Annabel Mednick - Artist - Paintings, Portraits, CommissionsAnnabel Mednick - Artist - Paintings, Portraits, Commissions


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In Nov/Dec08/Jan 2009, I am showing my work at Pin Mill Studios, near Ipswich, and at the Buckenham Gallery in Southwold.

Since 2006, I have been chair of Key Arts an artist-led group, at the moment based at St Mary at the Quay, Key Street, Ipswich, in the heart of the exciting dockside development.

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St Mary's - is a large, beautiful, and crumbling old disused church. Key Arts is supported by The Churches Conservation Trust, Ipswich Borough Council, Turnstone and, of course, its members.

Our aim is to assist artists who live in the local area of Ipswich and the region in their work, providing a much needed space where artists can meet and exchange ideas through exhibitions, events and talks. It is a place where artists and the community can come together - sharing in the creative opportunity that Key Arts offers.

We are an artist-led group. That means contributors who want to influence our activities, or lead new ones, are invited to make their suggestions.

In 2006 I had a residency at St Mary’s. I found that my experience far exceeded my expectations. For a week I immersed myself in the shadows and moods of this large beautiful and imposing space, exploring in paint on cotton sheets and canvas, its spaces, light and contrasts. The subtle hues and surprising chalky pinks of the walls that have changed and softened over the years giving a warmth and new identity to this possibly austere empty building.

I wanted a little time to try some new things out, use some new materials, earth, plaster, emulsion paint. I found ways of incorporating my experiments into my practice that I am sure will expand and inspire me well into the future.

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I always work from the model as part of my practice, often weekly. I like the subtle changes of light, the delicacy of tones, the tiny observations that build the drawing or painting.

When exploring gestural poses I like the rapid marks that capture the immediacy and dynamic of the form. I use these studies when painting from photographs to recreate a moment in time.

For a time I and a number of other women artists met upstairs at a café on Tuesday mornings (a vital link when you work on your own) and although we don’t meet as regularly we still have diverse thematic exhibitions from time to time. Usually at the attic gallery in the Ancient House in Ipswich. We have had four exhibitions for Ip-art. (An arts festival in Ipswich) And expect to have another for 2009.

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For our first exhibition in the Ancient House I was inspired by the fabulous drawings on the walls and doors that you can see in one of the little rooms. I also became interested in the works on linen that they discovered there, the reproductions of which strike you as you walk up the stairs. Combining those strange images and those of Botticelli I decided to work on large drawings with red chalks and develop them on muslin.

In my work I try to capture the intensity and flow of the fleeting moment and the play of the light and here, as light streams through the window the drawing on the fabric becomes transparent. It gently moves with the flow of movement almost disappearing, leaving the faint tracings on the paper on the floor seemingly more solid and real.

I am also a member of Creative Freelance, an association of creative freelance professionals based in and around Ipswich. We worked on a carefully nurtured collaborative book project by 17 Creative-Freelance members (plus an honorary 18th: our book-binder, Dan Wray) called blankpage, this is a handmade book containing pages in paper, glass, fabric, collage, wax and plastic, and was the result of several months collaboration by members of Freelance.

The book was launched at a Private View on Friday 25 June, 2004 in The China Room, Christchurch Mansion, Ipswich, UK. The Web version of /blankpage was also launched on 25th June 2004 and remains available on the Creative Freelance web sit.

Click to enlarge   Is it empty or is it a possibility?
I love the idea of potential.
What is behind the veil?
What might be bubbling just under the surface.
Start with just an impression.
A thumb print.
A whisper.
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These paintings were created for a show in 2003 at the Market Cross Gallery in Bury St Edmunds called Twisted.

These paintings depict the figure twisting and dancing in space and time — with gesture and form you can examine the areas of life that have no words. I have used a triptych format showing three figures — a girl, a pregnant woman and an older woman each representing three ages of 'man' or the three graces. The separate canvasses indicate how, while we go through life alone, we are nevertheless linked to our past and future selves, and to the world about us. The format and the use of blue echo the timelessness of the renaissance.

"My overall theme is the strong and positive view of women; so my pregnant woman is dancing, full of vitality and power; not passive and waiting, but active and creative.

My older woman is moving full of life, strong and sensual, as I perceive those around me to be.

And my girl spins and turns enjoying the free feeling of growing. An exploratory, inquisitive and intelligent girl."

They were shown again at a solo show in 2004 at the The Artists Gallery, Ipswich 2004 (Solo show) and again at Galerie St Fiacre, Nantes, France, 2004.

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