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Artist statement

'Do not be afraid to disappear to the dark places and to see what comes to you in the silence'

 

(Paraphrased from Michaela Coel,  Also a title of one of my paintings) 

 

I disappeared into my own silence in lockdown.  I rummaged around in my own head…. a place I wasn’t too familiar with. I was good at keeping busy: opened a few boxes labelled grief and creativity and Mary Kondo-ed them.

 

I describe this experience as a rewilding of myself, just at the natural world around me was rewilding itself. I observed the landscapes around me: overgrown flora & fauna, long grasses, trays of veggie seedlings. I swam in the sea daily and floated on my back taking deep breaths. I observed groups of women swimming at sunrise. I admired their strength and relied on my own network of amazing women and grieved for the ones who had left me.

 

It is this healing power of nature and the restoring property of water which interests me. I explore this along with the feelings of solitude, immersion, peace and joy within my paintings.

 

"I paint from remembered landscapes that I carry with me - and remembered feelings of them, which of course become transformed. I could certainly never mirror nature. I would more like to paint what it leaves with me.”

 

Joan Mitchell

 

This quote from one of my favourite artist ‘ Joan Mitchell’ rings true for me. I too carry my landscapes with me. Once I’ve observed a landscape through painting en plain air in my sketchbook, organic shapes and forms are locked in and added to my visual language. Like this quote I’m not too interested in mirroring nature but rather in the feeling of an environment to create my own imagined landscape.

 

As a Painter,  I work impulsively, starting with bold colour and loose brushstrokes.  Acrylic paint is often applied thickly, sometimes using my fingers to rub it into the canvas, scratching, sanding, using scrapers,  inks, oil pastels and even embroidery to create a desired texture and build up the layers, searching for the balance within the painting.