Friday, April 15, 2011

BP Portrait Award Finalists Announced

The shortlist for this year's BP Portrait Award have been unveiled. The winner, which will be selected on the 14 June, will receive £25,000 prize money and a commission worth £4,000. Of the 2,300 entries this year, here are the 4 finalists.

My money, for what it's worth is on Louis Smith's giant painting "Holly" to win.

Louis Smith with help from Carmel Said, Holly, Oil on canvas, 12 x 8'

Louis Smith, from Manchester, studied painting at Sheffield Hallam University and scene painting at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art. He has exhibited in Britain and Italy. He was a BP Portrait Award exhibitor in 2009.

Louis’ huge portrait is an allegory of the Prometheus story re-imagined in female form – as punishment for stealing fire from Zeus Prometheus was chained to a rock where an eagle ate his liver daily only for it to grow back to be eaten the next day: ‘It’s a message of composure in the face of adversity, something we can all draw strength from in our struggle to make a living each day.’

Distracted, by Wim Heldens, Oil on canvas, 750 x 550 x 20 mm

Wim Heldens is a self-taught, professional artist who lives in Amsterdam and whose work has been seen in numerous group and solo exhibitions in Europe and the United States. He was a BP Portrait Award exhibitor in 2008 and 2010.
Wim’s shortlisted portrait is of Jeroen, a 25-year-old philosophy student to whom the artist has been a father-figure for twenty years: ‘I have been fascinated with painting Jeroen in all stages of life through growing up. While I have painted him many times in groups, once in a while there is the desire to paint a simple portrait of just him. Now, he is an intelligent and sensitive young man.’

Mrs Cerna, by Sertan Saltan, Oil on canvas, 410mm x 510mm

Sertan Saltan, originally from Turkey, now lives and works in Avon, Connecticut (USA), where he is developing a studio. He studied painting at a famous atelier in Istanbul before moving to the United States in 2006 to continue his studies at New York State University where he gained a BFA in Product Design.
Sertan’s sitter, Mrs Cerna, is the younger sister of a friend in New York City: ‘The contrast of knife, gloves and rollers brought both humour and horror to mind. I wanted to capture on canvas that moment which allows the viewer to meet this extraordinary woman and experience the richness and complexity of her preparation for this Thanksgiving dinner.’

Just to Feel Normal, Ian Cumberland , Oil on linen, 1500 x 1000 x 25 mm

Ian Cumberland lives and works on County Down, Northern Ireland. After graduating in Fine and Applied Arts at the University of Ulster in 2006 he has had a solo exhibition at the Albermarle Gallery in London, has won several awards and his work is represented in public collections in Ireland. He was a BP Portrait Award exhibitor in 2009.
Ian’s shortlisted portrait is an enigmatic study of: ‘a friend whose story is like many others from my generation that have fallen victim to themselves and their preferred habits. The title refers to his answer when asked why he continues along his chosen path.’

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Dianne Gall, until April 15, Emerge Art Space, Perth

Dianne Gall's latest exhibition titled "Come the night" is currently on at Emerge Art Space in Perth. The exhibition continues her interest in Film Noir genre and is well worth viewing.

Dianne was recently interviewed by Gemma Jones for The Vine, click here to read

Last year I interviewed Dianne Gall about her paintings, click here to view

The fullness of it all surrounds her, 2011, Oil on Linen,

We will be safe here, 2011, Oil on Linen, 61x1520cm

The other door, 2011, Oil on Linen, 40x40cm

Moonlight 2011, Oil on Linen, 30.5x30.5cm

Friday, April 8, 2011

Rooms with a View: The Open Window in the 19th Century, until July 4, The Met , New York

Rooms with a View: The Open Window in the 19th Century at The Metropolitan Museum of Art focuses on the Romantic motif of the open window as first captured by German, Danish, French, and Russian artists around 1810–20.

This exhibition focuses on a subject treasured by the Romantics: the view through an open window. German, French, Danish, and Russian artists first took up the theme in the second decade of the nineteenth century. Juxtaposing near and far, the window is a metaphor for unfulfilled longing. Painters distilled this feeling in pictures of hushed, spare rooms with contemplative figures; studios with artists at work; and open windows as the sole motif. As the exhibition reveals, these pictures may shift markedly in tone, yet they share a distinct absence of the anecdote and narrative that characterized earlier genre painting.

Presented in four galleries, Rooms with a View features the works of about forty artists, most from Northern Europe. The first exhibition of its kind, it ranges from the initial appearance of the motif in two sepia drawings of about 1805–6 by Caspar David Friedrich to paintings featuring luminous empty rooms of the late 1840s by Adolph Menzel. Many of the artists are little known on these shores, their works unseen until now.

Georg Friedrich Kersting (German, 1785–1847)
Woman Embroidering, 1811
Oil on canvas; 18 5/8 x 14 3/4 in. (47.2 x 37.4 cm)
Klassik Stiftung Weimar, Goethe Nationalmuseum

Caspar David Friedrich (German, 1774–1840)
Woman at the Window, 1822
Oil on canvas; 17 3/4 x 12 7/8 in. (45 x 32.7 cm)
Staatliche Museen zu Berlin, Alte Nationalgalerie

Carl Gustav Carus (German, 1789–1869)
Studio Window, 1823–24
Oil on canvas; 11 3/8 x 8 1/4 in. (28.8 x 20.9 cm)
Die Lübecker Museen, Museum Behnhaus Drägerhaus

Franz Ludwig Catel (German, 1788–1856)
A View of Naples through a Window, 1824
Oil on paper, mounted on canvas; 18 1/2 x 13 1/8 in. (46.8 x 33.5 cm)
The Cleveland Museum of Art

Constant Moyaux (French, 1835–1911)
View of Rome from the Artist's Room at the Villa Medici, 1863
Watercolor on paper; 11 5/8 x 9 in. (29.4 x 22.7 cm)
Musée des Beaux Arts, Valenciennes