2019/06/03

Philippa Plato

Philippa Plato
philippabealeart@gmail.com
www.philippabeale.com

  
I was born and raised in the countryside near Winchester. After the second world war my parents bought land full of trees. I grew up climbing them, collecting conkers, and beech nuts, being paid to pull up Sycamore seedlings and sitting by log fires in the winter. Each day as a very small child, I stepped out under a canopy of trees and walked to school through lanes with hedgerows dotted with trees. In summer I played in places with names such as ‘ghosty wood’ and ‘bluebell copse’ and gazed up to see the sun filtered through the branches. I used it as a clock, watching as it slipped sideways through the woods to check the hour until ‘tea time’. To see bright green and azure together still sends a thrill of anticipation through me. In winter, when the snow lay neatly upon even the tiniest branches, I remember the stillness that fell over the landscape broken periodically by children let out to play, crying out loud and laughing as they tracked each other and the foot prints of animals through the woods.

Philippa Plato
Arrival, oil on canvas, 175 x 90 cm

I am well known as a conceptual artist and for years, my work was concerned with gender politics and the effects of advertising upon our everyday lives In 2005, I rediscovered trees and relish the continual visual interest they provide and in the twenty-first Century, trees are not without their political side as we become more aware of the need for sustainability and realise more keenly their scientific importance to us. We must also remember that the forests we love are managed for profit. 
During WWII, woods and forests symbolised mankind's propensities for good and evil, places in which people could hide but also places of execution and torture. My painting “In the Hunting Wood“, is a reminder of resistance fighters, the French ‘Malgré Tous’, the Poles and the Jews, who were forcibly marched through forests to their deaths. 

Philippa Plato
A Walk in the Snow
As a child I spun round and round looking up into the trees. As an artist, I sit very still and record them in small pen and ink drawings about 15 x 9 cm. To discover new ways of painting trees is the agenda for many of the painters in the Arborealist Group and I am always striving to create a new painting language, a new form of mark making. For me it is utterly pointless to copy what has gone before. Small dawings completed in situ are scanned, enlarged and then printed onto canvas, sometimes monochrome,other times as a brightly coloured grisaille. This is then squared, enabling me to paint layers of marks copied from the original ink drawing. Sometimes I allow parts of the grisaille to show through.giving the painting its luminosity. This is a contemporary but similar version of methods which have been in use for centuries; preparing a fresco by painting red oxide onto wet plaster is one example. From ancient times, grisaille has been used by artists to prepare a ground - it could be a clay wash, charcoal or ink depending on the period and the surface which is to be painted. We have come to love the muted tones of Constable and Turner, but see a Constable that has been kept out of the light in mint condition and you will see colours as bright as mine. 




Je suis née et j’ai été élevée à la campagne près de winchester. Après la seconde guerre mondiale mes parents ont acheté une propriété avec de nombreux arbres.  Dans mon enfance, je grimpais aux arbres, je ramassais les marrons, les faines du hêtre, on me payait pour ramasser les graines de sycomore et l’hiver je m’asseyais sur les bûches de pins. J’ai fait mes premiers pas sous la voûte des arbres, pour aller à l’école je suivais des sentiers bordés de haies et d’arbres. En été, je jouais dans des lieux appelés « le bois hanté » ou « le squelette des jacinthes »et je levais la tête pour voir les rayons du soleil filtrer entre les branches. Il me servait de montre alors que j’observais sa lumière baisser entre les troncs jusqu'à la fin de l’après-midi. Je ressens toujours un frisson de joie par anticipation devant le vert vif et le bleu azur mêlés .En hiver, quand la neige recouvre les plus petites branches, je me souviens du silence enveloppant le paysage de temps à autre déchiré par les cris des enfants qui riaient et jouaient à se poursuivre, je revois les empreintes des animaux dans les bois.

Philippa Beale
Lake at vaux, 2013, acrylic on canvas, 40 x 30 cm
Je suis particulièrement connue comme une artiste conceptuelle et pendant des années, mon œuvre traitait de la politique des genres et des effets de la publicité sur notre vie quotidienne. En 2005, j’ai redécouvert les arbres et le bonheur sans faille de les regarder. Au 21eme siècle, les arbres ne sont pas sans intérêt politique et nous prenons de plus en plus conscience de la nécessité de les préserver et leur importance scientifique nous apparaît plus clairement. Nous ne devons pas oublier que les forêts que nous aimons sont gérées en fonction d’intérêts économiques.
Pendant la 2ème Guerre mondiale, les bois et les forêts ont été les témoins de l’attirance humaine pour le bien et le mal, ainsi c’est là  où les hommes pouvaient se cacher mais aussi c’est là où avaient lieu les tortures et les exécutions. Mon tableau « In the Hunting Wood » est en souvenir des combattants Français, Polonais, et Juifs qui, de force ont traversé les forêts jusqu’à la mort.

Philippa Beale
Lovely trees
Enfant, je tournais sur moi-même la tête en l’air en fixant la cime des arbres. Artiste, je reste assise et les immortalise par des petits dessins de 15x9cm à l’encre et à la plume. Découvrir de nouvelles façons de peindre les arbres est d’actualité pour de nombreux peintres du groupe des Arboréalistes et je m’efforce toujours de créer un nouveau langage pictural, une nouvelle façon de laisser une marque. Pour moi il est complètement inutile de copier ce qui a déjà été fait. Des petits dessins réalisés dans la nature sont scannés, agrandis, puis imprimés sur la toile, quelquefois monochrome, quelquefois en grisaille. Ils sont ensuite cadrés, me permettant de peindre par couches selon le dessin original à l’encre. Parfois, je laisse transparaître la grisaille pour donner au tableau sa luminosité. Ceci est une forme contemporaine de techniques utilisées depuis des siècles ; pour préparer une fresque on peignait le plâtre humide à l’oxyde rouge par exemple. Depuis les temps les plus reculés, les artistes ont utilisé la grisaille pour préparer les fonds, ce pouvait être l’argile diluée, le charbon ou l’encre selon la période ou la surface à peindre. Nous sommes arrivés à aimer les teintes sourdes de Constable et Turner, mais observez un Constable qui aurait été conservé à l’abri de la lumière et serait dans son état d’origine, et vous verrez des couleurs aussi vives que les miennes
Je suis venu vivre en France quand j'ai fait le Chemin de Croix pour l'église de la Vierge, qui est dans le village de Vaux dans la Vienne. Je suis resté à cause de la campagne et mon désir de peindre les arbres que j'ai vu partout. Il y a différents groupes et types de plantations, chacun pour moi, avec leur impératif visuel spécial. Les plats à travers la route, les saules pleureurs au fond de mon jardin , Les chênes sessiles du bois de chasse, l'arbre de Lyme par le Maire, le tilleul dans mon jardin d'amis.

Philippa Beale
Contrasts, 2015, ink and arylic on canvas, 120 x 280 cm 

J'aime les arbres indigènes, à feuilles caduques, ces importations attrayantes du Japon et de la Chine doivent rester dans le jardin. J'aime les forêts et les bosquets où l'imagination peut courir l'émeute; Où des drames ont eu lieu, des héros ont été abattus, le rendez-vous des amants et des forestiers plus mondains ont travaillé dur pour garder les arbres vivants.

Je commence par faire de petits dessins à la plume et à l'encre puis les agrandir dans des peintures souvent en noir et blanc. Quand j'utilise la couleur, je recherche vraiment la vérité, car le ciel est rarement bleu et les feuilles sont rarement vertes; Je n'utilise pas de palette attendue d'un artistes des paysage.

2019/06/02

Sarah Gillespie

Sarah Gillespie
studio@sarahgillespie.co.uk
www.sarahgillespie.co.uk


Everything begins with stepping outside.  

Sarah Gillespie
Absence, mezzotint engraving, 16” x 16”

The whole work is how to step over one’s threshold, outside of one’s self, and make enough space to allow existence – specifically the existence of the more than human world - to presence itself.   All my work is of very familiar places here in Devon, so walking, drawing, memory and long, careful observation play a crucial role.  

Sarah Gillespie
Sun speaks to Sap, silverpointl, 27” x 40”

The natural world once you start to really see it can be overwhelming and one has to be calm and make selections, be still and see what is in front of you.   One is looking, always looking for how much one can see and then leave out in order for the drawing to find its poetic resonance. The whole becomes – much as trees already are - a mystic dance between the interior life and exterior weather, the turning of the spheres and the turning of memory.

Sarah Gillespie
Grace and Ash, charcoal 40” x 40”

I relish difficult, or even obsolete methods and materials.  The difficulty is important - there is something to be said for a lack of choices, or the deliberate limiting of choices. Something interesting is always revealed in renunciation. For me when I gave up colour, elements usually hidden, or more accurately passed-over in the landscape became present to me in the secrets and details of the woods and water, moths, hares and birds.  I simply saw more if I wasn’t busy mixing colours.  

Sarah Gillespie
Deep Lane, charcoal, 27” x 40”

Without wishing to self-agrandise, I would like to be, in some small way, an advocate for the more-than-human world, for the complex beauty of trees, for what little is left of what is natural and wild on these islands. I believe, to misquote Yeats, that we ache to press our hearts against what remains of loveliness and I am absolutely not interested in self expression.


Sarah Gillespie
What Remains, silverpoint, 36” x 36”

2019/06/01

Nahem Shoa

Nahem Shoa
nahem.shoa@aol.co.uk
www.nahemshoa.co.uk


Nahem Shoa
 New From Nowhere, 2019, acrylic on canvas, 122 x 304 cm

For over 30 years I have loved drawing and painting all types of trees, their gnarled twisted form, strange branches, growths and usual bark has captivated me. Whether I draw or paint in front of them, or there forms linger in my imagination, trees for me are the inspiration that unlocks my emotions and feelings in my art. They are incredibly hard to draw and demand your total concentration and powers of perception to paint and draw well and its only now at nearly 50 that I feel about to draw and paint their portraits. I have always been a good listener and have an ability to convey in paint true feelings because the more I observe things, the more open and un judgmental my vision becomes, which lets me see freshly and allows my subjects speak their own truths. 

Nahem Shoa
Large oak tree in Holland Park, London, 2018, pencil on paper, 29.7 x 42 cm

In the beginning to 2018 after two years painting 3 metres paintings on the theme of Paradise and Paradise Lost for a group show( IntoThe Wild Abyss) at The Royal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery in June 2017. I spent the first two months painting a new 3.6 metre long forest painting (Other Worlds) it was partly based on a few tree drawings, memory of forests and my imagination and the final painting turned out to be in terms of my own work a breakthrough, a new kind of painting for me.

Nahem Shoa
Scots Head Domenica, Antoine seated, 1999

This has inspired me to do a series of forest paintings so For the last 4 months I have spent hours making drawings of trees in city parks and heaths, and for me I see them as forests of the city. Over this time I found a way of drawing solely by mark making that seems for my own art to be a bridge between observation and the imagination. The Forest is a fragile thing, whilst I was drawing trees, millions of acres of forests around the world were being destroyed by huge forest fires.

Nahem Shoa
Giant London Plane Tree, 2008, oil on canvas, 122 x 154 cm

In the daytime the forest feels sweet and welcoming, but at night they are scary places to enter, every fable,poem, story, film and novels you have seen and read makes us all terrified to enter the dark forest because we know all the dark creatures of the night, ghosts and spirits start to wake up.( A perfect metaphor the the artists studio) There is a time in-between day and night, sometimes called the blue hour, which is mysterious, hauntingly beautiful and I want to turn my artist fingers into magic wands to convey this. Just like the 14th century poet Dante, I want the viewer to be able to enter the underworld, see all of the terrible things of our modern world and then make their way back to the light with their heart filled with love.



Nahem Shoa
Plane tree in Kensington Gardens, London, 2018, pencil on paper, 29.7 x 42 cm

Our relationship to nature is reaching a critical point and our hyper capitalist model is destroying the planet for profit. We have to find a different path in the forest to take us to the light.

Nahem Shoa
Other Worlds, 2018, acrylic on linen, 70 x 366 cm