There is something particularly exciting and rewarding when you know you have set eyes on a new and talented artist. Luckily, Annabel Playfair lives only ten minutes from my door and when she mentioned that she had a new body of work festooned around her house I was curious – I had heard good reports.
How taken aback I was to see dazzling painting after painting on the walls, with an exuberance and obvious joy for immediate surroundings ! There was a natural assurance about her canvasses wrapped up with a strong colour sense and use of form. Notoriously hard to impress, I took no time at all to invite her to exhibit, and here we are staging Annabel’s second solo exhibition at Fosse.
Annabel is no newcomer, she was classically trained over five years at the City of Guilds in London, Chelsea Art School and Les Beaux Arts in Paris. Having brought up four children she started painting again in earnest and her confidence and artistic maturity have rapidly developed along with her reputation and fan base.
Annabel’s new collection of work is all about light, colour and shadow, inspired by the 2016 exhibition at the Royal Academy, Painting the Modern Garden : from Monet to Matisse. It was there she discovered Sorolla, the Spanish Master of Light, whom she has come to admire so much.
“ What drives me when I start a new painting is the form of my subject matter, whether it be a lemon, a gnarled trunk of an olive tree or the shapes and lines of a lavender field, together with the ever- changing light creating shadows, patterns and reflections, and above all, the intensity of colour”. Another natural development has come with the evolution of her interior painting : “ A new departure for me and something I have always been keen to try. It started with my landscapes and the desire to humanise a subject rather than avoid the human form ; to make them the focus of the overall painting. It has opened doors to my emotive side and I am excited by the challenge “.
From the fields of sunflowers and lavender in Provence, the seascapes of North Cornwall, the terraced lemon and olive groves in Majorca, to the bluebell woods around Annabel’s home on the edge
of the Cotswolds , this exhibition demonstrates the wide range of ideas that has inspired this very painterly painter and I like that !
Sharon Wheaton 2019
UK art exhibition at Fosse Gallery
Private View: Sunday 8th September 2019
11.00am - 4.00pm
The Exhibition continues until: Thursday 3rd October 2019
[please click image for larger view]
Oil on Canvas
30 x 40 inches