Artist statement

ARTIST STATEMENT



I make 2-dimensional work with lines. The images I make are of cities, I draw and re-draw cities. Recently I have been slowing down the speed I make the lines. The images I end up with are stiller. I am interested in seeing the patterns humans make on the planet from different distances. I change the scale of buildings. I am interested in how far these patterns reach in time and space. Do human structures have any effect on nature, on animals, the weather and climate. Does the human pattern of building have any impact on the past or the future?
Composition for me is a mathematical presence in the arrangement of the lines. The speed and tension in the lines picks up on music, sounds and vibrations. I also jot down words and graffiti from the urban experience. In my work the cities are often upside down, the smallest buildings at the bottom under pressure. The lines are made with stitching, ink, scratching through oil paint I do this is to create as much contrast as possible and to extend the essentially traditional practice of painting. The cities have started forming centralised shapes, crosses and columns, or icons. They are not attached to the rectangular edge any more.


Hamburg series

August 2019

I am currently creating 2-D compositions with white lines. The white lines are on the surface of older paintings. The lines in white form a unity, they work together this cuts them off from the earlier painting below. By working over the paintings underneath they sink and darken under layers of pigment and black ink.

The original paintings are sometimes reduced to just their texture, a patchwork, or collage. In the past I glued pieces of cut up oil paintings, travel tickets, photos into watercolours. I combined the traditional media; watercolour and oil paint. These complex works now form the background of my current compositions. The re-working is in water-based media, to which I add dry media, chalk and pigments, the paper I use is 76 x 56 cm. If there is no tension or purpose in the white lines or they don't hold together I erase them and re-paint them.

The lines are formed of dashes with a rhythm in them. I often need time to have enough distance to see the true nature of the painting. All of the motifs in my work come from distant views of cities. I turn the cities upside down to give them a suspended look also to make them abstract. The paper is also suspended vertically.

The current work is all based on images of Hamburg, a city I visited recently and viewed from church spires that survived the 2nd World War. In a piece of music; Hubeau's trumpet sonata, composed in Paris in 1942, the piano sounds as if it is accompanying something completely different to the solo it is written to accompany. This fascinated me and I wanted to see if it were possible to get two layers to turn away from each other, and face in opposite directions in a painting.