I paint. Paint can stand in for the world. Paintings are of stone, water and light. Letters from nature. They are in a sense aspects of nature, they are self-sufficient. Paint is almost infinitely variable, hence its potential as a vehicle for a range of moods: from calm reverie to violent defiance. I believe painting is a form of extended thought and by creating emotional and intellectual maps of the world around us can literally illuminate our lives.
I work predominantly with watercolours and gouache, series of abstract paintings and paintings made in nature. Watercolour as a medium has a life of its own, to a certain extent you have to let your hand and eye be ‘taken’. The washes flow, fall, seep and intermingle in often unpredictable ways. The paintings have their own topography, their own logic. A degree of uncertainty is part of the process. With watercolour washes and the energy, movement of a brushstroke, chance and accident play a part.
Painting is a creative medium, intuition and instinct are an inevitable part of the process. However as in other areas of human activity attendant to uncertainty there is a directional impulse. We are endlessly driven by our inherent anxiety to make sense of the world, to find a place of understanding. Sense as opposed to non-sense. An ordering of the world. Even if that ordering, as paradoxically it must do, reflects a degree of ambiguity, uncertainty, messiness.
Painting is ‘slow food’. Paintings take time to look at. Paintings are physical objects in the world. Their presence is affirming because their forms, energies and embodied meanings are apparent. You can always return to the concrete fact of their presence. Paintings, by reflecting the necessity of the world around us can re-order the self.