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Women United

An exibition by Sue Dickins

Words & Images: Sue Dickins

Just thought I’d send you a few of my latest paintings that are ready for my second solo exhibition, Women United. The opening evening is Sat 15th April so I'm working hard to be ready in time!

The idea to paint women from around the world wearing traditional dress came to me last year during my first exhibition. I found that I had developed a newfound interest in painting fabric with my models who had modelled for me for my first collection, and as I love figurative work I decided to combine the two.

I already had several friends from different parts of the world who now live here in the UK with us; they have all been extremely supportive and have modelled for me wearing traditional dress where possible. Ines who worked at West Studios for example was my French representative, modelling a wonderful bright red beret. I took photos of her on a bright sunny morning in Westwood. She is such a beautiful person inside and out, I just had to ask her if she would help with my idea, she was delighted! I also have a Polish friend, Marzenna, who modelled a vibrant Polish traditional shawl.

I visited London recently to meet a wonderful lady from the Philippines. She was home for a short time last year and brought back some traditional dresses especially for this project.

During my first exhibition, 'This Woman’s Work', I met a young woman, Alex. We became good friends and I meet up with her quite often in The Hub at Chesterfield. She has been on a incredible journey after being desperately ill and inspires me so much. I asked her if she would like to be part of this and she said yes. We had a lovely morning at Bolsover Castle, what better place than an English Heritage site and a proper English girl! As we entered the Star Chamber, I knew I’d found the perfect location as she gazed through one of the windows; she looked like a princess. The painting that I did of her is being used as my advert. I wanted to give her back some confidence which I’m delighted to say, it did.

I’m hoping this exhibition will again bring people together and hopefully be an exciting experience. All the new works are large, some a meter high, and are very bright and bold.

I read a quote saying 'we all look at the same stars, it’s how we see them that’s different', I’ve kept this thought in mind as I’ve met new friends from all over the world. Yes, we may be from different cultures and have different colour skin, but we are all human and should be treated equally.

I keep popping into see Joby at West Studios as he has also become a good friend and has continually offered his help and support! I’m doing a portrait of him as a Thank you!

Women United

Monday 17 to Friday 28 April 2023

10am to 4pm

West Studios,

Sheffield Road, S41 7LL


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