The colder weather always puts me in a writing, or rather, typing mood.  It keeps my hands warm  in what is a very cold office.  First on my list today is my visit to the Guardian Private View of The Turner Prize.  It was not an emotive experience for me, and while I can enjoy the experiences I experienced last night, I am not stunned, not impressed, not motivated in any strong direction. I don’t like plastic wine glasses at all, but the wine was nice.  I had good company, and it was fun, we laughed a lot.  Shame the rest of the gallery was not open, I would have enjoyed it more.

I do like the painting of Dexter Dalwood, I like what he is doing in it, I like the collage effect, I like the size, but  I find the surface of the painting uninteresting and want the surface to offer me more…the flatness does not appeal to me.  There was some of his painting in the books at the gallery which I thought were better than some on display, and I would have liked to see them up on the wall.  I don’t think all the work on show was his strongest work, but I am sure there are many reasons (that  I am blissfully ignorant of) as to what exactly was selected.  So, in summary, I did enjoy the work of Dexter Dalwood…give me a painting any day, with a bit of a pictorial element, some visual variety, some evidence of imagination, and a nice big size, that can be hung on the wall.  That’s what I go for.

I take a look  from time to time,  at the prints of Ivon Hitchens paintings in my much loved “Ivon Hitchens” by Peter Khoroche, and almost cry. Now, them, even though only delivered to me through printing ink on flat paper, and small in size too, I do find emotive.  If I sound like an incurable romantic, then it may be that this is what I am.  And in the “real” world,  I’m looking…looking at clouds and buildings, pigments in the direct sunlight, the types of pigments used for painting walls, how they change, how they relate, and they are coming closer to me I hope, almost like the air I breathe. I’m not painting right now, but I am forming many images in my mind as I concentrate on seeing and perceiving more of the light and colour and shape and form around me. With all my recent studies on the formal aspects of painting, I still find myself looking to nature, and I think there is a wonder there, that I could easily miss if I spent too much time with my own work.

One thing irked me at the Turner Prize Exhibition, and that, I must confess, did come from a little jealousy, but of a very practical nature.  Simply…How great it would be to be able to paint on a sizable canvas, rather than the small scale substrates I normally use.  All my paintings have to be stored in an already very full house.  We must work with what we have.  At least I experienced no other jealousy about any other aspect of the Turner Prize Exhibition.  Oh, there was the room, the space, of course.  That is a great space.  Room.  Room to fill.  I wish I had that.  Nothing else though.

Ah well,   I had my painting big moment.

NOTE:  Inserted later….you tube video of the mural painted for Trafalgar Junior School in Twickenham…

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A lot of my oil paintings from the most excellent “Landscape and Figure Painting in Oils –  The British Tradition” course by John T Freeman are not finished but there are a few I have finished mulling over, so here is one of them which has undergone the necessary process of being sent through the computer for viewing over the internet.  John T Freeman is one of the most gifted teachers I have had the good privilege to have stumbled upon.  West Dean College and Gardens is  a great place, and I love meeting people dearly, and there are so many people who love artistic expression, it’s all a bit heavenly.  Yes, I am missing it.   It is a privilege to go there too.

Thankfully, next year, though I will not be able to attend the Summer School at West Dean (It is a hefty chunk of cash!) I have £100 off voucher due to the West Dean College “Loyal Lobster Scheme”.  I am saving a bit each month and along with that I will be able to participate in another course next year.  I have wanted to work with lino printing for a couple of years.  My photographic work has over the course of time leant further and further in the direction of blocks of rich colour and I would like to explore this direction using a different printing process to that of photographic reproduction. One that opens up some new possibilities.   And ink… I did try it out this year at the West Dean Summer School in a taster session, and it was POWERFUL stuff! I did not like the smell or the consistency, so maybe that does not bode well, but the COLOUR!  I do feel I want to continue the strands which have emerged from my photographic art, and this is certainly one of them.  I think it’s going to be a useful tool for some interesting work in the future.

One of my experiments carried out at West Dean College, 2010

I am exploring many exciting and interesting ways of manipulating paint and it is opening up lots of expressive opportunities.

 

Take a look at Jenny Meehan’s website jamartlondon  to see some of her more recent work!  http://www.jamartlondon.com/

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