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Colin Halliday - En Plein Air - GX Gallery

Summer Hedgerow by Colin Halliday

Exhibition preview

GX Gallery is presenting an exhibition of new works by the landscape painter Colin Halliday and it will be on display from April 26 to May 15, 2014.

Ranging from petite studies to expansive canvases, the paintings on display show a painter whose work has developed over the years, with particular growth in the last few months.

Made across the last year, the works are responses to the landscapes encountered in Derbyshire and around the UK.

From the tree-lined rivers leading to stone walled fields and kingly oaks to the expansive valleys of Cumbria, these are startlingly beautiful canvasses which merge the triumphs of 20th Century abstraction with the splendour of the British Landscape.

Halliday was born and brought up in Carlisle where he studied Foundation in Fine Art and then a BA. He moved to London but is now living in Derbyshire. It was in the wake of his move from the city that he began to focus on landscapes – with a series of work devoted to the surroundings of his Cumbrian studio and the Lake District.

Looking back to earlier urban scenes capturing the city and industry, often compared to that of Turner, was a sign off what was to come – merging a virtuoso handling of paint with an evocative capturing of place.

Like Claude Monet before him, Halliday paints impasto scenes ‘plein air’ – allowing him to deconstruct and reconstruct the original landscapes with increasing confidence. Be it in his brooding storm clouds or light lyrical landscapes, he succeeds in capturing something of the particularity of the depicted place whilst pointing towards something more universal. These are not portraits of a particular scene so much as meditations upon our experience of place in general.

The canvases are alive with a broad range of marks and gestures – our focus drawn between the poetic scenes and the array of marks from which they are rendered, between representation and abstraction. Here we see Halliday processing a broad range influence, from painters like Vincent Van Gogh or Lucian Freud and Edward Seago through to colourists like Samuel John Peploe and Wolf Kahn. These are canvasses alive with visual incidence.

This most recent body of work sees Halliday working on an unprecedented scale and with an increasingly vivid sense of gesture. Pursuing exciting new formats and challenges, the exhibition promises to reveal the excitement that a new generation of painters have to offer the venerable tradition of landscape painting.

Gallery Hours: Monday to Saturday, 9:30am – 6pm.

GX Gallery, 43 Denmark Hill, Camberwell, London, SE5 8RS