Artist Statement 2015

Beverley at the Royal Academy

Beverley Fry

Painting has defined my life for over thirty years.

While painting directly from life most challenges me, my foundation is drawing, whether it is for a portrait, a life study, or a quick sketch-book pen and wash about town.

For those quick sketches years of experience pays off, since my focus has to be receptive, sensitive and alert. That enables me to absorb the essence of what I see, which I then interpret to make a work of art.

Some of these images recently have been used to illustrate public events, e.g. the Southbank Centre's Poetry Celebrations commemorating The Festival of Britain.

Unlike taking a photograph, oils involve a longer process. Where a camera's image reveals a second in time, an oil painting involves hundreds if not thousands of observations. These result in decisions, marks laid down on paper or canvas, sometimes over weeks or months.

I ran a studio gallery for thirteen years in Shropshire and have had many exhibitions in the U.K. and abroad. I need to always progress as an artist, so I have taken time out to study life painting in London at Sydney Studios. My inspirational tutor is Andy Pankhurst, who was a pupil of Euan Uglow at The Slade School.

I am self-taught in watercolour and with many years of practice have achieved a high degree of expertise.

I enjoy watercolour painting for its spontaneous vitality, freshness and luminous qualities especially with flower and still life subjects.

This is very different from oil painting, where I become totally absorbed in its plasticity, depth of colour and subtle strength.

I paint a broad range of figurative subjects. With still life, flowers and interiors I often aim to capture a timeless stillness. Painting portraits inspire and fascinate me. I want to express the wonder, dignity and uniqueness of being human, and what it is about us that is loveable, beautiful, curious and compelling.

My work shows what I witness and need to express as a painter.

It is my imaginative, selective interpretation of what I see with my eyes, my thoughts, my feelings and these synthesize, travel to my hands and into the paint on my brush and fingertips. I want understand and to share a vision that is personal and deeply moving.

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