Exhibition | Contrasting Environments | Contemporary Art at Artizan Gallery | Torquay | Art Week

Contrasting Environments

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Tuesday, 8 June 2021 to Saturday, 19 June 2021
Saturday, 5 June 2021 -
6:00pm to 8:00pm

Artists Sue Williamson and Sarah Morris are worlds apart in the subjects that they paint and print, and yet the works in their new show “Contrasting Environments” are rewardingly complementary and coherent, taking audiences on a cross-continent journey from the sharp city lines of Stockholm, to Venice’s shimmering canal reflections, all the way to the rural coastal fields of Devon.

Artizan Gallery welcomes this stunning two woman show from the accomplished pair of Devon artists, whose artistic explorations are found exclusively in their experiences of the landscapes they pass through. It is this emphasis on experience that binds the work, whilst the subjects, with Sue’s focus on urban and built environments and Sarah’s on more rural plains, offer pleasing juxtapositions of subject matter and scene.

“Our individual interests in landscape are very complementary and our creative intentions, and to some extent practices, have similarities. Each of us is striving to say something of our responses to places that are of significant importance to our experiences, and which inspire the need to communicate and involve the viewer in the journey.” Sue Williamson

At first glance, the similarities may appear to end here. Buildings, streets, windows, landmarks, crowd into view from all sides in Sue’s surreal scenes, with stairways to nowhere, space becoming object, reflection reality. Meanwhile Sarah’s works fall off the edge of the raw edges of her canvas area, bold blocks of colour that see her hills role away and skies expand indefinitely out of view.

But Sue goes onto explain that there is more in their practice that binds them than splits them, “Within the two different disciplines, we each explore the language of colour in similar ways in that extensive layering of colour is fundamental to how we each explore surface and depth to define ideas and realize intentions.”

Sue’s paintings emerge from first-hand experiences of her travels to European cities and towns. Her intentions are to recall the visual and emotional experiences of time spent exploring these urban environments. Observations are recorded in the form of drawings and photographs, and through deconstruction, juxtaposing and layering of her subject matter her intentions are to recreate residual memories and evoke sensations of the passage of time when moving through architectural spaces, with colour, light, volume, and space form the backbone of her visual language.

Sarah specializes in woodcuts, all of which are printed by hand using a wooden spoon and rollers, allowing better control on the printed areas. Working with wood allows her to control depth and intensity, building layer upon layer of rich colours. Though the works are prints, the methodology is more painterly, and the resulting images are one-offs, each woodcut unique, a reflection of the ever-changing landscapes which serve as her inspiration.

She is a keen cyclist and when out riding has been inspired by the vivid, bright, and often stark nature surrounding her. Colour is an integral part of her work, as she seeks to reflect the richness of these landscapes and many of the woodcuts are abstracts of the vistas she rides through on the moors and her locale.


Curator ( Name ):

Artist ( Description ): 

Sue Williamson:

Urban and Metropolitan Landscape


My work is about looking, contemplating, and absorbing a sense of place and time and the evocation of fragmented memories and experiences. Urban and metropolitan environments are my source of interest and inspiration.


My focus is upon translating personal experiences of places I have spent time in, and recreating them pictorially with the intention of conveying sensations of moving around architectural spaces, from interior to exterior and from varying vantage points.


The interplay between light and shadow that occurs throughout the day; the highlighting of shape, form, and pattern; the subtlety and drama of colour changes brought about by fluctuating light on surface; these are the components of my work.


I begin from firsthand experiences and support my evolving ideas with reference to my drawings and photographs, as well as the strong evocative memories and sensations of my subject matter. These I explore both on the canvas and through a series of sketchbook drawings as my work develops. Colour. light and form and space are at the core of my interest.


This collection of paintings are a selection from pre lockdown years, 2018 and 2019 when travel was possible, and also a selection of the pieces I have made during the confinement and limitations of 2020 /21. The impact of the restricted life of lockdown has driven me to look much more closely at my domestic environment and my locale. Living in a coastal town has challenged my creative processes and the daily routine of walking and studying what is close by, has been the catalyst for a series of railway inspired paintings, some of which are included in this exhibition.


Sarah Morris:

I have been a printmaker for about thirty five years having trained in Newcastle and at the Royal College of Art. I specialise in woodcuts, all of which are printed by hand, as oppose to a printing press, resulting in singular works.


Working with wood allows me to control the depth and intensity of the print, building layer upon layer of rich colour. Colour is an integral part of my work , as I seek to reflect the richness of the landscapes around me.


I am a keen cyclist and when out riding have been inspired by the vivid, bright and often stark nature surrounding me. My woodcuts are abstracts of the vistas I ride through on the moors and my locale.


The work is hand printed using a wooden spoon and rollers, which allows better control on the printed areas.Though the works are prints, my methodology often feels painterly and the resulting images are one-offs. Each work is unique in its own way and this too, reflects the ever-changing landscapes which serve as my inspiration.


Venue ( Name ):

Venue ( Address ): 

Artizan Gallery

7 Lucius Street




Other shows from Artizan Gallery

Butterfly Blake and Bong-Tree
06/29/2021 to 07/17/2021
Fire Water Stone
06/29/2021 to 07/17/2021
Contrasting Environments
06/08/2021 to 06/19/2021
Chelston in Lockdown - A Sleeping Beauty
10/20/2020 to 10/31/2020



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