I have had a rather lengthy absence from my blog due to heavy work commitments. Firstly end of term marking and hanging of final exhibitions at the art school. After that there was mad last-minute organising to get the students ready for the week-long stay in London to exhibit at New Designers textile graduate show. This was a grueling exercise but a great success for the students so worth it to end the year on a high.
As far as my M.A. work is concerned I have done very little but am now ready with a clear mind to begin again with gusto.
Just before going to London I was so thrilled to receive an invite to The Hart Gallery, Islington as they were just beginning a retrospective of David Blackburn. I have been particularly interested and inspired by this artist since discovering him while researching. I feel such an affinity with his philosophy and relationship to the landscape as well as being fascinated by his pastel technique.
It was so interesting to see the texture created on the surface by the building up of layers at first hand and the intense glowing effect achieved by the rubbing technique. The gallery very kindly gave me a dvd ( Landscapes of the Mind) showing an interview with the artists and footage of him at work. The film was most useful in deepening my understanding of Davids work. This has rekindled my creative juices and I am looking forward to spending the summer engrossed in my practice.
I also had the opportunity to visit Messums Art Gallery on Cork Street where I was introduced to the work of David Tress. I was instantly drawn to his powerful, energetic landscapes . Again it was the surface of the works that I found interesting, building up of layers and starting from a dark ground and rubbing away to remove the paper surface to create highlights.
Here is some film footage of him discussing revisiting the same location again and again and also about the importance of risk taking when working on a painting.