Gillian Mowbray uses the rural surroundings of her home in Wales as the starting point for delightfully quirky paintings in which the natural colours of the landscape are enhanced to the extent that they positively glow. Trees, hills, cottages and other elements of the environment are rendered in a style which makes you smile. Her work has an endearing “old world” quality; a time when the summers were hotter, the pace of live was slower, and lovers could be seen strolling hand in hand. The places Gillian portrays don’t exist and never did. But that’s the whole point.
Almost exactly the opposite attitude to landscape drives the work of Amy Birch. For her, it is the attempt to catch the visual essence of a moment in time. She works in the landscape, observing the subtle changes of light as time passes; capturing the rawness of the scene. She then returns to the studio to produce the final painting. The resulting canvases invite you in, to experience the same delight in nature which Amy did. The maturity of her work belies her young age.
Kirsty Watson’s work is different again. Her close-up images of faces, are painted with a robustness and vigour which lifts them above mere portraits of the sitter. Indeed, the subject matter of these paintings is the paint itself, the way it has been applied and the unnatural colours she chooses to use. But at the same time, each portrait captures a particular facet of character. They are joyous celebrations of the art of painting.
The exhibition is open every day until June 15th.