Near and Far
30 April - 28 May 2022
There are two strands to my work, or perhaps three now, since the two strands have produced a third which combines the other two. Mainly I work from a huge collection of found objects and I’ve built up a large series of paintings, mostly the same size and shape, which work together and separately. I find these objects fascinating and because they are unidentifiable I can make pictures which are basically abstract, about the relationships between the objects, while also exploring the objects themselves. Sometimes too, I feel, they suggest a slightly surrealist narrative. The objects lie on the floor and mirroring the way I move them around there, they are sometimes scrubbed out in the paintings or added as suggestions in charcoal. Putting several of the ‘still lifes’ together creates an extra dimension, like three-dimensional noughts and crosses, as the paintings relate, echo, contrast and work off each other.
Plein-air landscapes make a refreshing opening-out from the narrow focus on small objects. I’ve been painting in Pembrokeshire for many years and been fascinated in turn by the light on mud, wet sand, the cliffs, rocks, and the light on the hills. I painted a series of long thin landscapes that allowed me to concentrate on where the sky met the hilltops. From hills in Pembrokeshire I went in search of different light on differently shaped hills elsewhere – the Brecon Beacons, Cotswolds, Herefordshire, the Peak District, Teesdale and North Yorkshire moors, Cornwall, Wiltshire and Hampshire. But I still return to Pembrokeshire, which combines hills and sea.
From time to time I incorporate some of these landscapes, often vertically, so the landscape element becomes merely a memory, with painted and charcoal drawings of the objects - and my two main strands come together.