Coloured Light

2016

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The Imagined Garden
Oil on board


The Imagined Sculpture
Oil on board 54 x 63cm

In those still moments of bare wakefulness, just outside sleep, the brain can create dream-like images. With no conscious direction a picture pops into consciousness. Usually such visual thoughts are fleeting and insignificant, insufficient to grasp and make much of. Sometimes a firmer image is created and can be retained, thought about, mulled over and thus recorded in memory. So was it with both ‘The Imagined Garden’ and ‘The Imagined Sculpture’. They demonstrate that at least in part, creativity is the spontaneous working of the unconscious mind.

The Imagined Tree
Oil on board

The image arose as a mind pop or involuntary semantic memory, a large oak in flat, sunny, grassland, perhaps a park, with a backdrop of other trees. The mind’s image, whilst clear, was insufficient to create a painting from so I searched the internet for images of oak trees and quickly found one that was a close match. This formed the basis of the painting. It was pretty much completed in one afternoon, oil on plywood board, with a limited palette of white, cerulean blue, sap green, chrome yellow and burnt umber.


The Bridge Inn
Oil on board 56 x 63 cm

J.M.W. Turner went on a tour of Yorkshire and Cumbria in 1816. He painted this scene, ‘Hornby Castle from Tatham Church’. The Bridge Inn still exists and a very nice pub it is too. The bridge was demolished and rebuilt after Turner painted it to make way for a railway, but the railway has, in its turn, also gone. By the time I sketched the view, 200 years after Turner, the cow and milkmaid had left the scene, but I put them in anyway.


Chapel-in-the-Dale and Ribblehead Viaduct
Oil on board 56 x 63 cm

The little church at Chapel-in-the-Dale a is a few miles from the Ribblehead Viaduct but this is where about two hundred workers who died building the railway are buried. The church has a memorial to the railway workers. I've brought graveyard and viaduct closer together. J.M.W.Turner had painted church in 1816 but the viaduct was not built till the 1880s so he never had the opportunity.


Church, Lancashire
Oil on board


Sweeping up
Oil on board


Ballet Dancers
Oil on board


Walk in the Snow
Oil on board


Fraser Spiral
Oil on board 56 x 63 cm

The Fraser Spiral, also known as the False spiral or twisted cord illusion is an optical illusion that was first described by the British psychologist Sir James Fraser in 1908. The overlapping black arc segments appear to form a spiral but are actually a series of concentric circles. The illusion is produced by combining a regular line pattern of circles with misaligned parts, the orange, red and yellow areas. The illusion is augmented by the spiral components in the chequered background.


Butterflies
Oil on board 91 x 91 cm

Thirty one British butterflies, painted at 3.5x scale.


Homeless in Hereford
Oil on board 61 x 91 cm

Early morning, the rough sleepers meet up, exchange news and the first drinks of the day. They look out for each other, a caring micro-community, while others move through the same space, each in their own world. I wonder what the driver of the Porsche did to get his money.


Urania
Oil on board 22 x 32 cm

From a wall painting The Old House, Hereford, built in the 17th century. Urania was an ancient Greek goddess, the muse of astronomy.


Blue Vase
Oil on board 22 x 27 cm


A Place Where a Lot of Thinking has Happened
Oil on board 51 x 61

At Dartington Hall, a couple of blokes talking earnestly, one of them looking rather like Alan Rushbridger, who used to be editor of the Guardian. A woman had just walked by with two small children. She explained to them that this was a place where a lot of thinking had happened. She was right and it is still happening.


The Red Key
Oil on board 25 x 31 cm

A mind pop. No explanation but the stair might have been influenced by a Basil Beattie exhibition we went to at MIMA, Middlesborough earlier in the year.


Kentmere Cottage
Oil on board 45 x 60 cm


Razor-wire
Oil on board 45 x 60 cm

Based on a photo published in Der Spiegel on 3rd of March 2016. The caption read: “With countries across the Balkans now severely restricting the number of refugees they are allowing to cross their borders, the Balkan Route is all but closed off. The result has been a huge backup in Greece. Here, refugees demonstrate behind a fence on the Greek border with Macedonia."


Wir Sind
Oil on board 55 x 42 cm

We have not come for your money. We are fleeing from your bombs


Arrival
Oil on board 45 x 60 cm

This painting was based on a photo by Achilleas Zavallis published by UNHCR. Fearful children are carried to safety by rescuers in control of the immediate situation. Their longer term future is unknown.


Waiting
Oil on board 38 x46 cm

A photo by Marko Djurica for Reuters and published in The Observer in January 2017 provided the inspiration for this painting of refugees queuing for food in Belgrade.


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Biff Vernon

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