These Are the Exmoor Landscapes I Couldn’t Paint
(Oil paint on board)
The six landscapes that form of the core of this exhibition were painted from memory. I tried to execute them ‘en plein air’ but it was the gorse season – no sooner was my easel erected than I fell prey to a severe asthma attack. After several puffs of Ventolin I gathered up all my paraphernalia, shoved it into the back of my Landrover and returned to the sterile safety of my own home, where I finished them off. My original idea was to follow the Monet concept and paint the vista at a given time (so the light, shadows etc. are time specific) – but I would be dead by now. So I gave myself a time limit of 90 minutes to complete the six indoors. I’m not a lover of landscape paintings – these images are a reaction to the environment, physical and visual. In truth I would be happier if Exmoor was concreted over and turned into an out of town shopping complex – I would get more pleasure from the space if it was.
Weedkiller Over Clematis
(Oil paint on canvas)
The fashion for gardening, for an asthmatic, is a cruel joke. We have been ‘doing’ the garden at our home and I made the mistake of planting several climbing plants – I now know I have another contact allergy! Yet again concrete is the only true solution to my problems. The larger paintings in this exhibition are based on the colours these climbing plants go when you spray them with weedkiller.