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"The essence of the beautiful is unity in variety."
W. Somerset Maugham
December's exhibition takes inspiration from this local writer and brings together thirteen artists from across the world in, Unity In Variety II.
Keith is a London-based, modern contemporary artist specializing in painting, pottery and sculpture. He studied at Farnham Art College, now West Surrey College of Art Design, specializing in ceramics. ‘What is seen and called a picture is what remains - an evidence.’ This statement by Philip Guston in 1956 succinctly represents the feeling I have about my own paintings - the ‘evidence’ of my struggle to be here and now, in the painting, making a statement which expresses my unconscious inner thoughts and conflicts, that which is left behind when worldly preoccupations are forgotten. For me, humour, colour and the surreal are always integral to this ‘pure’ state. My paintings and their titles are ‘what remains’ says Keith about his work.
Siro Carraro is a London-based professional artist. In 2008, he graduated from Central Saint Martins with an MA in Fine Art. His works have been widely exhibited in the UK. In 2007, Carraro won the Boundary Figurative art prize and he was highly commended by the Nagoya University of Arts. He has also worked as a lecturer at the University of Brighton.
Carraro works from his sunny North London studio based in the famous Chocolate Factory.
Sylvia Edwards is an internationally acclaimed artist who established her reputation through the imaginative utilisation of vibrant watercolors. She has had over thirty solo exhibitions in America, Europe, the Far and Middle East since her first commercial exhibition in 1975. Her creative ideas reach an ever-increasing audience of adults and children through her best-selling prints, posters and UNICEF cards. The hallmark of Sylvia Edwards' work and perhaps its most appealing characteristic is it's delightful imagery. Her humor is lighthearted and optimistic. But there is another side to her artistic personality that gives a serious and deeply reflective dimension to her painterly conception. The enjoyment she derives from the craft of painting is infectious and as such, the images conveyed through her work are instantly recognizable.
Stanislav was born in Czechoslovakia in 1977, in a little village close to Prague named Vsenory. He spent more than ten years as a panel beater before discovering a passion for the world of Art & Design. Since August 2004, he has continued to develop a particular interest and understanding towards the relationship between Art and Philosophy, and subsequently applies this to his own work. According to Stanislav, his art represents the importance of understanding deep-rooted connections between people and nature. This approach towards art, he believes, has the potential to build a healthier, friendlier and more creative environment for people. The materials he uses serve as means of expression, and colourfully articulate his phenomenological perception of the world.
Shirin Golestaneh's work represents the journey from within: an abstract world of imaginary landscapes, dreams and places that exist internally. She incorporates moons, suns, brooks, mountains and oceans; incorporating layers of transparencies, in order to create a mosaic of colours that reveal images from our underlying subconsciousness. Viewers may recognize objects within her art work, not through physical experience, but rather an understanding of the sublime. This understanding, she believes, is the shared language -or journey- between the viewer and the artist.
From his studio based in the Old Paradise Yard, Tim Hollins creates sculpture for exhibition and to commission, for indoors and outdoors, in a variety of media. His aim is to draw attention to the timeless in a world where time is everything, and to create work that feasts the eyes, tempts the hands to explore and, above all, engages the mind and heart in a continually fascinating exploration of form. The artist about his work: ‘I have sculpted for many years. My passion came naturally, and my skills through full and part-time study at the Sculpture Academy, Central St Martins and elsewhere. The beliefs and ideas that I express through my work have been developed through professional and personal experience in various stages of my life. Tim’s work is held in private collections in the UK, France and Belgium. Venues where my work is or has been exhibited include: The Affordable Art Fair, LondonThe Sheridan Russell Gallery, LondonThe Biscuit Factory, Newcastle upon TyneVictoria Fearn Gallery, CardiffNewnham Paddox Art Park, Warwickshire. The Art Academy, London Milldene Sculpture Gardens, Moreton-in-Marsh Chelsea Arts Society.
Nikole always imagined herself as an artist, and in 2007, began oil painting.
Her love of exploring city streets greatly influences the subject of each painting.
She recalls fondly that, “After heavy snowfall one day, I ventured outside to visit a cathedral. The imposing building stood there covered with snow. As the sun came out, I felt the whole scenery started to smile cheerfully. It was so beautiful that I returned the following day, with a camera in my hand.”
The image subsequently became Snowy Day (Oil on Canvas. See Right).
Nikole is often inspired by ‘ordinary’ landscapes, and feels the urge to capture such places, focusing specifically on the beauty of their banality.
SU WEN SEAH LONG
Su Wen is a London-based painter, a graduate from Lasalle, College of the Arts in Singapore 1992. She has taken part in group exhibitions in Singapore, Juried Group and Solo Shows in Los Angeles & Chicago where she was based before settling here in the UK in 2006.Su Wen is based in London at MakeSpace Studios near Waterloo Station.
After two years spent studying art foundation in Paris, Oscar left her hometown and moved to London where she completed a BA in Fine Arts at Central Saint Martins School of Arts and Design. Half-way through her studies, she decided to go to Japan for half a year after being selected for an exchange by Kyoto Seika University. It turned out to be an invaluable experience: “ The incomparable sense of beauty I experienced in Japan restored my faith in art for keeps. A faith that the West made me lose in the first place.” Since then, her work remains influenced by Japan’s fascinating culture and history, which he self-reflexively combines with his experience of the western world.
Shavkat is a London –based artist sculptor, a graduate from the Art Academy in Moscov, Russia. In 2003 he was awarded an RBA from the The Royal Society of British Artists Sculpture. “Majority of my pieces have grown from the notion of the universality of life and order within varying forms of life, has no real variety only differing levels of disorder or discontinuity. All living things have, by definition, their own energy and although they involve great structural variety of form, movement and energy are the essence of being. I have attempted to bring forms to their structural minimum and reconstitute the individual parts into collective in order to bring the universality of being from the collective unconscious into the consciousness of (those who interact with the works) the viewers. ” Says the artist about his work.
Sophie MacCarthy grew up in an Anglo-French family with art and literary connections. There are three generations of artists on her maternal side, and her father was the son of Sir Desmond MacCarthy, a member of the Bloomsbury Group. An art school education led on to a passion for ceramics and she made her name in the mid-1980s following her first solo show at Luke Hughes’ showroom in Covent Garden.
In 1992 she was invited to be the first potter-in-residence at Charleston Farmhouse in Sussex, the former home of the painters Vanessa Bell and Duncan Grant. Her work is in several public collections and is represented in many books on ceramics. She taught for ten years at Morley College and still gives one-to-one tuition in her Stoke Newington studio. Since 1990 she has been a member of the Artworkers Guild and was elected Master of the Guild for 2010. She is also a Fellow of the Craft Potters Association of Great Britain. (CPA)
Averil Marks (nee Sherrard) was born in London and studied sculpture from the age of 16 at St Martin’s School of Art under Anthony Caro and Frank Martin.. She exhibited her work at the Young Contemporaries, Gimpel Fils, London, and other galleries before having her two children.
During time spent with her family she designed and made jewellery, which was shown at many venues, as well as working to commission. Averil later returned to fine art as a printmaker and sculptor. Her work is figurative and appears in a variety of materials, including: bronze, plaster, pulped paper, resin and ceramic. She is a member of Farnham Art Society (sculpture prizes 2007 and 2009), Haslemere Art Society and was a founder member of the Surrey Guild of Craftsmen. Averil won the 1st prize in the Chichester Sculpture competition in 2009. Her work has been shown in a large number of group shows. Solo exhibitions have been staged at a number of venues, including galleries and more unconventional spaces, such as hospitals, theatres and learned societies. A number of commissions have been carried out and her work features in collections both at home and abroad. She resides mostly in her Haslemere, Surrey studio, as well as in London.
Sutharshini is a London-based artist painter who works exclusively with organic, mineral paint. Artist about her work: “A Contemporary Visual Art and Contemporary Dance BA preceded my professional Shiatsu (Meridien Healing) practice - with dancers, theatre and film actors as clients. I worked with the very earth and electricity of our bodies. I believe that Certified Organic, solvent-free pigments are in keeping with good conservation ethics. Additionally, the bionic sheen of natural pigments, are immensely life supportive. I often fluidly depict outlines and resonances of the human body. With a Contemporary Dance background, my painting technique developed as my body had: twisting and turning, stretching to discover unique forms and getting strong in the process. To the Viewer for engaging, thanks for your gaze, consideration and acquisitions: long life and honey in the heart from our creative aspect.”
Annie is a London-based artist painter, writer and art curator. Annie about her work: “The main theme in my work is that of conflict, opposites and power. Initially I considered conflict as terrorism. However, I then read "Tales of Power" and ''Journey to Ixtlan'' by Carlos Castanada which are about becoming a warrior or person of great power, capable of magical feats, for which perfect inner balance is essential. This led to the idea of the terrorist as a warrior, but in the mystical sense. It also led to considerations of inner conflict and Carl Jung's ideas of the psyche. Jung suggests inner conflict is due to opposing forces setting up a tension in the psyche ("Memories, Dreams, Reflections"). Fusing these ideas together I began the "Warrior" series of photomontages and paintings. Clearly warriors are engaged in a struggle for power but for the warrior on the spiritual path, the power sought is within and the conflicts are internal in the psyche. For the mystical warrior the opposites are polarisations in the psyche which have to be resolved for progression on the spiritual path. In some cases I have used images of Jihadists especially as 'Jihad' has a second meaning of an inner spiritual struggle or 'greater Jihad'. I have also used tribal and Samurai warrior images as well as more theatrical images from kabuki or mime artists such as Slava Polunin. I have combined symbolism so the mystical has a contextualised political reality as if the mystic is engaged in a quasi-political battle.”