Monday, October 23, 2017
Hanging by a thread. A limited edition of 15 signed and numbered prints from an original watercolour by Lillias August RI.
Lillias August is a member of the Royal Institute of Painters in Water Colours (RI). Having exhibited with the RI annually since 2000, she became a member in 2006 and has won several awards over the years for her landscape, architectural and still life work. ‘Hanging by a thread’ was exhibited in the RI annual exhibition at the Mall Galleries in London in 2016 and later bought by Andy and Suzannah Coe of Sussex Lighting. Together they have collaborated to make this limited edition of 15 prints.
I started concentrating on still life painting after working as Project Artist during the building of the Cathedral tower in Bury St Edmunds (2000-2010). I could see the significance of the individual components in the general scheme of things. However small and unimportant they appeared, their inclusion was an essential part of the grander building.
In the early years of still life painting, objects were used as coded messages and symbols. They conveyed something more than their everyday purpose. I find humble objects quietly evocative - they seem both intimate and worldly. They can be beautiful in their own right, showing history and human endeavour through their aging, but because they are seen every day they are often overlooked.
For all these reasons my more recent still life paintings seem to have manifested themselves in rows of everyday objects laid out as if for inspection. This is almost a way of forcing your attention on them. I am sure that this analytical approach has also been influenced by my local landscape – the open and regimented landscape of the fens - where the flat horizon is constantly in front of you and where things stand out like props on a stage and catch the eye.
The lightbulbs come from many different places and most of them are now redundant having lain in my brother-in-law’s cupboards for years! The varying shapes and opacity fascinated me and especially the different shadows and light that they cast. The more I looked, the more subtle variations I could see (often the surrounding effects grab me more than the objects themselves).