Thursday, May 3, 2012

The land at the End of the Weather Report: Chatham Island Paintings

Ohira Bay 2 oil on canvas 300x600mm 2011

Ohira Bay oil on canvas 300x600mm 2011

Basalt Meets Schist 500x1000 oil on plywood 2011

Volcanic Cones Chatham Islands1 300x900oil on canvas 2010

Volcanic Cones From Maunganui oil on linen 600 x 900 mm 2011

Volcanic Cones 5 oil on linen  600 mm x 900 mm 2011

Chatham Islands Sea Mounts 3 Views 600 mm x1200 mm oil & mixed media on board 2010

Outcrop at Maunganui 260 x 370 mm. Monoprint 2010

Basalt Columns (detail) Monoprint 2010

                                                      Basalt Columns vignettes  (detail)

Basalt Columns Vignettes 210 x 600 mm oil & mixed media 2011

Basalt Columns 400 x1200 mm oil on board 2010

Ohira Bay 3  400 x 1200 mm oil on plywood 2010

 Basalt Columns 5  400 x1200 mm oil & mixed media on board 2010

Volcanic Earth 1  210 x 300 mm oil & mixed media on canvas 2011

 Volcanic Earth 2  210 x 300 mm oil & mixed media on canvas 2011

Volcanic Earth 3  210 x 300 mm oil & mixed media on canvas 2011

                               Volcanic Earth 4   210 x 300 mm oil & mixed media on canvas 2011

                                                                   Skeleton Trees (detail)

Skeleton Trees 210 x1000 mm oil on plywood 2011

Some of these works were exhibited at Pataka Porirua in 2010 as part of the Fine Spells exhibition and Outcrop at Maunganui was exhibited in a group show at Solander Gallery also in 2010

Artist’s statement

 Experiencing the stark and minimal forms of the Antarctic environment has had a profound influence upon my work. I bring this fascination with geological processes and landforms to my Chatham Island experience. This series of paintings focuses upon 2 iconic Chatham Island landmarks.

The small volcanic cones once submerged now rise out of a sea of purple brown scrubland to meet an expanse of cloud and sky, a landscape of space and light.  Patterns of light and shade illuminate the land as cloud is blown across the sky. The basalt columns lining the coast at Ohira are a stark contrast to this. These pentagonal columns, uncanny in their resemblance to man made structures, rise above the sea formed by the slow cooling lava of ancient volcanic eruptions, the darkness of stone evoking subterranean origins. A southerly wind whips up white foam on the swells rolling in to crash against rock, white on black, horizontal against vertical. One place reflects light and colour the other absorbs it intensifying the contrast between light and dark

The visit was of short duration but this intensified the experience and has forced me to focus upon the essentials, filtered by time and memory. My intention is to express what I felt as well as what I saw. The push and drag of brush stroke, the substance of paint and texture, the movement of the hand recreating the movement of wind & water, the pattern of rock forms, is the day to day biography of creating a painting. The internal and external landscape meeting in these images of the islands at the end of the weather report.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Margaret Elliot: My Latest Antarctic Paintings

Margaret Elliot: My Latest Paintings:  Freeze Frame 1 Oil on Canvas 600x2000mm  2012  Freeze Frame 2 Oil on Canvas 200x1500mm  2012  Freeze Frame 3 Oil...

Sunday, April 22, 2012

My Latest Paintings

 Freeze Frame 1 Oil on Canvas 600x2000mm  2012

 Freeze Frame 2 Oil on Canvas 200x1500mm  2012

 Freeze Frame 3 Oil on Canvas 400x1200mm  2012

These works were exhibited in the Wellington Fringe Festival as part of the translucent landscapes exhibition
for more information about the project.

This was a statement I wrote to accompany the work

Artist’s Statement

On reflecting upon the idea of translucency and how it is expressed in my practice I began to think how it relates to clarity of memories of landscapes that have had significance for me.  The obscuring agent can be water, mist, or in this case time. The last time I went to the Antarctic was late in 2001 (a summer with white nights). How much is the remembered image in the mind’s eye based upon photos rather than the actual experience?  The actual memory is foggy and incomplete without the photo as a reminder of specific details.

 When I was preparing for this show I thought images of Antarctica would express the idea of translucency with the subtle semi- transparent blues and greens of ice contrasting with the black lava outcrops and partially obscured with drifting veils of cloud with cobalt shadows cast upon the snowfields.  I went through my slides and found images I’d abandoned, looked again and saw possibilities that I’d missed 10 years ago.

 I have often found that an insignificant photo can make a good starting point for a painting with more possibilities for creating something that goes beyond the original image. There is a point when the photo is abandoned as reference material and the painted image dictates the next step resulting in a parallel entity with its own reality, communicating a sensation of movement and expansion beyond the frame.  

for biography and past works go to