body of work (amongst others) at my first solo exhibition at Chippenham Museum later this year. It feels right that some of these works go to the Museum and it’s great to be able to say I’ve got work in a public collection.

How did you decide which piece to donate to the museum and can you tell us more about it?

A few years ago, I began drawing my friends whilst at The Three Crowns (my local pub at the time). Over the next few years, the pub and its community became an important subject in my work, even becoming the theme of my MA project at Camberwell College of Arts. I’ve donated two pieces from this body of work – both depicting everyday scenes in the pub – to the Museum. One of the prints is a portrait of my friend Sophie. I went to school with her in Chippenham and she finds it funny that she’s become part of the collection.

Becky at The Three Crowns, monotype and collage, 2018

Why do you think having public access to local art is so important, such as through this new collection being created at Chippenham Museum?

The pandemic has led many to appreciate their need for art and creativity – being unable to visit museums and galleries for most of the past year has been rubbish. With things opening up again soon, it’s going to be more important than ever that people are able to easily access and engage with interesting and inspiring local collections.

Why do you think North Wiltshire has such a creative culture?

I think the main reason that North Wiltshire has such a creative culture is because of the legacy of the incredible artists who studied and taught at Corsham Court in the 50s. In recent years, it’s been brilliant to see local museums work with organisations such as Creative Wiltshire to celebrate and grow these collections – long may this continue. I’m delighted to be part of this recent project and have my works join Chippenham Museum’s collection.

‘Spotlight On: Modern and Contemporary Art from the Collection of Chippenham Museum’ is free to visit 17 May – 19 June. Open Monday – Saturday with two ways to visit:  drop in 10am – 1pm or book a free Private View for up to six people or two households at 1pm, 2pm or 3pm. 


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> Exhibition Catalogue (£5) available in the museum shop and online