Capturing Beautiful Irish Landscapes

by Aileen Mitchell 24. March 2016 14:13

We love a good landscape at ArtGallery - and this month we celebrated a country famous for its painted scenes. It is, of course, Ireland. 

There are so many ways to capture the beauty of an Irish landscape, whether it's the ever-moving coastline, its lush, green hills, or a dramatic sunrise. 

Here are some ArtGallery artists who all express the character of the landscapes in a unique way:

Cooniger by Arabella Kiszely

Arabella Kiszely beautifully captures the drama of the Beara Peninsula on a cloudy afternoon. The textured sky and sea gives a real feeling of movement, contrasting with the warm orange of the rocks. This oil painting almost puts you in the scene itself. 

Coast by Jeremy Shipton

Jeremy Shipton's acrylic painting has captured the west coast of Ireland on a much calmer, sunnier day. This highlights the wonderful contrasts in Irish weather, and shows how one painting can vary so much from another depending on the season. 

The blues and aquas are what give the painting a strong sense of summer. Although the sea is calmer, there is still movement to the piece, as waves break on the rocks.

The free brush strokes of the cliff top give this area of the work a softness that highlights the many detailed lines in the cliffs below.

Irish Lough Connemara - by Steve Hawthorn

Capturing lights and darks between rays of sunshine and clouds can be done in smooth strokes, as Steve Hawthorn demonstrates in Irish Lough Connemara. Unlike the informal brushwork in the paintings above, Steve has conveyed a sense of stillness in this lake scene using the contrast in light and colour to bring depth to the painting. 

Winding Road by Barbara Craig

Winding Road is a great example of how a landscape can be interpreted in so many different ways. This bright painting of wild flowers by a field in west Ireland captures the playful breeze that gives so many Irish landscapes their energy.

The softness of the line of mountains in the distance gives great depth against the bold strokes in the foreground. 


Buying Art

Powerful Women In Art

by Aileen Mitchell 14. March 2016 17:01

This month we re-visit some of the most powerful women in the world of art.

Judith slaying Holofernes by Artemisia Gentileschi

Artemisia Gentileschi 1593 - 1656

Artemisia Gentileschi was renowned for her ability to manipulate light and dark in her paintings. This is a technique also used by Caravaggio known as chiaroscuro.

Gentileschi painted females as the dominant figures in her work. This was very different from the norm of the seventeenth century, where women were usually depicted as sensitive and timid characters. Also known as the ‘Baroque Genius’, Gentileschi devoted her art and life to fighting for respect as a woman – a subject that was extremely personal to her as a young painter who was abused and later pushed into a forced marriage.


Repetition Nineteen III by Eva Hesse

Eva Hesse 1936 - 1970

Eva Hesse is one of the most influential artists from the twentieth century. As one of the first artists to introduce the post-minimal style after the minimal movement of the 1960’s, her installations are constantly referred to as a source of inspiration for many current artists.

Hesse’s work is often described as ‘anti-form’ and celebrates organic-shaped, tactile sculptures that are so far away from the harsh, rigid lines of the Minimalist movement.

Famous for the use of latex in her work, Hesse used other synthetic materials with a very limited colour palette such as fiberglass and various plastics.

Although Hesse took no political stance in her artwork, she was seen as an inspiration to the Feminist art movement as a successful female artist in a male-dominated world.

Self-Portrait with Thorn Necklace and Hummingbird by Frida Kahlo

Frida Kahlo 1907 – 1954

Perhaps one of the most recognisable faces in twentieth century art, this is one of the many self-portraits of Frida Kahlo.

Dubbed as a surrealist painter, Kahlo specialised in portraying herself in her art. Kahlo did not believe herself to be a surrealist as she insisted that she did not paint dreams, but her reality. She is known to have said, “I paint self-portraits because I am so often alone, because I am the person I know best.” 

Her 140 paintings are symbolic depictions of the psychological and physical wounds throughout her life after a severe bus accident when she was 18 years old. This resulted in life-long surgeries and procedures.

Friends with other surrealists such as Pablo Picasso, Kahlo was also admired and revisited during the Feminist movement of the 1970’s as an icon of female creativity.

Ram's Head with Hollyhock by Georgia O'Keeffe

Georgia O’Keeffe 1887 – 1986

“The men liked to put me down as put me down as the best woman painter. I think I’m one of the best painters.”

Georgia O’Keeffe was one of the most significant artists of the twentieth century. Her paintings of skulls and desert terrains were created at the time of the American modernist movement. This involved art that looked at the regional aspects of America and moved away from the large, industrial cityscapes.

O’Keeffe captured the dry desert landscape of her home in New Mexico in a simplified style that has a very personal representation to it. She also painted a series of flowers and mountain landscapes of Mount Fuji and Peru.

Despite being almost completely blind at the end of her life, O’Keeffe continued to paint with the help of some assistants. At ninety years old, she commented, “I can see what I want to paint. The thing that makes you want to create is still there.”


Art History | Artists

Malvern Theatre - Spring Exhibition - March 6th - April 16th

by Humph Hack 6. March 2016 18:40

As is often the case, all three artists, in this exhibition are new to Malvern. It is part of the ethic of shows organised by this online gallery, to encourage new talent, or talent never seen there before. There is a wealth of artists, of all styles, out there, choosing is part of the fun.

Barbara Fletcher studied at the Cheltenham School of Art, gaining a degree in Fine Art. She is based in Gloucestershire. She draws her inspiration from a variety of subjects, but the works in this show celebrate the coast of the South West of the UK and the wonderful light which has drawn artists there for over a century. Her work, sometimes described as impressionistic, contains enough of the atmosphere of the region to draw the viewer in, but leaves enough for the imagination to allow personal interpretation of the scene

Barbara says, “People often feature in my paintings, often in crowded beach scenes, as I find their “busyness” and enjoyment evoke a slightly ephemeral and whimsical feel to my pictures”.

Tonal and colour relationships are important to Barbara in helping to capture the quality of light, whether it be the unique intensity of the Cornish coast or the gentle and soft light of the Gloucestershire countryside. She works from sketches, photos she has taken, and from memory. She is an established artist with an international reputation.



Simon Knott’s work couldn’t be more different. His sharp focus studies of a range of subjects which attract him vary from, patches of local landscape, to work inspired by the Severn Valley Railway, but mostly animals.  Simon is “Wild about Wildlife”, because he was born in the ancient woodland of Wyre Forest near Bewdley, in the beautiful countryside of Worcestershire, by the River Severn. He has spent most of his creative life in the Wyre Forest area... which has a diverse collection of Birds and Wildlife – the greatest inspiration for his Art.

He studied Art at Hereford College of Art & Design and the University of Central England, Birmingham, where he received a B.A. (Hons) in Design. He collected awards for design including * British Design in Japan * for a Citizen Watch design and a Heals of London Award for Furniture.


 The third artist showing work here for the first time is, Elaine Allender. Her celebrations of nature do not attempt realism in a photographic sense. She came to art by the roundabout route of gardening. For the past twenty years she has loved designing and planting first her own, then other people's gardens.

A few years ago, she started to experiment with putting paint onto canvas, “not really sure what I was doing”, but enjoying the experience and finding the same compulsion as she did when in the garden. Although the images invoke the beauty of nature they are strictly imagined scenes, where the process of applying paint to canvas is part of the pleasure enjoyed by the artist and gleaned second-hand by the viewer.

Elaine explains that, “All sense of time goes, and I'm left with the sensory experience of colour and texture. I paint meadows, coastlines and landscapes, always with some of my favourite blooms”.

The exhibition runs until 16 April. The Theatre is open every day. The Malvern complex houses, two auditoria, a cinema and a good restaurant. 


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