Tag Archives: New York

Chalk Nude [parental guidance]

25 May

I spend a lot of time doing life drawing and studying anatomy because my practice is figurative and representational, although I take some liberties: I like Egon Schiele, Toulouse-Lautrec, van Gogh and the German Expressionists so taking liberties comes naturally. But now and again I take a BIG liberty and head towards the abstract. It happened during this particular drawing session. The model, the pose, the brown paper sketchpad I bought in New York, the set of conte crayons; all were in the right place at the right time to scribble this little abstract nude. It reminds me of petroglyphs I saw high up in the Karakoram Mountains when I visited Pakistan. They’re over 10,000 years old, picked out of the rocks with primitive tools, but they contain the essence of humans and animals, despite their abstraction. I’ve tried to work in this style since, but it’s very hard. people often look at abstracted art and say, “a child of six could do it” – they have no idea how difficult it can be.

A Bit Like New York?

17 Mar

Yesterday was the official opening of the new Elysium Artists’ Studios on Mansel Street. We’ve all been working on the building for the past couple of weeks to get it ready for the public and I did my best to tidy up my own studio and get work up onto the walls. It was good to spend some time going through my work and decide what to put out and also to rediscover pieces I’d forgotten about.

Here’s the view through my North-facing window after I’d tidied up. The old plans chest is one of the most invaluable pieces of furniture I’ve ever owned. During the opening, I used it for serving mocktails and home-made cake, assisted by my poor long-suffering husband.

Here’s the view from the window end, facing the door with some of my work displayed in the corridor outside. Later on that evening the place was jam-packed. I don’t think I’ve ever been anywhere so crowded. It was brilliant. Someone said it was more like New York! I don’t know about that, but I haven’t been to anything quite like it in Swansea before.

Here’s some of the work I displayed; on the left a series of blockprint portraits done from my travels in Pakistan a few years back, along with some linoprints of petroglyphs carved into the rocks of the Karakoram mountains. On the back wall, two more recent full-colour monotypes. It was a terrific night but so busy that I didn’t have enough time to speak to everyone, so if you’re one of the people who came along, thank you ever so much and I’m sorry I couldn’t spend more time with you 🙂

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