My works embody multiple areas of interest, with the connecting component being an exploration of the relationship between landscape and narrative.
My paintings are mostly small-scale oil paintings on paper, and my starting point is always with an image of somewhere that already exists, although the end point I hope for is a painting that encompasses both reality and myth.
I paint with a limited palette as I feel this removes a sense of time and reality from my paintings. I use oil paints with mediums that oppose each other, creating distorted layers, stains and drips that form dream-like landscapes and settings.
My paintings of German homes, entitled das Mutterland, are from photos I have taken when visiting family in Germany. At the root of these works are notions of displacement or belonging, as I consider my family’s history during and post WWII, and how ‘home’ was something transient and safety was searched for.
Germany’s culture is laden with folklore; the woodland landscapes are steeped with dark tales, both real and fictional, which still fascinate us today. The fairytale homes I paint look idyllic but haunting, as if they hold secrets and we can only be left to wonder what might have taken place behind those walls or who may have lived there.
Themes of myth, narrative and landscape carry on through to other areas of my practice. Alongside das Mutterland, I have embarked on a series entitled Bomb Ponds.
This series of works considers scars or remnants of historic events on our landscapes which have an appearance of the ‘everyday’ and will often go overlooked. Bomb ponds are ponds which have formed within craters on the earth as a result of bombs dropping during WW2.
Nature has reclaimed the marks made by these horrific events, and these seemingly unspectacular ponds now contain life and are in their own way a small miracle.