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Discerning The World of Arts

“Untangling The Chains” - Michelle Hold

Abstract | Cubism | Expressionism | Figurative | Fine Art | Modern

May 2018

Editor’s Letter Dear Readers, I hope that you are all well. I am pleased to inform you that we will be celebrating Michelle Hold’s works on Thursday 7th June and I am honoured to host a private soiree at The Discerner’s Residence in Mayfair, London for this occasion. As you may already know, I am a big fan of her works, and having several of her pieces in our premises is a real delight. Michelle will obviously attend our soiree, and she has already planned to talk about each work exhibited, after the piano recital offered by a selection of wonderful classical pianists. If you are in London on Thursday 7th June, you are cordially invited to join us to enjoy this fantastic art evening, and socialise with like-minded ladies and gentlemen. Thank you for contacting me at to make your reservation before the 20th of May. I am highliting Michelle Hold’s works this month, but please be assured that I am not forgetting the other outstanding artists who are showing in our May issue. They are all different, but equally talented, so I would grately encourage you to contact them, if you are particularly interested in any of their works. You will also be probably happy to read that Lou Hamilton has written two fantastic books (How To Be Fearless and Fear Less), which you can order directly from the publication. It is also pleasing to know that her works are not only available on canvas, as she has recently started a homeware collection!


Kindest regards Celine Gaurier-Joubert

Contact & advertising enquiries: E: W: T: 0044 20 7491 9925

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Michelle Hold

Melanie Wright

Rita Zimmerman

Scott McLachlan

Frederic Paul

Janice Sugg

Alison Shanks

Nicholas Coley

Lou Hamilton

Angela Saxon

Robert Noreika

Sarah Jane Brown

Louise Holgate

Emma Davis

David Henty

Gina Love

Caia Matheson

Evi Antonio

Amy Olds

Tim Short

Thomas Strumpel

Michelle Hold Michelle Hold is a German-born artist based in Italy who paints vibrant abstract works inspired by emotion and energy. Her canvases are loud and layered, enticing the viewer to look further and further into their depths. We just love the expressive force of Michelle’s canvases, and we’d recommend them for any interior in need of some punch. The artist, who grew up in Austria, had begun to study architecture when she fell into modelling. On her travels, she took various art and textile design classes. She then worked as a textile designer in Milan before later throwing herself full time into painting. Michelle has held solo exhibitions throughout Italy and in London, and she has participated in international art fairs in Miami, Athens, Milan and Berlin. Her works have featured in group exhibitions across the globe. She has been shortlisted for the RiseArt Prize in 2018.

Art is my life and passion. My work is based on capturing the essence of feelings, emotions and the invisible, eternal energy that pervades in the universe, focusing on beauty and it’s scarcity in current time. I am inspired by nature and new science that meets spirituality. Creating from a place of no time , no space no body in my studio in Italy. Like an architect I love to construct the images with multiple layering, but at the same time leaving space for surprise, for something unexpected to happen, where my dance like gestures encounter the vibrations of color. Color is vital to convey my message of harmony and wellbeing and I am interested in the perception of space and emotion through the equilibrated use of color, which I have trained while working in textile design. Currently I am working on paintings for my solo exhibition for 2018 ‘Color is calling’ where I will elaborate the deeper, silent message color brings and the healing influence it has on us. Color isn’t just color, specially in my paintings it shows a state of mind, feelings and emotions. I aim to offer the spectator a view into special moments of time where all is possible and like my creations to enchant, add to wellbeing and open the mind.

“Searching for lost knowledge” Acrylics, pigments, paper on canvas 60 cm x 60 cm

“Feel the energy” Acrylics, pigments on canvas 120 cm x 150 cm

Rita Zimmerman I taught myself how to paint with oil paints when I was 14 and have never stopped. The love of the craft of painting with luscious paints and solvents have always been a part of my life and since a teenager I have had a constant dedicated studio wherever I have lived. I consider myself greatly blessed to be able to dedicate my life to my art. I have also been lucky to exhibit in museums and galleries in the U.S., Europe and Israel and have had my work collected by private collectors and museums for close to forty years. I was awarded a full scholarship and received my M.F.A. From the University of Cincinnati where I was born. A few highlights have been one person exhibitions in Paris, Vienna and Berlin. I lived in Colorado in the Rocky Mountains with my husband and two sons. In 2012 we moved to Israel so we could be part of the miracle of the modern state of Israel.

I first became acquainted with Rita Zimmerman’s work some two years ago at a local exhibition. I became enthralled almost immediately. Her artistic language is deeply private, although her artistic manner is suggestive of–and bears–an impressive material reality. Her palette is predominately dark, and although she is a master of tonal nuance, her painting is deceptively rich in color. Applied with brisk strokes of the brush, she eschews cheap visual effect, and models form with a touch that is sure and certain; a touch that is reminiscent of nineteenth-century Realist masters. Her favorite subjects–often the heads of animals or adolescent children–crowd the picture plane. Nothing extraneous invades the scene, indeed her subjects are often isolated and alone, leaving the viewer to explore every nuance of the sitter’s gaze. Zimmerman’s portraits of young children, are, I believe, masterpieces of contemporary painting. There is great simplicity of pose in these works. Their manner betrays an almost disconcerting aversion to the particularities of individualized appearance, making it difficult to identify these works as “portraits.” Instead, the sitter–often posed somberly and alone–is rendered with a spontaneous and fluid handling of the paint that obliterates detail and lends a veiled anonymity to the subject. Posed somberly and executed in dark tones, not a speck of sentimentality invades Zimmerman’s “portraits” of children. To discover meaning, we must explore areas lying well outside the artist’s simple dexterity at rendering visual reality. Instead, meaning is concentrated in fleeting, momentary expression. In the best of these paintings, such moments bear a haunting undercurrent of emotion. Their expressive power resides in the unveiling of indistinct, internal psychological states that are common in us all. Our own invisible lives are made visible by the artist as we see ourselves–perhaps our uncorrupted selves–in a child’s forlorn glance, angry stare or dreamy lassitude. Children, therefore, are a powerful metaphor, and, in Zimmerman’s hands, hint at how the innocence of youth–of the child within us all—can be corrupted by an often bitter, impersonal and unforgiving world. Michael De Marsche, PH.D. President and CEO Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center “From the first time I saw her paintings it was a jolt, very individual and the work of a master. Each individual brushstroke, color and composition are decisively hers and no one else’s. “ Roberto G. Agnolini, Director, Bryan and Scott Ltd. Art Gallery Colorado Springs, Colorado “Something essential like soul condenses onto Rita’s canvases. Their presences inhabit a compelling space.” Helen Eberhardie, M.A. RCA

“Beauty” Oil on linen 76 cm x 86 cm “Beauty” emerged in cadmium orange and red then premiered at the FAC Modern, Colorado Springs

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Frederic Paul Frederic Paul is a half German, half Filipino contemporary artist. Born 1993 in Munich. He lives and works in Munich and Landsberg am Lech. In the sensitive and poetic artworks of the young painter Frederic Paul, one recognizes his Asian roots as well as the great talent to bring his feelings into his works. Profound, expressive, with elaborate mixing techniques and a coherent overall composition. He is inspired by the bold colours, spices, floral diversity and intensity of Asian cities. Using a range of media, such as bits of canvas, rice paper, acrylics and oil colour, Paul brings his painting to life with a three dimensionality and depth. After his first appearances and his first exhibitions he will devote himself to his art and consistently continue his series “Faces” and “Asia”. He has exhibitions in Germany, London, Belgium, Portugal and soon in the USA.

I want my art to set people’s feelings free, to create a true communication between my art and its beholder.

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“JJapan” Mixed media on stretched canvas 140 cm x 120 cm

“Tiny TOKYYO” Mixed media on stretched canvas 120 cm x 110 cm

Alison Shanks Alison originally comes from London, UK but spent some of her youth growing up in Zambia, Africa. She has since lived in many other countries: France, Spain, Ireland, Wales, USA, Sardinia and is now currently living in Sicily, Italy. She completed her first Degree in Fine Art in London at Hornsey School of Art and followed that with a set design career in the Film and Television Industry. Amongst living in other countries she lived the longest in Colorado, USA where Alison built a house, married and had two children, returning to the UK when they were very young and working at first as a Greenwood furniture maker and then concentrating on her first love, sculpture.

Alison returned to full time education in 2007 to gain a degree in Ceramics at Bath Spa University, UK. and continued to gain a Master of Arts in Ceramics. She then moved to a studio in Shoreham, West Sussex to continue making sculptures and lived on an old sailing boat which led to deciding to sail around the world to undertake various artists’ residences. Initially intending to sail to Brazil where she had been offered a studio, an exhibition and some teaching at a University there, her very old dog found the journey difficult so she and her partner turned the boat into the Mediterranean, eventually arriving in Siracusa, Sicily where they bought an old semi-derelict farmhouse and built a studio from which Alison now works. Alison’s sculptures are in many private collections worldwide. She has exhibited both nationally and internationally. My sculptures are primarily heads made of Porcelain Clay which is then silkscreen printed with photographic mass media images. The images on the clay are then cut, stretched and manipulated into a collage. In my current series I am currently interested in incorporating Binary Codes and clouds in my work.. The photographic facial image is made to seem slightly lost in screen transmission and interference lines, white noise and Binary codes. The clouds are perhaps IClouds, or the idea of being lost in a cloud of confusion, or perhaps pollution. In 1936 Walter Benjamin wrote in his seminal essay “The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction” “The adjustment of reality to the masses and of the masses to reality is a process of unlimited scope, as much for thinking as perception.” There are various underlying themes in my work showing how we are controlled and manipulated by an oversaturation of - mass media, technology, social media, fake news, surveillance, religion and consumerism in all forms. There is a loss of self: we are confused, distorted, invaded and out of balance. I also hope that my heads have an ancient, God like, larger than life, uncanny quality. Sigmund Freud said that the uncanny is invoked in our perception when something that was familiar becomes unfamiliar following the slightest change.

“Atomic PacWoman” Porcelain and Steel stand H 60 cm W 40 cm D 40 cm

“Identity” Porcelain and Steel stand H 75 cm W 30cm D 20cm

She is a PacWoman referencing the computer game Pacman with Atomic Bomb clouds.

Loss of self. Identity crisis with Iclouds. Identity lost in clouds

“Goddess” Porcelain with Steel stand H 64 cm W 40 cm D 34 cm

“Starhead” Earthernware Clay with Steel stand H 77 cm W39 cm D 25 cm

An angry Goddess or perhaps Devil with Iclouds

A disjointed lost in transmission person

Lou Hamilton Lou sells to collectors worldwide privately & through the online gallery Saatchi art. Her work has been commissioned for site-specific projects, won prizes and exhibited in both group and one-woman shows. She studied at Byam Shaw School of Art and Chelsea College of Art, graduating from both with Distinction. Her conceptual work was followed by welding scrap steel and wielding an early video camera, and the TV/film industry seduced her while she raised her kids until she finally returned to painting and drawing. Her book of drawings “Brave New Girl” was published in 2016 and her new illustrated self-help book Fear Less is out in April 2018. Her painting, drawing & sculptural installation show “O” is to be exhibited from March 22nd -25th 2018 at The Other Art Fair London. She is a life Member of the Chelsea Arts Club.

Lou Hamilton’s work consists of abstract oil paintings and ink drawings on paper. Her focus has been on landscape but gradually her view turned from looking forwards to the horizon, to seeing the world from above. At first she painted the hotch potch rectangles she saw from a plane until her attention turned to the domestic, piles of crockery piled on top of each other like a target. The concentric circular patterns took over her paintings but then her drawings started to simplify the imagery still further. Each day she started to draw freeform circles with beautifully viscous inks using calligraphy brushes. They weren’t perfect and they were finished off with a wiggly line led away by her character Brave New Girl who steps off a red Chinese block mark, into the unknown. These repetitive drawings, one day after another became like a meditation; a circular trace of calm and order in the chaos of the day. Lou turned back to her paintings and simplified them too. Pale rings on dark backgrounds or dark circles against light. Yin and yang. Chaos and order. Suffering and the search for meaning. A balance of opposites. Life as eternal, infinite energy that never disappears but only changes form; the circular span of life. Carl Jung was compelled and comforted by drawing mandalas long before he discovered what they meant. “Formation. Transformation. Eternal Mind’s eternal recreation.”(Memories, Dreams, Reflections 195-196) He believed they represented the wholeness of the Self, the complete personality that is harmonious when everything is going well but will not tolerate self-deception. We cling to a round earth, are warmed by a round sun and our waters are guided by the pull of a round moon. At the beginning of humanity we sat round a camp-fire. We built stone circles like the British Stonehenge or the Polish Seven Sisters in answer to our spiritual call and gradually over time we came to construct grand cathedrals with ornate round rose windows that gave us the vision to something higher than ourselves. Yurts, igloos, geodesic domes, the roofs of temples and mosques envelop us in the three-dimensional semi-circle, with its footings forming a complete circle at its base. In hill forts and fortress towns the rings of walls, circle of ramparts and tower sitting on the plan of a circle offered protection, sanctuary and power. We were comforted by the secure enclosure that a circular boundary traced around us. Buddhists view the circle and their Mandala as a symbol of the sky, as transcendence; and the Universe is symbolized by The Wheel of Dharma, like the wheel of a cart that keeps moving, as in the teachings of Buddhism that continue to spread endlessly across geography and time. The eight spokes of the wheel symbolize the eightfold path of Buddha; guidelines to living well, with the right view, intention, speech, action, livelihood, effort, concentration and mindfulness. When you’ve got it ‘right’ in any of these areas you can feel it. When you work towards achieving ‘rightness’ in all of these then your whole life feels balanced. It makes for a life in progress. Every day is different and each challenge tests our ability to hold onto the right way. We are constantly slipping away from the guidelines, and so coming back to the circle is a constant reminder. We feel the substance of history, culture and time behind simple circular marks; behind the significance of the circle. The foundations of its symbolism run deep and its narrative has many layers. Because of all this Lou returns to it over and over and finds something new each time she puts ink to paper or paint to canvas. Creating a circle tunes her into the forces of nature, whilst her work is set in the square of the paper or canvas as geometric stillness and quiet in a busy and chaotic world. She aspires for the viewer to feel that same sense of completeness and comfort, a focus in which to rest our eyes and our minds, a place to re-energise our spirits; a cyclical continuum in which false starts, mistakes and challenges are all part of positive progression and learning.

“Eye of the storm ” Oil, plaster, acrylic on canvas 50 cm x 50 cm

“Blue Zone” Ink on paper (undreamed) 29 cm x 29 cm

“Erratica” Ink on paper (undreamed) 29 cm x 29 cm

“Red Earth” Ink on paper (undreamed) 29 cm x 29 cm

These works are of concentric circles; the phases our mind goes through as we slow it down, relax and focus on what matters. Everyday I make an ink drawing as part of my meditation practice, inspired by Japanese Enso ink drawings. My abstract oil paintings build on these drawings to create a deeper narrative in layers of paint & plaster. Each work is signed off with Brave New Girl from my two books “How to be Fearless” & “FEAR LESS”

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Artists often have a renaissance approach to creativity and Lou Hamilton is no exception. She experiments with different media and materials and this diversity in her artistic practice expresses itself through paintings, books, home-ware and art on apparel. Here are some examples of her work:

Brave New Girl- How to be Fearless UK version published by Orion Spring- (also a US version published by Sourcebooks) Over a hundred black & white drawings showing you how to be fearless with resilience & humour featuring artist Lou Hamilton’s character Brave New Girl

FEAR LESS published by Orion Spring Order a signed copy of FEAR LESS a self-coaching book with Brave New Girl illustrations to help you fear less and be more. Packed with stories, interviews, real life experiences and practical tools you will learn to propel yourself towards a bright future & a Brave New You

Tshirts also available:

Peace cushion: from an original artwork by Lou Hamilton upcycling one of her old Brave New Girl tshirt designs and digitally printed onto cushions. Filled with feathers or synthetic stuffing the soft cushion is a plush suede feel. 50cm x 50cm

Robert Noreika Bob is a graduate of Paier School of Art and has been a professional artist for forty years. A prominent national award winning artist and illustrator, his paintings hang in both corporate and private collections throughout the United States, Europe, and Japan. In November 2009, the New Britain Museum of American Art acquired for their permanent collection a piece from his “Turtle-esque” series, “Catfish with Turtle”. Bob’s work is also featured in “100 Artists of New England” by Schiffer Publishing. He is represented in numerous galleries and teaches and lectures throughout New England. He has illustrated several children’s books and magazine editorials.

In 2015, Bob became a Signature Member at the American Watercolor Society. Bob is an elected member of the National Society of Painters in Casein and Acrylic, the Salmagundi Club, the Lyme Art Association, the Connecticut Watercolor Society, the Connecticut Plein Air Painters Society, the Connecticut Academy of Fine Arts and he is a signature member of the New England Watercolor Society. Twice, Bob’s work has received awards and selected for the AWS traveling exhibition that toured the country in 2011 and 2013. Bob’s passion for art is matched by a natural talent to paint a wide variety of subjects, highlighted by expressive coastal scenes, intimate woodland pictorials and street scenes. Over the past decade, Bob works passionately on large formatted works on both canvas and paper. These studio pieces incorporate his years of observation, rendering and careful studies of aquatic life. This ongoing series is called “Turtle- esque” expressing gestural fluidity in a semi-abstract setting.

“Turtle-esque” A Series of Aquatic Expression Fluid Acrylics and Beyond “Endless curiosity is what drives Bob’s vision in this quest to capture the stillness above and the symphony below” The Back Story: what grew from a children’s book illustration project to a series that has captivated Bob’s passion for the past decade are his “Turtle-esque” works of art. Bob’s work encompasses the widest variety of technique and texture - pushing the limits to find one totally submersed in his latest works. Bob’s colleagues and collectors have been calling this body of work. “Brilliant! a catch worth pondering and gazing!:” “Marked by a thirst for exploration this series flows from a brush held in the hands of a modern day master” Fishing or canoeing Bob enjoys the opportunity to make micro observations below the water surface. There’s a total aquatic underworld to discover and explore. “Turtle-Esque” begins with this premise, at first in a very non-descript way and then the magic begins. Bob starts to articulate shapes, color, form and various textures which morph into aquatic plants, turtles fish, and frogs.. By suggestions of loose brushstroke Bob strives to emulate the energetic waters and undercurrent - with rhythm and gestural movement. In Bob’s words: “Blue Ascension” is a pinnacle piece in this series. Through a culmination of imagination and masterful techniques fostered over the past forty years Bob continues his artistic quest. As an outdoor enthusiast you ‘ll find Bob freshwater fishing from Maine to the Florida Coast. From the infamous west branch of the Farmington River where you’ll find trophy-sized trout in abundance, to salt water marshes to local ponds filled with turtles and frogs in their natural habitat. Bob’s intimate knowledge of these subjects plays a significant role in heightening awareness of our natural surroundings. One maybe captured first by the vivid display of color but it’s the subtle nuances of activity below that continuously searching for more.

“Mega Perch” Acrylic 76 cm x 100 cm

Louise Holgate I studied Fashion and Textiles and then Environmental Design/Architecture at Chelsea School of Art and The Royal College of Art. I worked as an architect/ designer in London for many years. I always found time to paint and in 2008 moved to Bruton, Somerset to establish my painting studio. In 2015 Highgate Contemporary Art Gallery, London showed my work in a joint exhibition with Ruth Bunnewell. My paintings were also included in their Summer Exhibitions in 2015/2016. In 2016 I had my first solo exhibition at the restaurant Festa Sul Prato, in Deptford, London. My work was also included in the Bath Society of Artists 111th Annual Open Exhibition. In 2017 my work was included in NOA (National Open Art)/ARTROOMS exhibition in London. During this year I also showed my work with Rosvik Gallery at The Affordable Art Fair, Battersea, London and The Hope Charity Ball in Bath. My sketchbook was included in Rabley Drawing Centre’s SKETCH Open Exhibition. My paintings are regularly exhibited at the Chelsea Arts Club, London and are in a number of private collections in the UK and in Europe. My Paintings are: semi-abstract and I work with oil paint on board and on canvas. I work intuitively. The initial steps of a painting are without thought or premonition, like a dancer or an athlete. At some point during the painting process I arrive at a dialogue with the work. This is followed by much exploring and experimenting until a final conclusion is reached. Inspiration for my paintings comes initially from events and experiences and from my subconscious where a storehouse of material is found. I also like to give myself limitations – for instance use no more than 2 colours. Colour and its many aspects are important in my work. This includes the mixing, blending and layering of colours to produce a sense of light and of space. I also like to use colour symbolically to communicate messages. For instance, my palette changes with the place or season - be it earth colours of the winter, acid colours of fields of rape in flower or the blue of tropical waters. I am drawn to the contours of ancient landscapes and the patina and shape of objects and buildings worn by time. An acknowledgement of the resulting beauty can be found in many of my paintings – often through the use of texture. Amongst the many artists whose work I admire and feel a great affinity with are the post-war British artists. Their fascination with the archaeology and the sculptural monuments of our ancestors are a particular inspiration. I see my work as contemplative and intimate in scale. I invite the viewer to develop a visual relationship with my paintings that is uplifting and whose visual meaning can change to reflect the fluctuations of their state of mind.

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“Here Comes Spring One” Oil on canvas 50 cm x 61 cm A response to the change of season and the arrival of spring. Painting One of a series of Two paintings

“Here Comes Spring Two” Oil on canvas 51 cm x 61 cm A response to the change of season and the arrival of spring. Painting two of a series of two paintings

David Henty David Henty is now recognised as the number one copyist artist in the world today. His work is meticulously and lovingly recreated to the finest detail, having honed his craft over 25 years to now master the techniques and nuances of some of history’s most iconic artists. Each piece involves rigorous preparation through an immersive research process: studying the original painting where possible, developing an understanding of how the artist worked, and sourcing the correct materials and pallet true to the period. David’s work, and art copying, has become it’s own genre, and its own legitimate art form, much sought after and collected by art lovers and galleries alike.

With more than twenty-five years experience replicating great works of art, David Henty is now considered the world’s best art forger/ copyist. He has considerable expertise in convincing the viewer and art experts, having mastered the techniques and idiosyncrasies of some of the most iconic artists, from Michelangelo and Caravaggio through to Pablo Picasso. Each piece involves rigorous preparation through David’s immersive research process, studying the original painting, developing an understanding of how the artist worked, and sourcing materials true to the period. David Henty’s history as a copyist/art forger starts, appropriately enough, with a conviction for forgery, more than twenty-five years ago. It was while serving the resulting prison sentence that David’s passion for art was rekindled. Quickly seduced by the technicality of copying, he has honed his craft to perfection, establishing a thriving legitimate business. David explains that his is a very different discipline to producing the original artwork, and that copying is notoriously difficult. Mastering an artist’s unique style, however, is a challenge he embraces. It is only once he’s developed an affinity with the artist, that he’s connected with him or her that he will attempt to emulate their style. This means that David’s preparation for a painting begins even before his brush touches the canvas! Prior to starting work on a piece, David will delve into the artist’s life and thoughts in order to get beneath the skin of that person. He derives huge satisfaction from deconstructing a work and analysing how to lay down each stroke, as well as mixing the perfect palette. There is the upmost importance of copy artists in the art world, to produce works of the greatest artists that have every lived. Once this art form has gone it will be lost forever. David Henty produces his highly collectible paintings for enthusiasts and private collections around the globe. Each original piece is presented in its own bespoke, handmade frame and signed on the reverse by David to certify authenticity. A star in his own right, David’s copies have come to the attention of high profile media channels such as The Sunday Telegraph, the BBC, and Radio 4, who’ve all run articles on him, as well as an appearance on the Sky Art channel, Sky News and many more. This month David will be appearing on the BBC programme Click, discussing the latest technology in finding fakes and demonstrating how he recreates the masters.

“You’ve shown me your masterpieces, now show me your fakes.” Quote from H.F. du Pont to a fellow collector

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“Female Nude, 1916� Oil on canvas 92 cm x 60 cm Inspired by the tragic story and life of Modigliani, David has lovingly recreated this iconic image

Caia Matheson Caia Matheson is an award-winning contemporary oil painter based in Brighton, UK. She was born in Johannesburg and educated in Tokyo and London. Matheson has exhibited widely in the UK, and has been shortlisted for numerous awards, including winning Brighton Artist of the Year in 2004. Matheson painted Europe’s first Rainbow Pedestrian Crossing Brighton in 2014, and in 2013 her work was selected by author Neil Gaiman for the book A Calendar of Tales. Matheson is inspired by wabi sabi, or the beauty of imperfection.

For Matheson, painting is a very physical process. She loves to mix paint mediums and experiment with the effects. This, for her, can be the most exciting part of the creative process. Her mediums are oils – tubes of oil paint, oil bars, oil pastels and mixtures of oil paints and dyes. She enjoys the texture consistency and smell of them. Matheson paints with her hands and washing-up sponges onto canvases laid flat on the floor, building and scratching off layers of oil paint to create a world within worlds. The layers are designed in a way to expose different subjects of the composition. These subjects are buried in the dark and light spaces and come out and disappear as the light changes presenting different aspects depending on shifting light conditions and mood. My work is about words and verse from all sources such as radio plays audio books stories song lyrics and poetry. I get such great pictures from words and translate them into my work as a visual narrative. I begin painting with a specific colour that I have in my mind’s eye. I then introduce other colours and begin to build layers on the canvas. These layers are then scratched off and layered over again like a palimpsest literally meaning ‘scraped clean and used again’. I love the idea of previous markings that are not visible but are still an inherent part of the composition. I consider each successive layer a generation to populate or depopulate the canvas as needed and create my own world as I go. I like to create a world within worlds. As a kid I used to be fascinated by the Lowly worm in the Richard Scarry books. I loved scouring each page to seek out that worm and when I found it I would feel most content like I had discovered a piece of secret truth that would uncover all the answers to my questions about the universe. There are some Lowly worms in my abstracts albeit in symbolic form.

“Diffusion” Oil and dyes on hand stretched canvas H 130 cm x W 107 cm x D 3 cm

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Amy Olds American by birth, Amy Olds has been living and working in Britain since 1988. Having a BA in Painting and Printmaking from Virginia Commonwealth University, she then gained her Masters in Fine Art from Manchester Metropolitan University in 1997. A residency in 1998 at Arteleku in San Sebastien, Spain, afforded Amy the opportunity to receive one-on-one tutorials with such esteemed painters as Julian Schnabel and Terry Winters. In 2007, she exhibited alongside Bridget Riley and Ralph Steadman at the Medical Foundation for the Victims of Torture charity auction. She has exhibited her work, both as a solo artist and in group shows, widely throughout the UK, as well as undertaking commissions here and abroad. Three of her paintings have recently been acquired for the permanent collection of the charity, Paintings in Hospitals.

Having always been inspired by landscape, Amy’s work sets out to capture sensations through the use of colour relationships, space and movement— the activity of painting being the subject of each work. By combining quick, accidental splashes with slower, more considered compositional choices, the pieces achieve a push-pull relationship. Initially working with the canvas on the floor, paint is poured, squeegeed, and allowed to pool and disperse. Once she is happy with the composition at this more accidental stage, the painting is left to dry. The second phase is a slower, more contemplative stage, where decisions are made regarding colour relationships and compositional balance, painting the ‘background’ in around the earlier splashes of paint. These two distinct ‘paces’ combine to create paintings that are energetic and calm at the same time.

“Fingers Crossed” Oil and acrylic on canvas 60 cm x 60 cm The random diagonals in close colour combinations create a jewel-like pattern in this small painting.

“Criss-Cross” Oil and acrylic on canvas 60 cm x 60 cm

“Fingers and Toes Crossed” Oil and acrylic on canvas 60 cm x 60 cm Another example of working with diagonals to create a faceted, dynamic pattern.

“Crossing Paths” Oil and acrylic on canvas 60 cm x 60 cm

Thomas Strumpel I was born in a place along the Rhine River and then some 20 years later, I studied art in Cologne, a hub for art and artists in Germany at that time. I began with drawings but now my focus is on painting. I work with very diluted watercolours, which I apply multiple layers, until depth is reached in the picture. It creates a subtle colour play. The texture of the canvas is evident and becomes part of the painting. I now live in Zurich, Switzerland. In 2015, Elten & Elten Gallery presented my work for which I enjoyed the exposure.

What can a painter say about his own work? That he lives for it? No! He is painting! He does not have any occupation, his life is his art. He insists on seeing the world as he sees the world. However, the exercise of this right is associated with great effort and struggle. Until you get to the point where you have overcome thinking in the sense that you no longer have to think while painting, but leave it to the painting, which is generally described as intuition. The difficulty lies in standing behind his painting and solving his ego. I can not really substantiate my choice of subject. Pictures and motifs appear and some remain so persistent that they have to become pictures. The colors are laid incessantly over each other and interwoven with each other until the picture has created its own existence. At some point, the picture wants to be left alone. It is finished. Now it can be viewed. Now it can open and connect with the viewer, as long as the image and the viewer are on the same wavelength. Often these viewers see something different in the picture than the artist. This shows that the picture is not only created by the artist himself, but in a space that is bigger than the artist himself. Many of my pictures have been painted from photos from my family album. The question of identity and self-understanding which is the question of the meaning of memory in a person’s life, has been asked here. Does every moment become a memory? What is the past? If anyone reads these lines, likes my work and has a photo that he or she would like me to transform into a painting, then this person should contact me. Right now I am starting a new series of works which I have titled: “The life of others”. For some time now I have started to embed some of my “family photos” in other fields of motifs, and to combine them with mushrooms, plants, stars and other. The work entitled “Piggybacking with mushrooms” is a good example of this.

“Endangered species” 2018 Mixed media on canvas 30 cm x 40 cm

Melanie Wright Melanie lives in the Cotswolds, where her deep affinity with horses and the landscape inform and inspire her paintings. She is well known for her equestrian sporting images in the fields of Racing, Dressage and Polo. Melanie trained as a portrait painter at Heatherleys School of Fine Art in London and carries both her formal portrait painting skills and her endless fascination with depicting movement, spirit and the atmosphere of place, into her artwork. Working in oils, watercolour and drawn media, Melanie’s paintings have been exhibited in London and Oxfordshire and feature in private collections in the USA, Europe and Scandinavia.

For as long as I can remember I have been making art, in the form of drawing and painting. I was born into a family in North Yorkshire, that shared a passion for the countryside, horses and art. Both my grandmothers were art school trained practicing artists. My paternal Grandmother was a gifted watercolour painter, notably of winter landscapes, and my maternal Grandmother was for a time, an illustrator, in London. My Grandfathers were keen riders, and racing enthusiasts, with hunting and polo (in Burma and India) playing a key part in their lives. This background has been an influence on my own creative path, as has the dynamic of enjoying life outdoors, equestrian pursuits and handling horses, balanced with reflective, concentrated periods of study and painting from nature, learning to look and to explore the beauty of the landscape. Following those formative early years, I went to Art School in London. Training firstly as a textile designer and then later as a Fine Art portrait and life painter at Heatherleys School of Art, followed by a History of Art Course at Christies Education. I was particularly drawn to and inspired by artists from the Modern British Period, such as Ivon Hitchens, Paul Nash, John Skeaping and Alfred Munnings. For a number of years I ran a portrait studio and teaching practice in London. After moving away from the city, to North Oxfordshire, in 2008, I reconnected in some ways, through my painting to those early influences and have focused on equestrian painting and landscape subjects ever since. The Cotswolds provide an endlessly rich source of inspiration, offering such a fantastic variety of equestrian sports, and of course the stunning landscapes. Working in oils, watercolour and drawn media (occasionally mixed media), my approach is unashamedly old school. I like to work directly from the subject, wherever and whenever possible, filling sketchbooks with observations, studies and ideas. This approach proved particularly rewarding when ‘Artist in Residence’ at specific locations, such as a racing stables, racetrack, or national park. I relish the opportunity to build a connection over a period of time with both ‘place’ and ‘people’, observing the day to day activities and variety of subject matter, that residencies present. Occasionally, alongside painting for exhibitions, I work to private commission, notably for equine portraiture. My two main category subjects, while being on the face of it, rather different, work both independently and combined in a painting. Much of my landscape painting is carried out spontaneously, on the spot, on a small and intimate scale, through multiple studies. Larger landscape pieces are developed further later on in the studio, away from the subject, with a focus on memory and surface interest. Both ‘equestrian’ and ‘landscape’ provide me with the inner connection and outer movement I am searching for. My aim is to capture the fleeting moment, be it dramatic or meditative in nature. This could be the charge of horses across a polo ground, or around a racetrack, or the shadows of overhead clouds scudding across a valley bringing a rapid change of light and atmosphere. I look for the palpable energy and my own emotional response. And ultimately, this is what I feel compelled to engage with, to continually explore and to create through my art.

“Full Charge Ahead” Mixed media, watercolour, pastel and charcoal on board 57 cm x 81 cm image size Framed in a wide hand finished taupe grey frame with an antique gilt edge detail

‘This polo image is inspired by watching play at Cirencester Polo Club in Gloucestershire. One of my favourite local painting venues. I love to sketch there, where the drama of sport and spectacle contained within the polo ground arena, provides a high key and fast moving dynamic for drawing, as the teams charge, turn and shadow play back and forth across the field.’

Scott McLachlan Born in Scotland, Scott has lived and worked in The Netherlands for over 25 years. Having worked in many disciplines in art and design, he has found oil painting to be one of the most challenging and yet rewarding, since there is always the lure of mastering this powerful medium. As a freelance Product Designer, painting has become a means of leaving the constraints of the job behind, in order to be free to create and experiment with visual story telling of a different kind. Inspiration for his work comes from an early interest in the ‘fantasy’ artworks from the likes of Frank Frazetta and Boris Vallejo and an inquisitive desire to create visual images which can generate an emotional dialogue in the mind of the viewer.

After many years creating ‘fantasy’ artwork inspired by his fantasy art heroes, Scott has turned to more ‘earthly’ subjects and developed his painting style to suit. Living and working in The Netherlands, one cannot help be affected by the great Dutch fine art tradition, but specifically for him, by the visual ‘storytelling’ of the old Dutch masters with their twists and hidden meanings. “ I’m continually trying to capture an evocative or poignant moment in order to stir the emotions of the viewer (and myself), whether it be laughter, curiosity or a tear. I love discussing the paintings since what others perceive in them is often an education in itself!”. His atmospheric paintings offer the viewer a chance to expand on the perceived story within their own mind’s eye, perhaps completing a journey started for them. Scott uses very limited colour palettes to create moody and thought provoking images, which some have commented on as having an almost ‘haunting’ nature. “ I don’t use too realistic or complex colour pallets since, like a black & white photo, I feel there is more drama without”. “ Each work can take weeks to complete, the struggle to create what i’m trying to portray can force me out the studio for days at a time. The sheer joy of creating interest, a discussion or even selling a work get’s me back to the studio again and again, it’s a drug.” Interestingly, one of the most challenging parts of the painting process for Scott is deciding on the composition, to capture the chosen moment in time. “ I sketch up the basis of the concept and develop the painting as I go along, often changing the figures and setting, this makes for an exciting painting trip!”. Scott believes the title of a work is almost as important as the painting itself since it can turn the meaning behind the work on its head. His work can be seen on occasion at small art venues in The Netherlands and he is always open to discuss his work with those interested. (One of the works shown here is dedicated to the Battle of Britain Memorial Trust, and 10% of the sale will go to the trust).

“Into The Light” Oil on canvas 120 cm x 60 cm

“The Neighbour” Oil on canvas 120 cm x 60 cm

Janice Sugg Janice Sugg is a full- time career level artist whose work hangs in public and private collections both nationally and internationally. Primarily a self taught oil painter, she studied at the Loveland Academy. She has exhibited in solo and group shows. Sugg was invited to teach and lecture at the Devonshire Art Center in Illinois. She is represented by Mirada Fine Arts, Indian Hills, CO, Mary Williams Fine Arts, Boulder, CO, Lovetts Gallery, Tulsa, OK and Sorrel Sky Gallery, Durango, CO. Her oil paintings were recently featured in Mountain Living Magazine, and Luxe magazine.

Janice Sugg’s abstract western landscapes experiment with this concept of horizon- austere western prairie bonded with a shifting sky. So much more than just a thin line, her imagery reveals the horizon’s intricate variety in rich layers and unusual colors. In her landscape the horizon twists and turns, rolls and flows like a physical entity. It smudges, it bleeds, it splinters, expands and contrasts, appears and is gone. And yet her horizons are restrained by a quite subtlety that might often go unnoticed; all the consequence of an unaffected invention that results from intuitive strokes on the canvas. Janice Sugg’s painting style incorporates a layering effect. Her method interweaves textures, blending color and a subjective atmosphere within her imagery. She paints using unpredictable palettes-a spectrum of color that often challenges well-worn clichés (the sky is blue, the land is green, etc,). The resulting layers are successively wiped and refined revealing a composite of underlying design- the result of colorful swathes of braided paint unfolding and enfolding the values within her palette. Indeed, her surprising use of colors has become a distinctive attribute of her work. The oil paintings of Janice Sugg occupy a unique position in the genre of Western Landscape. Her concept of Horizon imagery portrays a powerful sense of earth blending with sky. She interleaves textures, blending color and a subjective atmosphere within her imagery. She paints using unpredictable palettes--a spectrum of color that often challenges well-worn clichés (the sky is blue, the land is green...). The resulting layers are successively wiped and refined revealing a composite of underlying design--the result of colorful swathes of braided paint unfolding and enfolding the values within her palette. Indeed, her surprising use of color has become a distinctive attribute of her work.

“Birds Above a Violet Horizon” Oil on canvas 76 cm x 76 cm Oil paint, oil stick, palette knife, and brushstrokes, on gallery wrapped canvas with a 5 cm profile. Finished with archival varnish.

“Spring Meadow with Bird” Oil on canvas 60 cm x 60 cm Oil paint, oil stick, palette knife, and brushstrokes, on gallery wrapped canvas with a 5 cm profile. Finished with archival varnish.

“First Light Birds, Listening” (Diptych) Oil on birch panel 40 cm x 40 cm each Oil paint, oil stick, palette knife, and brushstrokes, on birch panel with a 3.5 cm profile. finished with archival varnish.

Nicholas Coley Nicholas Coley was born in Connecticut in 1971 and raised in Muir Beach, California. He hitch hiked &round the states for a couple years after high school trying to find Don Juan and Carlos Castenada. He was sure he had a destiny to become a medicine man or a brujo, but after getting hepatitis in a hostel in Santa Fe, he moved to Europe and studied art at the Beaux-Arts plus another small school for painting in the south of France. He lived, studied, and meditated daily for a year in a Buddhist Monastery outside of Bordeaux. After reading ‘The tropic of Capricorn’ by Henry Miller, he decided he was not meant for the disciplined, monastic life and went off in search for a more creative and spontaneous world, taking him to Prague for a year and selling paintings to tourists on the Charles Bridge. From there he took the transiberian railroad through Russia and deep into China before having a complete spiritual collapse in the summer of ‘94. The good news is it’s been a slow climb back up the mountain toward the benificenece and belonging of a higher power.

Anchored by the love of a good woman he’s actually been able to support his family, three extraordinary little kids, even putting a downpayment on a house...all exclusively with the proceeds from painting sales, which he’s damn proud of and still sort of in dumb happy shock. For almost 20 years now he has been painting full time, almost everyday. Turns out, he was something of a medicine man after all. My painting has its roots in the fanatical ethos of a small school in the South of France which made Cezanne its figurehead and had a very black and white view of art history. L’ecole Marchutz was a great place to get rooted in a concrete perspective of the fundamentals and a format of painting from real life. Twenty years later, I still paint on location, finding myself in relation to a place and seeking unity with my surroundings. Only now I’ve exchanged the south of France for the open-air nut house that is San Francisco. Coming home to the states and studying art was an ambiguous affair, where pluralism and general creativity replaced the achievements of a rooted tradition. Influences such as Wolf Kahn and other Bay Area figures allowed color theory to take a back seat to a generally looser love of all color and made more of a proclamation with bold brushwork and gestural lines. I looked for compositions with energy and tried to impress the immediacy and rush of painting beside major thoroughfares and in parking lots. More recently the matter of composition has played a prevalent role in my work, as I experiment with less conventional dynamics to arrange the urban and natural environments. For example, in my Market & Pearl Street series, I use the empty asphalt of the street to create a sparse and uncluttered majority of the canvas and forcing detail and subject matter to the periphery. Along the edge I use the darkened, unresolved negative space of a row of cars as its own color field, creating reductive and raw elements of form and a chance to interpret color as broad fields which unifies for a spontaneous, perceptual painting as one might see if blinded by sun. I see no end to the possibilities of painting out in the world. Just stand there long enough until the light shimmers off the pavement, or until you see the comforting pattern of parking meters, the side view mirrors, the shadows under cars. If you love nature enough, you will see it even here, in our urban world.

“House of the American Robin #3” Oil on canvas 121.92 cm x 228.60 cm This painting is in San Francisco’s Presidio, a place I have painted over 1,000 times in the last 12 years and never seem to tire of it. I love the pattern of this dense forest that lends itself to vertical lines and stripes, but also can create play between foreground and background, and light coming through.

Angela Saxon Angela Saxon lives and works in beautiful northern Michigan near Traverse City — surrounded by the spectacular Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore. She received a BFA in painting from Indiana University. Recent painting residencies have included Rome and the Sabina region, Italy; Tuscany and Chianti regions, Italy; Umbria, Italy; Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico; Palm Springs, California; Glen Arbor, Michigan. Her paintings are shown in galleries throughout the US and her work is held in both private and public collections; she also undertakes commissions.

The visual language of landscape is one that we most fundamentally share. Sky, trees, water: these are some of the most basic visual concepts that structure our perception of reality. But for all the commonality in these concrete objects, for each of us the experience of seeing is slightly different, being inevitably inflected by the perception of the observer. As a perceptual painter, Angela translates her observations of nature into a personal dialect of color, shape, line and light, expressive marks that both describe and negate their subject matter. Using this unique language, she is able to evoke more than the landscape in her atmospheric work, imbuing it with added purpose and clarity of vision. Beginning on location, Angela’s process moves from the generation of small plein air paintings or drawings to larger studio work. e multiple steps of interpretation allow her to both capture the immediacy of her ever- shi ing nature settings, and to meditate deeply and constructively on her pieces in the more formal and removed space of the studio. Her work typically moves from a depiction of concrete details into an intensi ed geometry, pushing toward abstracted shapes that are reminiscent of known forms but that have a purpose in the painting other than merely describing that known form. Her visual exploration of the natural world also regularly includes painting from the gure, as well as mixed media collages combining fragments of her drawings and paintings with work from her early childhood to the present. Angela typically works in series, painting through an idea resolution and then making further way forward to a new piece as the outcome of this process. While her painting is direct and confident, she also takes risks regularly and remains open to happy accident and creative chance: the way that a brush full of paint feels its way around the arc of a shoreline, inadvertently dragging bright green through pale blue. Contained in the open space between communication and doubt, Angela’s work is in a constant state of evolution.

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“Sumac and Oregano” Gouache and watercolor crayon 45 cm x 60 cm Engaging with the brilliant colors and textures of the fall foliage in this series

“Dancing Sumac” Gouache and watercolor crayon 45 cm x 60 cm The red leaves of the sumac are the last brilliant color in my landscape

Sarah Jane Brown Sarah Jane Brown lives on the rugged Welsh coast, where her environment, and previous maritime career, have instilled a deep affinity with the sea. She studied ‘Fine Art - Painting’ at the West Wales School of the Arts, graduating with a first class honours degree. Brown’s career as a full time professional artist has steadily gained momentum and recognition and her work now attracts international collectors. She has exhibited widely in the UK, has had many successful solo shows. The artist also recently exhibited with the Royal Society of Marine Artists at the Mall Galleries in London and The Royal Cambrian Academy in North Wales. Sarah combines her knowledge of ‘old master’ techniques with contemporary working practice. Conceptually her paintings are an outpouring of personal feeling and a strong sense of place; using the landscape metaphorically to describe thoughts and emotions.

“Our surroundings form a part of us, they shape our perception and colour our thoughts and ideals. For me they are a vehicle to describe more internal aspects of our physical, emotional and spiritual selves. There is something about being immersed in the vastness of the landscape that gives clarity and focus to the space within. My approach to landscape is therefore introspective and intimate. I enjoy the versatility of oil paint, and find it the best medium to convey the varied sensations of being in the landscape; sometimes calm, restorative, or spiritually uplifting and at other times wild, dynamic, rejuvenating and mentally energising. Oil paint is also equally responsive to my internal thoughts and feelings. I walk the coast path or the beach near my home in Pembrokeshire and absorb; meditative space and light, magical junctures of land, sea and sky, endlessly changing colours, reflections and atmospheric conditions. I know it so well, after years of collecting observations it is ingrained. I photograph, make sketches and painted studies to get the landscape ‘under my skin’. In the studio these observations are transformed, becoming more expressive as I engage with the physicality of painting, sometimes veering towards abstraction. My style is expressive and combines a variety of methods; staining, glazing and blending in many layers, gradually building up thickness and texture. Paint is applied with brushes, knives, rags and sometimes fingers. It is painted, scraped, flicked, spattered and poured on, and sometimes off again, until the finished painting emerges. Titles are deliberately ambiguous. They emerge from phrases that cross my mind whilst I am in the studio or out in the landscape, sometimes they are excerpts from poetry, or are often just snippets of my own windswept thoughts.”

The title and sentiment of this Painting Come from my late Father’s favourite poem (He was a pilot). When the sky is blue and the clouds high, I am always reminded of it... ‘High Flight’ by John Gillespie Magee, Jr Oh! I have slipped the surly bonds of earth, And danced the skies on laughter-silvered wings; Sunward I’ve climbed, and joined the tumbling mirth Of sun-split clouds, --and done a hundred things You have not dreamed of --Wheeled and soared and swung High in the sunlit silence. Hov’ring there I’ve chased the shouting wind along, and flung My eager craft through footless halls of air... Up, up the long, delirious, burning blue I’ve topped the wind-swept heights with easy grace Where never lark or even eagle flew -And, while with silent lifting mind I’ve trod The high un-trespassed sanctity of space, Put out my hand, and touched the face of God.

“A hundred things you have not dreamed of ” Oil On Canvas 102 x 80 cm (Framed: 117 x 105 cm)

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Emma Davis Emma davis lives and works in London. With an MA degree in Literature and in Fine Art, Emma studied at the Slade School of Fine Art, Chelsea College of Art and the University of York, she recently returned to Antibes as Artist in Residence. In 2016, she was selected for the London Creative Network, and took part in the London Intensive (Slade School of Fine Art and Camden Arts Centre), and was shortlisted the ArtSlant International Prize.

Emma Davis is a writer and a visual artist, always torn between semiotic means. Led into abstraction because of what she felt to be a political oddness in painting naked women, she is greatly influenced by Howard Hodgkin, as well as by Japanese block prints and Chinese pottery. She works across a variety of media, including oils, watercolour, etchings, monoprints and pencil on paper, but all of her work really relates to drawing, an activity she finds somehow intimate. An avid traveller herself, she draws a lot on public transport, or at galleries and concerts, where people are lost in their own thoughts, their private worlds on public display, absorbed and unselfconscious. Etching makes the drawings easier to read, more permanent, more finished. Davis often adds text to her works, making reference to what is in her head, what an image suggests to her, or what sensation is conjured. The act of drawing slows her down, allowing her to access her thoughts more directly. Similarly, her watercolours are mainly about the effect and meaning of line – an abstract quality but one that refers back to pictographic languages and calligraphy. Her palettes are intense, reflecting heat, a jangle of colours reacting to one other. – Anna McNay

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“Swan Lake White” Graphite, charcoal, acrylic on paper 29 cm x 21 cm “Swan Lake White will be exhibited this month from 16 – 30 May in ‘Unspoken’ curated by Sweet’Art at The Stash Gallery, Vout-OReenee’s, 30 Prescot Street, London, E1 8BB from 6-11pm”

“Swan Lake Blue” Graphite, charcoal, acrylic on paper 21 cm x 14 cm “These works are part of a series concerned with the idea of veils, layers, secret languages and what is hidden.”

Gina Love After growing up in Stroud, and studying Fine Art Painting at University, I moved to Bristol in 2004. My practice currently explores a pre-occupation with superficial beauty. My artwork seeks to both represent and interpret superficial aesthetics, the poignancy of our environments and impact of the disturbed. Complex thought patterns are replicated and explored through colour, and the impasto technique. I have exhibited in Bath, Bristol, the Cotswolds and London. I am also working with Gallerique in Chicago who discovered my paintings on Instagram.

We’re all aware of the stereotype of a tortured artists, and I definitely embody this spirit. I developed this mind-set from a young age after being bullied throughout school. I would say that for most of my life I have never felt like I fitted in. In fact, I would say I have quite an odd perspective on the world. I have suffered with Depression and Anxiety for a long time, and my studio practice allows me to deal with these thought processes. This, and the constant struggle against society’s ‘norm’ is at the core of my practice. I have a preoccupation with exploring notions of beauty and superficial aesthetics and how the environments we occupy can disturb us. I often get asked how a painting begins. I go obsessive phases with colour and mark making. I can often wake up with a vision at 5am and have to head to the studio. I mix my own paint, use gesso, plaster, create triptychs and feel that my paintings over time have become almost sculptural.Alongside a variety of brushes and pallet knives, you’ll often find me using hairbrushes, cutlery, credit cards, combs, coat hangers, and branches of wood to add texture and to scratch through layers of colour. I enjoy taking an object and giving it another purpose. The process of developing an image can be hyperactive, obsessive, and meticulous but it is always therapeutic. I normally work on more than one piece at once, partly to pacify the need for perfection in one painting, but also because mark making can become more intense and stretch beyond the size of one canvas.

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“You can’t get everything you want” Mixed media on canvas 60 cm x 90 cm New painting from my Spring collection 2018. Exploring finding calm and happiness

“We are clouds” Mixed media on canvas 60 cm x 90 cm Painting my from my summer collection 2017. Exploring coping amongst grief following the death of my grandmother

Evi Antonio Evi Antonio was born in London and spent her adolescent years enveloped by an urban landscape. She dreamt of the countryside and found solace by immersing herself in the images of natural history books. This fascination with the natural world was cultivated during her teenage years and further refined as she studied Scientific and Natural history Illustration, graduating with a BA (Hons) degree in 1992. It was also at this time, Evi discovered her love for the sea when she visited a remote bird island off of the Pembrokeshire coast on a residential drawing trip. This island visit would go on to inspire and greatly impact her future work.

After graduating, Evi worked for many years as a natural history illustrator contributing to several publications using traditional watercolour techniques. She went on to run a successful illustration agency alongside her husband from their studio in a nature reserve. Evi’s dream of living in the countryside was finally realised and she was able to immerse herself in her surroundings and further develop her love and work of natural history. After raising their two children, Evi made the decision to transition into fine arts where she could fully express her artistic potential. In 2012, she was accepted and exhibited in the Royal Academy Summer Exhibition where her entire edition of ‘Jono’s lobster’ sold. Following the success of this, her first solo show ‘Cimychiaid Jono’ was an exhibition of works inspired by the sea life of the Pembrokeshire coast and her collaboration with a local fisherman, ‘Jono’. From 2013, Evi’s work was motivated by emotive and spiritual experiences in her life. Loosing her father made a big impact on the themes she started exploring. One of these themes led to her winning an award in 2016 for ‘Best artist in the East of England’ for her painting ‘Papillon de nuit’’ with the National Open Art competition. Evi lives and works between her studio in the Essex countryside, Pembrokeshire and London. Since returning to the city, she is enjoying her new found perspective and looking forward to incorporating this appreciation into her future work. “Look deep into nature and then you will understand everything better”. Albert Einstein A philosophy close to my creative vision. Often as a child, I would stop and look at the moss growing on a stone or the intricate details of lichen on a twig while others walked by. My art celebrates the smaller things that often go unnoticed or are appreciated merely for their culinary or decorative values. My artistic vision is to inspire those who see my work to look more carefully at the natural world around them, see its hidden beauty and consider their worth in our ever fragile and vanishing ecosystems. All of nature inspires me but reoccurring themes reflect my passion for the sea and entomology. With an obsessive eye for detail and composition, the symmetrical forms, colours and textures of insects and crustaceans excite me. To express this vision, I have mixed old traditions with new. Digital painting techniques have enabled me to work on a much larger scale and resulting in a contemporary edge. Merging this with traditional hand painting, furthers adds aesthetic qualities and depth. The result is as if we see the subject under a magnifying glass; I want to evoke and inspire the viewer with my sense of awe and wonder and to look closer at these creatures that we share our world with.

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“Kings swallowtail” 87 cm x 70 cm x 5 cm (framed) Digital painting, printed on fine art canvas and hand glazed in oils and varnish. From a limited edition of 10.

“Peacock swallowtail” 87 cm x 70 cm x 5 cm (framed) Digital painting, printed on fine art canvas and hand glazed in oils and varnish. From a limited edition of 10.

“Goliath Beetle” 92 cm x 71 cm x 5 cm (framed)

“Rhinoceros Beetle” 92 cm x 71 cm x 5 cm (framed)

Digital painting, printed on fine art canvas and hand glazed in oils and varnish. From a limited edition of 2.

Digital painting, printed on fine art canvas and hand glazed in oils and varnish. From a limited edition of 2.

The #Bitcoin Bubble Is Caused By The Halo Effect One of the causes of the Bitcoin bubble is a cognitive bias known as the Halo Effect. I will explain how this works and how it is going to prove very expensive for holders of Bitcoin. The Halo Effect occurs when people judge the overall quality of an item or person by considering only a single property of that item. This can lead to dramatic errors; most obviously when all of the other qualities of the item are negative or highly questionable. This I will argue here is one causal factor among several which have caused novice investors to buy Bitcoin. When it crashes, they will lose all of their money. They will be unable to exit the market because the power of the cognitive bias is too strong. The Halo Effect was first seen in data about personality assessment in the military. It was found that officers asked to rate their subordinates would in fact rely on a single criterion, and then assume that all other relevant factors were correlated with that one criterion. This is obviously dramatically false unless all of the other variables are correlated with the one assessed. And that is highly unlikely to be true. Many people are unable to distinguish Bitcoin from the blockchain. This leads many of the novice investors who are buying Bitcoin to fail to distinguish between the two claims “I am buying Bitcoin” and “I am investing in blockchain technology.” The blockchain is a distributed ledger system which offers transparent recording of transactions (or any data) without the backing of any central authority. It is an extremely interesting technology which holds great promise. It could, for example, be used to create corruption-resistant property ledgers. That would be of great benefit, not least in combatting money laundering. Bitcoin is termed a “cryptocurrency” even though it does not fulfil the roles of a currency in that it is not readily convertible and it is not a stable store of value. It is used to reward the miners who maintain the blockchain on a widely dispersed set of servers. However, it is clear that the blockchain and Bitcoin are not identical. An objection has been attempted here by a Bitcoin proponent that it is not possible to have a blockchain without a cryptocurrency. There are a number of readings of that, but on the obvious two, the claim is either false, or true but misleading. If the claim is read as “you cannot run blockchain code without also generating a cryptocurrency” then it is false. There is no reason why the blockchain code could not be run with the cryptocurrency elements redacted. If the claim is read as “it is necessary to compensate the miners, ” then it is true. However, the miners could be paid in $. Or the blockchain could run in the cloud, or in many clouds. That would carry some costs, but this is not a problem. It would even be possible to compensate the miners in a cryptocurrency which was pegged against the $. There is no need for the cryptocurrency to appreciate and definitely not to gyrate wildly. I therefore conclude that the objection fails. There is one positive property that Bitcoin possesses. It is true that it is generated using the blockchain technology. It is also true that the blockchain technology is extremely interesting, and being pursued widely by a number of serious players. By contrast, no professional, experienced or institutional investor is holding Bitcoin. Novice investors fall prey to the Halo Effect when they think that the one positive quality of Bitcoin is a measure of its overall quality, when in fact it has no other redeeming features at all. This will prove to be a very expensive cognitive bias when the Bitcoin crash comes. I discuss the effects of cognitive biases like the Halo Effect in my new book — see facing page

This book is the first to demonstrate the practical implications of an important, yet under-considered area of psychology in helping traders and investors understand the biases and attribution errors that drive unpredictable behaviour on the trading floor. Readers will improve their chances of trading successfully by learning where cognitive biases lead to errors in stock analysis and how these biases can be used to predict behaviour in market participants.

The Discerner Art Publication - May 2018