SUE Wilde rediscovered her love of art following a breakdown. Now, as she approaches a significant birthday, her life journey in art is being celebrated in new exhibition at the city centre’s Trapezium Gallery.

WildeSue@65 is a retrospective exhibition showcasing the Bradford artist’s body of work, marking her 65th birthday and celebrating her love of creativity.

Says Pauline Cooke of Trapezium Gallery: “We held an exhibition for Sue in 2019 and her love of colour and her passion for painting shone throughout her work.

“She has been a valuable member of the team at Trapezium ever since, so we are delighted she is exhibiting again, with a full show of her remarkable paintings and a selection of new work.”

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Sue's self portrait is on display Sue's self portrait is on display (Image: Trapezium Gallery)

Sue has enjoyed her life-long relationship with art. She says: ”Having loved painting and drawing as a child, I rediscovered my love of art and creativity following a mental breakdown in the 1990s.

“Colour, movement, mark-making, energy and abstraction...all gave me a language to express difficult, complex and often tangled feelings.”

Sue has lived and worked in Bradford for the last 45 years. “I am proud to have made Bradford my home,” she says.

“For most of this time I have lived in the inner city, most notably in Manningham and BD3. I have worked in various paid jobs, mainly within social services and the NHS, and have also been a volunteer with a number of community groups, particularly Mind in Bradford, and currently as part of the Trapezium Gallery team.

“It was while participating in the Mind Art Group in the Noughties that I realised how important art is in reducing social isolation and creating community.”

“This led on to me participating in many community and group shows of ‘Outsider Art’ and to curating many of them with Stuart, my husband; the most successful one being the 1in4 Exhibition at Salts Mill, Saltaire, in 2016.

“I have also had a number of solo shows, including two at South Square Gallery in Thornton and the Colour Zone show at Trapezium’s previous gallery space in 2019.”

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Leicester in Lockdown is a vibrant artwork by Sue Wilde Leicester in Lockdown is a vibrant artwork by Sue Wilde (Image: Trapezium Gallery)

As she approaches a big birthday, Sue feels that age is a valuable asset: “It feels important to me, particularly as I become an ‘older woman’ in our society (and turn 65 during the show), to still be visible in the world, to be seen as ‘productive’, and to be proud of my achievements, struggles and successes - this is to be celebrated and not hidden away as part of ‘getting old’!”

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Sue's passion for colour shines through her work Sue's passion for colour shines through her work (Image: Trapezium Gallery)

She continues: “In the lead up to Bradford’s year as UK City of Culture in 2025, we have all got a part to play.

“It is important to draw on the ideas, experience, wisdom and expertise of the older generations as well as to inspire, energise and empower Bradford’s diverse younger generations.”

* Trapezium Gallery celebrating its fifth anniversary last year. Recent exhibitions have included Land/Marks by artist Bill Parker, inspired by daily walks on Haworth moorland.

The exhibition marked a full circle for Bill, whose work was selected to be part of Water, Structure and Life - the very first exhibition at Trapezium, in September 2018.

Since it first opened, the gallery, which is run by volunteers, has produced and hosted more than 40 exhibitions of work by local artists and groups.

“It all started with an impulsive idea to run an art gallery,” says Pauline, one of the founders. “Here we are five years on and still going strong, as enthusiastic and full of ideas as ever.

“We have a great team of people involved in running things and a great audience who visit regularly. We all want to present art in a welcoming, accessible way. We love Bradford and want to see its arts and culture thrive.”

More recently, the gallery held its annual Open Exhibition - Winter Wonder Wall 2023 - bringing together more than 150 artworks by artists and photographers from across the district.

The exhibition showcased more than 50 creatives through a variety of art forms, including drawing, painting, photography, textiles, crafts, 3D and video.

The artwork was selected from creative work submitted over the past year to the Online Gallery at Artists are asked to send photographs of their work then these are uploaded to virtual galleries, available to view all year round.

The Online Gallery and the Open Exhibition have welcomed work from both professional artists and enthusiastic beginners.

More than 2,000 visitors a year make their way to the gallery, which has an exhibition waiting list of over 18 months. The team plans to provide more exhibition space for local artists in the city centre, in the run up to Bradford’s year as UK City of Culture in 2025.

* WildeSue@65 runs at Trapezium Gallery, 58 Kirkgate, Bradford, from Saturday, January 27 to Saturday, February 17. There will be a chance to meet the artist at the exhibition launch on Saturday, January 27, 12noon to 4pm.

Gallery opening times are: Tuesday, Friday and Saturday, 11am-3pm

* For more information go to or email