Artist Statement

“I consider that you, the observer, should be allowed to interpret a painting or a drawing in your own way. Too faithful a representation by an artist can often diminish a sense of mystery and frustrate your inclination to create a personal narrative from the image. That isn’t to say I’m not a great deal interested in shape, tone, edge, colour, depth, texture and composition – all the usual things – when I work, but simply that I’m also trying to encourage your individual response to the subject, partly by employing marks that are, with a bit of luck, painterly, reasonably spontaneous and not too ‘deadly’ accurate.

In terms of subject matter, apart from regular portrait, figurative and still life work, I seem to be obsessed with the sea. Using this recurring theme I’m often involved in suggesting single moments in time: splashes of ‘now’. I like the tension generated between a form that, in the real world, is full of movement, and the freeze-frame stillness (‘now’-ness?) evident in a painting or a drawing of it. To use a risky oxymoron, a ‘deafening silence’ (movement/stillness) sometimes occurs… if one is lucky.”

Richard Barry, 2013