16 July 2017

Late in 2008 after my traumatic brain injury in Melbourne, I started going to the Royal Talbot Rehabilitation Centre which covered all aspects of my recovery. What sticks in my mind the strongest is doing art therapy with Sandra Hatton and Amanda Hansen in their studio. They started a Newsletter recently and asked whether I'd write a bit about myself and my experience with them. - so I feature in this month's edition of the bulletin...



26 June 2017

This work passed the "first selection" for The Royal Scottish Academy of Art and Architecture - RSA Open Exhibition of Art 2017. It now will be taken to the Academy in Edinburgh for the final decision and if selected then it'll be on display in the capital until October 2017. But will it be there's the question?



Father / Daughter, 2012, 0.65m x 0.5m

25 March 2017

New year so time for a change! I'm taking part in my first exhibition in London...

Portraits, 4 - 17 April 2017
The Brick Lane Gallery, 93 - 95 Sclater Street, Shoreditch, London

thebricklanegallery.com

If anyone happen to be passing through the city feel free to take a look!

11 June 2016

The latest edition of the magazine ARTisSpectrum has just come out and I'm lucky to have a review of my work posted in it along with my latest work Donovan.Oh and there are some really interesting articles and other reviews in the edition too so feel free to click on this link and flick through the pages!

http://artisspectrum.com/magazine/35/#50

14 February 2016

I've always wondered whether the music I'm listening to or even the books I'm reading influences what I'm painting at the time? I can look at finished works and know exactly which albums I was listening to at the time. I put the music on, sit down at my easel and lose myself - surely there's an influence there?

Here's a good example. I was paintining, listening to and reading this all at the same time. Now if you can see what the subject of my painting is doing and know anything about what the Chillis sing about, there has to be a link no? But I can't remember whether the music and book influenced the painting or vica versa...

24 January 2016

I just found out that a Japanese tourist travel information show BS-TBS made a film about New York City and visited the Agora Gallery to recommend it to visitors when they’re passing through the city. Now I don’t know what’s being said here as the only Japanese I know of is “hello”! But I’m complimented that some of my work from an exhibition going on there made an appearance.  The Director of the Gallery Angela Di Bello also speaks a little about my Gallery.

13 July 2015

I found out that Dominique Carton died very recently and was shocked to the core. I first met him at the Glasgow Art Meet Up group that I’d started with Rachel Dill. In 2013 he asked if I would be involved in an “artist at work” project. I agreed and I was nervous about it. When he visited he completely put me as ease and the resulting photos, as you can see, were really impressive.

We then met to discuss the shots and he showed me his beautiful MacBook with the amazing software for manipulating his work. We also talked about brain injury which we'd both suffered from. He was still recovering from a stroke he'd recently had. We discussed the problems of being injured in a way that nobody can see from the outside, an issue I think most brain injured people struggle with.

He died before his time; he was a charming, charismatic man. I feel very lucky to have worked with him.

17 June 2015

We've just moved house this year and I found a big box of photos that Paul and I have accumulated since we met in 1993. Amongst them I found a few shots that stopped me in my tracks. I started working on a large canvas in 2005, a nude portrait, that I worked on every night after work for eighteen months. When I finally finished it, we immediately boarded a plane and went to live in Melbourne for two years. It's always been a work I've been really happy with, which being so self critical is a big thing for me to say!

When I saw these photos I realised that Paul had taken shots of me working on this canvas. I used to paint in the hall of the one bedroomed flat we were renovating at the time. As you can see the place was in the middle of being done up...

3 April 2015

When I was at the Opening Night for Melange of Milieu in New York, I got speaking to PR Assistant Nikki Fraser at the Agora Gallery. We had a really interesting chat about art, psychology and the way people work. She asked me if I would be interviewed for the Gallery blog and I gladly accepted. Anyone who knows me knows how nervous I was about it and I spent quite a while preparing. But as people close to me predicted, as soon as I picked up the phone my nerves disappeared. I did it the only way I knew how - honestly - and the resultant blog that came from it, I feel, puts my answers across really well.

Here it is:

    
  

30 March 2015

As I usually do before travelling, I checked out shows and exhibitions that were happening in New York, Washington DC and Philadelphia the time I was there. Amongst others there was one that caught my eye, which was Screaming Babies by artist Linda Lowery, Gallery Underground, Washington DC http://www.galleryunderground.org/events/. My husband and I found the gallery and spent a good long time looking at the works in the show. They're beautiful and show the initial emotions of new born children just after birth.

I was so taken with them I bought one from the exhibition, "Anguish". I didn't consider how I'd actually get the canvas home on the plane though, until I got to Philadelphia and realised it wouldn't fit in with the dimensions of the carry on luggage for United Airlines. Hmmm. Eventually we found a framer who took the canvas off and rolled it so we could fit it in our baggage. They said they'd done it for free but I insisted they take my $20 and get themselves a few beers!

7 March 2015

I've spent the last few months framing, wrapping and packing transport boxes with my works to be couriered to my next exihibition at Agora Gallery, New York. It's actually started already - Melange of Milieu, running from March 6 to March 26, 2015 with Opening Night Reception Thursday March 12, 6 - 8pm. My husband Paul and I will be there for the Reception, then heading off to explore Washington DC and Philadelphia for a little while. We'll be taking photos of my paintings in the show, but here are the works that have been selected for this.

So watch this space and more pictures are going to follow soon...

30 Sept 2014

A few months ago I experienced depression first hand; it was a paralysis of my normal life. I went to work, ate food and slept but everything else stopped. I stopped painting and couldn't look at my easel and the current work on it. 

During this time, my psychologist suggested making small steps in my mind. Rather than "start painting again" I could begin by mixing colours on my palette in preparation. I've spent the last few weeks challenging myself to do that every day and failing...until today. I started with a fresh palette, put out my primary colours and began my usual process of mixing over and over again until I got the correct hue. But then I picked up my brushes and started painting. Once I was finished a small part of me wanted to carry on and on. 

I was offered a solo exhibition in Glasgow a while back. I'm thrilled by this as I've never had a show all to myself. I was set a deadline by the curator which I've wholly missed. However they're being really understanding and are happy to wait until I've finished enough works to fill the walls. I'll explain more about that when I get back on track...

21 Jun 2014

People who know me, know I've always thought the centre of the art world was New York. It wasn't until last week when I was drinking coffee with my husband while travelling Italy, that I realised that I'm wrong. Out of the window were various tones of ochre and sienna, striking street art on walls and painters on the pavement working before your eyes. We were in Florence. 


  

In this place I see art everywhere I look - for me this city lives and breathes creativity. Discussing this with my husband we came to an agreement. New York may be the centre of the art world in financial terms, but Florence is a place where art is actually made. It thinks of ideas, creates them and puts them out there for people to see.

This city urges me to go home and paint after a long break from working at my easel. It has inspired me.

 

12 Jun 2014
On travelling through Florence in Italy we passed through an exhibition the likes of which I have never seen. It showed Jackson Pollock’s drawings of Michelangelo’s sculpture. He was gifted at drafting three dimensional works with graphite on paper. There was film of him painting, talking and several of his finished works. 


  

 


The finale was to walk into a small dark room. The walls, ceiling and floor  became the canvas for his act of painting and then the paintings themselves. I personally found it an inspiring show and I believe if Jackson himself was here today, he would appreciate the way his work was displayed in this exhibition.

Pollock & Michelngelo at the Palazzo Vecchio, Florence, Italy: April 16-July 27, 2014

http://saci-art.com/2014/04/15/pollock-michelangelo-at-the-palazzo-vecchio-florence-april-16-july-27-2014/ 

 

  

22 Apr 2014
I attended the Meet Up Contemporary Art Glasgow Group for an exhibition by a Palestinian artist Khaled Hourani which has stuck with me both artistically and politically. We had a tour guide who worked with Hourani for twenty years whose explanation was hugely enlightening. The work that’s fixed in my mind is a tiled box that reads “Jerusalem 4050km”. Our guide explained there are 80 of these pieces in the world, showing the geographic distance to the capital of Israel. The original reads “Jerusalem 21.07km” and is located in West Bank where he currently lives. The point of the work is that we are free to visit Jerusalem wherever we are in the world. But he, who lives so very close to the city, is unable to do so. I’d recommend the show to anyone who happens to be passing through Glasgow...

http://www.cca-glasgow.com/programme/52a06f6803a43e063a000216 

 


             Khaled HouraniThe Road to Jerusalem, 2009                            

 

26 Mar 2014

I have just completed my first work in 2014. It was a commission by my good friend Marianna Sakkadas of a photo of herself with her daughter Jane. The photo was taken in April 2013 and this has been my focus ever since. There has been much concentration with small brushes and as exact and precise work as I could muster. I am pleased with the result. However, I'm determined to break out and add expression and gut feeling into my work now. I feel a new chapter in my painting life beginning, so let's see what it brings...

                               Mitera, 2014, 0.6m x 0.7m 

 22 Jan 2014

An exhibition Portals of Perception has opened at the Agora Gallery, 530 West 25th Street, New York. The exhibition is displaying four of my works from January 14 until February 4 2014, works that represent my mother's, father's and my hands. If you happen to be in New York City or are passing through then please feel free to go and have a look! 

Unfortunately I can't make it over to see this show. I managed to get photos of it through Marti Jones Dixon (http://www.martijonesdixon.com/) and Sidney Dixon. Huge thanks to Sidney for going there and getting some shots of my work, I really appreciate it. We should actually meet some time!

 

 

 02 Dec 2013

A few weeks ago, Dominique Carton came to my painting environment to take photos of me for his photographic project "Glasgow Artists".  We chatted and then he took some action shots, portraiture and some black and white photographs. I enjoyed the process and the results greatly. They are published on his website http://www.alba-photography.com/ and on his blogsite also http://domcartonphotography.wordpress.com/

© dominique carton http://www.alba-photography.com



 30 Oct 2013

The ARTisSpectrum November 2013 magazine has just been published on line! It's a 30th Anniversary Edition and features artists from the Agora Gallery, New York City on the cover of the copy. As you can see the graphic designers have given a Mondrian theme to the profile photographs. 

I was also asked to give a testimonial for the Gallery and photos for the "Memorable Receptions Around the World", where I entered a photograph taken in the Big Mouth Cafe, Glasgow, Meet Up Glasgow Exhibition, October 2012. Finally, they have published an artist profile of myself, in preparation for my forthcoming exhibition Portals of Perception, January 2014, Agora Gallery, NYC. The following link will take you directly to the on line magazine, showing my profile so feel free to take a look!

http://www.artisspectrum.com/magazine/30/#82

There's also an interesting article called "Banksy's New York Accent" on page 72 which talks about the British graffiti artist's current work in the city

27 Aug 2013
When I continued representation in April 2013 by the Agora Gallery in New York, the Director of the Gallery, Angela Di Bello gave me some advise, based on the enthusiasm that her clients have for my work. She said that a good subject matter for my future work would be "hands". It therefore came as no real surprise when I discovered the works that have been selected for my forthcoming exhibition in January 2014. As you can see, hands will be the subject matter for this show. What I particularly like is that both my mother's and father's hands feature in these pieces. Actually, both Father / Daughter and Hands I appeared in my last show with Agora so therefore they are both framed and wired ready for transport. All I now have to do now is frame my latest two canvases and then I'll be ready for transportation. 


  

6 Aug 2013
I've stumbled across an issue when taking photographs of my finished pieces. Following advice from my Gallery Director, I'm focussing on the subject of hands in my work. My plan was to complete several works, with the possibility of ultimately forming them into a triptych. The first of these I finished in June and is my mother's hands, Guidance, 2013. The next, a single hand of my own, I finished last week and named Resolve, 2013. These are shown here as Guidance I and Resolve I. Given the difference in lighting of the respective jpegs, this makes it difficult to group the works into a series. Therefore I placed both canvases into the same photograph and cropped them appropriately, producing Guidance II and Resolve II. I feel this has produced much more alike images that can cbe comfortably grouped together. I consider this to be a lesson learned!

 

20 July 2013
I've just ordered a fresh batch of business cards from MOO, a great company for designing your own cards of various sizes and styles. I'm using my most up to date works on the back of the cards as shown, with my contact details and website on the remaining side. I'm looking forward to be able to hand them out to gallery viewers of my exhibition in January 2014!

26 June 2013
I've just had the details sent for my next exhibition in New York to be put on next year. The show will run from January 14 until February 4 2014. The Opening Night of the exhibition will take place the evening of Thursday January 16 2014 which my husband and I plan on attending. 
I now have a deadline for when my works can be assessed for suitability for this show... I'm currently reading a book where a sitter for Lucian Freud has published his diary of this time. He states that Lucian appreciated having a deadline for his work as it gave him discipline and focus. That therefore makes me feel less embarrassed that the deadline increases my drive to paint in a big way!

4 June 2013 

My two latest works, Guidance and CraigieJoe have just been put on the ARTmine webpage for sale. The prices for are Guidance is £1340 / $2050 and CraigieJoe, £1732 / $2650. I'm really happy that my changing technique in my painting is going to go on display. I guess all I have to do now is to wait and see!

 

 28 May 2013 

I thought I'd update my news page by saying that I'm going to be involved in an exhibition at the Agora Gallery, NYC, hopefully in early 2014. This is great news as it'll give me a chance to go back to my favourite city of New York but also to go to the Opening Night of the show of course! It's got me planning my paintings between now and then to have enough pieces to cover one of their Gallery walls...feeling really quite happy...

                 Guidance, 2013, 0.4m x 0.4m  

 21 Apr 2013

My first canvas completed in 2013. It's made from a photo of my mother's hands taken Christmas 2012. I've continued with a similar technique to Craigiejoe, 2012 and I feel it's worked well for this canvas. Although my mum disputes it, I think that her hands are beautiful and expressive. As I was painting them I felt the hands didn't work until right at the end when I filled in her engagement and wedding rings. As soon as I did that, the hands could be nobody else's but my mothers.

My next work is a commission. The photo shoot has been done today, with the photographic shots taken by my husband. He is a man who can take a fine picture. As I always say, without his skill I wouldn't have very much material to work with...


22 Jan 2013

I'm currently showing in the 'Portals of Perception' exhibition at the Agora Gallery, New York and a film has been made by Bill Crumlic, the video producer for the gallery. The video shows the recording he made during the Opening Night where the attending artists, myself included, gave him a single word that currently inspires our work. 

Portals of Perception can  be viewed at the Agora Gallery, 530 West 25th Street, NY 10001 from January 16th until February 5th 2013. I'd like to thank the Director Angela Di Bello and her Gallery staff for the help and support that they have given to me in preparing for this exhibition.

 2 Jan 2013

My latest work has now been added to my website. I did a photo shoot with my friend Craig a little while ago and this is the product. A lot of folk have commented that it's rather different from my usual technique. I agree. At times it was more put down to chance... how the paint flowed down the canvas and to what extent. But I feel as though it worked. 

Since my brain injury, I've worked in a very photographic way. This was to try and prove to myself that I was still able to actually paint. But now I'm starting to add a little of myself to my works. This is the first time I've felt really satisfied with my work post injury. So lets see how things change from here on in.

                       craigiejoe, 2012, 0.8m x 0.6m 

3 Dec 2012

I've just been emailed the profile page written about me from Agora Gallery in New York. This will be going into the catalogue for my group show, the Portals of Perception exhibition on between Jan 16th and Feb 5th 2013. The square code thing will direct gallery viewers to this website. Brilliant! If anyone's interested, here's the link to the magazine itself: http://www.artisspectrum.com/magazine/28/#/142/

On that note, my husband and I have now booked our flights and accommodation to New York for my opening night. It's my favourite city in the world, so aside from my show I'm properly excited about going there. In fact I'm going to start looking at the galleries for shows that are worth seeing. The last time we went we saw Jean-Michel Basquiat in Brooklyn and Egon Schiele at Metropolitan Museum of Art...

18 Nov 2012

A few months ago I got an email from the Agora Gallery in New York offering to represent me.  After looking at my website they decided that my work would be attractive to the American market.  After a little bit of deliberation I finally agreed!

As a result of my representation, my work will be shown in the Portals of Perception exhibition in NYC, between Jan 16th and Feb 5th 2013.  My work will also be promoted in an variety of magazines and online publications.

Several of my works have been selected for the exhibition and are shown in the picture gallery below... along with the prices.

15 Oct 2012

I've spent the last couple of months writing an article and taking photographs for a publication in the contemporary art magazine ARTisSpectrum, which is produced by the Agora Gallery NYC, twice yearly.

The article was part of the ARTbeat series which focuses on the art scene in different cities around the world.  I wrote a profile of Glasgow, my home city.  The research was actually quite interesting and I learned a great deal about the history and current art scene in a city that I truly love.

To see my article in this publication brought me a great deal of satisfaction, perhaps more fulfilment than the authorship of any scientific paper in my academic career.  My life is definitely changing!
10 Sep 2012

In 2011 I founded the Glasgow Art MeetUp Group on the meetup.com website.  The purpose of the group was to bring people in the city together to share ideas, go to art exhibitions, and sometimes just to relax and enjoy fellow artists company.

The art group now has over 50 members and includes painters, graphic designers, sculptors, photographers and even folk who simply like going to shows.

One of my last acts as the group leader was to arrange an exhibition of our work in a local venue.  The exhibition was in the Big Mouth Cafe Company, Dumbarton Road, Glasgow, from the 1st of October to the 30th of November 2012.

30 Aug 2012

You may have noticed, but I'm fascinated with people's hands.  I feel they say a lot about us, past and present, and that they can more often than not display a lot of emotion.

I've painted my own hands several times in the last decade, but I've been looking for some contrast recently.  My father agreed to do a photo shoot for my latest work and you'll see that I selected a photo of our hands clasping.

It is fairly clear that my technique is once again rather photographic, but this is something that I'm hoping to challenge very soon.  Watch this space...

3 July 2012

I've finished my latest work, of a Masai Mara elder, which is based on a photograph that my husband took when we were travelling in Kenya in 2009.

I was drawn to this image because of the striking bright colours, the women's thin yet fantasically muscular arms, and of course because of the richly weathered and gnarled face.

This image reminds me of how beautiful and how different life in Kenya is, and that the places we visited were full of such strong female characters.

The image also reminds me how much I feed off my husband's photography. Without him I'd definitely be struggling to get the material that I need to paint.