Two Approaches to Landscape
Journeys through landscape are at the heart of the work of both Anna Boss and Elaine Jones. Both artists create paintings that are atmospheric, sensitive and that tap into our emotional response to place. However, whilst the starting point for Anna and Elaine may be similar their paintings each offer something quite different to the viewer.
The most notable difference between Anna and Elaine’s work is the level of abstraction. On the face of it Elaine’s paintings appear to be more abstract and Anna’s more representational. However, it is the way in which the varying levels of abstraction affect our perception of the paintings as viewers that is particularly interesting.
Anna’s mixed media paintings draw us in, immersing us in the landscape. We find ourselves at ground level, on a path surrounded by tall grasses or on a riverbank watching as the rain rolls in. A narrative begins to unfold and we are in the midst of it, hoping to catch a glimpse of what’s around the next corner. Anna’s paintings often depict landscapes of the British countryside, from the rolling chalk hills of Wiltshire to the meandering River Frome; these are familiar scenes and there is an immediate sense of shared experience.
Middle Down | 20.3x20.3cm | Mixed Media | Anna Boss
Watermill Way | 30.5x30.5cm | Mixed Media | Anna Boss
In contrast Elaine’s oil paintings have the ability to transport us somewhere else, somewhere otherworldly and ethereal, somewhere we may never have been before. It can be more complicated to place ourselves within Elaine’s paintings, as the space is more ambiguous. The comparative lack of familiarity allows us to get swept into the vibrant colours and feel of the landscape rather than it’s specific location or narrative.
To the Beach | 60x60cm | Oil | Elaine Jones
Headland South Hams | 80x80cm | Oil | Elaine Jones
Although both artists are documenting their time in the landscape through painting, their focus back in the studio is subtly different. The emphasis in Anna’s work is on finding ways to use layers of acrylic paint and resin to describe the atmosphere, weather and quality of light that she experienced in the landscape, and in so doing she is connecting us as viewers to that particular passage of time.
Ebbesborne Wake | 20.3x20.3cm | Mixed Media
Elaine is interested in pulling the landscape out of the painting process itself. Whilst the inspiration for her most recent body of work came from the landscape and coastline around Salcombe, this is just a starting point and each piece goes through many stages of development and obliteration before reaching its final form. Seemingly the act of painting enables Elaine to subconsciously distill the essence or rhythm of a particular location onto the canvas, providing much more than just a visual representation of the place; these are landscapes that are felt as well as seen.
Fields Behind Salcombe | 80x80cm | Oil
We’re looking forward to exhibiting Anna and Elaine’s fantastic landscape paintings at Fresh Contemporary Art Fair in Cheltenham (27 -29 April). Get in touch for tickets to the fair and subscribe to our mailing list to keep up to date with all our latest news.