This selection of paintings is inspired by the idea of light in history. Some of the works are tonal renditions of old master paintings selected for their specific qualities of light. They include works by Turner, Rubens and Constable. Other paintings were taken from memories of different types of light, for example Daylight or Orange Night in the Reeds. In this series of works Emson found that removing colour from paintings and limiting the palette to black and white helped emphasize the tonal qualities of light in her work.
Later different types of light were brought back into the work: peachy light and blue light as can be seen in the large paintings such as in Visiting the Spirit of Barnaby Jones. Although inspired by paintings from the past, each piece became its own and often developed individual imagery based on the present and her response to the painting during the process of making. This can be seen for example in the large charcoal landscape piece, Landscape Smoking.
The scale of the various works is based on the artistís response to the process of making and owning. Looking at so many beautiful old master works Annabel Emson became aware of the desire to possess these pieces, to keep them, or parts of them that inspired her. The miniature paintings began from this desire to be able to carry a work of art in oneís bag or pocket, to keep it with you wherever you go. Emson chose the size and shape as they were similar to the postcards that one would buy of the old paintings that carried the sense of light she was trying to capture.
The large paintings became similarly interesting in that their scale enabled Emson to be in them while making them, surrounded visually by their experience.
Annabel Emson (b. 1975) studied at Chelsea College of Art and Design and completed her Masters in Fine Art at Slade College of Fine Art, London. Her work is currently held in a number of private international collections including the Saatchi Collection, Museum De Fundatie, Beth De Woody, Berger Collection, and the Gmurzynska Gallery Private Collection. She has exhibited in London (Kenny Schachter Projects and Ibid Projects), Los Angeles (Marine Contemporary), Switzerland (Gallery Gmurzynska), Mallorca (Cían Marques Museum), Spain (Castellon Museum), Venice (Print Museum).
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