It has been 4 years since my last solo exhibition at Osborne Samuel Gallery. Re-reading the catalogue essays and contributions re-affirm the central motivation, inspiration and processes within my work. To be honest, it is very difficult to write a new artists statement, however one important difference for the work being exhibited here in 2019 is the addition of three new west coasts. In 2015 all of my work was driven by my relationship with the West Wales coastline of Pembrokeshire, 186 miles of National Park coastline. ‘Place’ had already ceased to be just a landscape, I had worked this area for nearly 30 years. I knew it well, yet also every time I walked and drew, it was like starting all over again. It allowed me to connect and contemplate consciousness and the refraction of self.
This current exhibition of paintings introduces a new relationship with the west coast of Iceland, the west coast of Ireland and the west coast of California, three remarkably different experiences. I cannot change who I am as a painter and what it is that
centrally draws me to the need and passion to make paintings; but a new palette has emerged alongside a shift in the balance between the abstract and the figurative. If anything, these new paintings enjoy a stronger correspondence with scale, space and
the poetic; and therefore, the figurative.
Flourish is simply the celebration of the incredible algae growth, trentapohlia, on the Monterey Cyprus trees in Point Lobos Nature Reserve; Sing presents the canopy of trees offering glimpses of the waterlily ponds at Bosherston in West Wales; Twilight engages the eye in a virtual squint as one struggles to focus through lichen growth under the burning Californian sun; and Fizzle oozes the spindrift tide rolling up the wet reflective Irish shoreline. New paintings, new places and travels which continue to inspire a desire to make paintings that allow thought itself to breathe.
Brendan Stuart Burns, 2019