After Rachel I
Jackson's Painting Prize 2021
Acrylic, Oil, Spray Paint
76 x 61 cm
“My paintings are Nature Morte of flora. ‘After Rachel I’ is a response to memories of works by Dutch 17th Century Still Life painter Rachel Ruysch. These memories are translated into a contemporary pictorial language, linked through expressive colour, gesture and form.
I paint from memory, working directly onto the canvas. My desire to respond to the memory is eventually abandoned as intuition and spontaneity take over from linear rational thinking and the work writes its own narrative in the layers of paint and marks.
Compositional tensions arise through gestural marks juxtaposed next to carefully painted lines. Evidence of each layer is visible, revealing the painting’s journey. As the painting evolves I add and remove paint and turn the canvas to destabilise my process.
An interest in the passing of time is central to my work. Flowers are Memento Mori, they remind us of the ephemeral, fleeting nature of life. I think of painting as a time based medium, layers of paint are like timelines on a tree, each holding memories of marks and integral to the finished piece. For me, painting is an ongoing conversation between past and present, an exploration of new forms from old imagery and narratives.”