Artist's Statement February 2007
About my figurative paintings
In my current studio painting and my computer drawings I am looking to find a crossing point between the colourful abstraction I pursued for several years and a playful, gestural figuration, but all in response to the world around me. I am increasingly aware of common themes connecting my artwork and my longstanding interests in Tai Chi and playing music - rhythm, balance, listening, waiting, repetition, harmony, variation, continuity, sequence, movement and an engagement with tradition.
For several years I painted non-figuratively - my abstract paintings were improvisations, starting from the blank canvas with few preconceptions about where the painting would end up, with each mark, each shape suggesting the next. This was an internal dialogue with the picture surface, with little reference to the world around me. When a painting worked, when it was finished there was beauty and stillness; often a sense of place or landscape would emerge at this point.
But I increasingly found myself wanting to find a way to respond visually what is around me - my family, my home, and the surrounding hills, as well as media images of the wider world For the past year I have been working figuratively often from my own digital photographs, on family portraits in the studio, and drawing and animating in on the computer. I like the directness and simplicity of drawing on the computer, and when I work in acrylics I like to find the layerings, textures, translucencies and colour harmonies that can only be found in paint.