Daughter’s tribute to Welwyn Garden City dad

THE daughter of a former artist and teacher is staging her father’s art exhibition – two months after his death.

Dad-of-three and grandfather-of-two John Akers died at his Oakdale, WGC, home in November following a brain haemorrhage.

He had been working on an exhibition of paintings and drawings, with fellow artist and teacher Gordon Hazelwood, for two years.

Daughter Helen has decided to hold the exhibition, on at The Boxfield Gallery in Stevenage Arts and Leisure Centre now, as a tribute to her dad.

She told the Welwyn Hatfield Times: “It is a very special exhibition.

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“He had been working towards this exhibition for two years or so, but very sadly and unexpectedly he died in late November.

“We decided to go ahead with the exhibition for him, including some of his older work, as a kind of retrospective.

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“It will be a fitting tribute and memorial to him.”

Ms Akers, 46, of Norfolk, added: “He [John] had previously exhibited in galleries in the region and he was a well respected local artist and teacher [previously working at Monk’s Walk School in WGC and Sheredes School in Hoddesdon].

“Indeed there are many homes in WGC with paintings by John Akers proudly hung on the walls.”

Mr Aker’s work features various oil paintings of the Hertfordshire landscape.

Helen said his vibrant paintings convey his “fascination with the colour, light and pattern of the landscape in all seasons, with its characteristic hedgerows, fields and wild flowers”.

Gordon Hazelwood’s work features landscape, seascape and the architecture of seaside towns.

Helen added: “The paintings convey a beautiful sense of light, and his strong drawing focuses on the intricacy of shape to be found in natural and man-made forms.”

The exhibition, in support of Isabel Hospice in WGC, runs until February 14.

It is open whenever Stevenage Arts and Leisure Centre is. Admission is free.

For more information call 01438 242679.

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